For January, I am doing a Whole Foods Plant Based Diet. And although this sounds super simple, when you take a deep dive it can just get more confusing. So let’s talk about this! You may find a healthier way of living…
Let’s start with a few facts. I am not anti-meat, and have enjoyed many a great steak in my time. I do not feel that anyone has to become a vegetarian or stop wearing their leather or banish eggs from their diets, if that is not what makes them feel better. I fully respect all diets and all reasons for eating (or avoiding) whatever it is you have decided to eat. But I do think it is important to be mindful about it (and this comes from a -hopefully former- Taco Bell addict). And when I started looking for a challenge for January, I really wanted to see if I could without eating meat.
Going vegetarian seemed a bit too easy (since I think even Taco Bell makes a few vegetarian items) so I decided to take it a step further. I would go Whole Foods Plant Based. But what the HECK did that mean?
Turns out the more I read the more confusing it got. There seems to be a fair amount of “definitions” of this movement. So let’s talk about it and how you can add more of this into your life!
Google “Whole Foods Plant Based Diet” and you’ll get a bunch of definitions and pages and pages of information. My favorite one though (and yes, it turns out its OK to “pick and choose” a bit) is from Forks Over Knives. This way of eating includes whole unprocessed foods, especially plants, whole grains and legumes. This way of eating seeks to avoid animal products such as meat, cheese, and dairy products. (I myself am giving a little grace for dairy and eggs over this next weekend with friends, especially we’ll be doing all of the cooking (nothing processed), but mostly I’m avoiding them this January). Hard core Whole Foods Plant Based Diets avoid oils and nuts, but I feel like I have to draw the line somewhere-so I’m still eating both, just in smaller quantities. But in most of our vegan recipes on our site you can use vegetable broth instead of olive oil for sautéing with similar results.
The bottom line is the more plants you can eat, the better. The smaller the amount of animal products you eat, the better. Can you do Whole Foods Plant Based and occasionally have salmon? Or a small portion of roasted chicken? Or a scoop of ice cream? You can. It turns out there are no food police, and it does not need to be absolute to still give you benefit. Strict is not for everyone. I’m trying to be completely vegetarian this month, but I can’t say I will be forever…
Some of the reported health benefits of a Whole Foods Plant Based Diet are decreased insulin resistance, decreased cholesterol, decreased blood pressure, prevention (both primary and secondary) of heart disease, and potentially even weight loss! (My doctor is cheering like crazy right now…)
Are you looking to incorporate some of this into your daily life? Here are a few Whole Foods Plant Based resources for you!
A Few Whole Foods Plant Based Websites for more information:
The Game Changers (Also a Netflix movie of the same name)
ForksOverKnives.com (Also a Netflix movie of the same name)
OhSheGlows.com The first website I turned to for new Whole Foods Plant Based recipes (plus the majority are gluten free)
MinimalistBaker.com Although not 100% vegan anymore, the majority of recipes on this site are Whole Foods Plant Based
ChefChloe.com Food Network Star Chloe Coscarelli shares recipes including her vegan cupcake recipe.
ThugKitchen.com Vegan recipes with attitude.
Vegan Richa Plant based recipes with an Indian flair.
A Few Podcasts you might enjoy!
*Just a disclaimer, this is not intended to be medical advice, just resources for you to get more information about this movement.