How To Start A Plant Based Diet

How To Start A Plant Based Diet

  • Dr. Laurie Marbas discusses the importance of adopting a whole food, plant-based diet for long-term health and offers practical tips on how to get started. She mentions there are generally two types of personalities: those who dive in head-first and those who take a more gradual approach over two to three weeks.
  • The whole food, plant-based diet focuses on unrefined plant foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and a small amount of nuts and seeds. It avoids processed foods, added sugars, and all animal products, including dairy and meats.
  • When transitioning, consider the foods you already eat that are plant-based and think about simple substitutions. For instance, if you like oatmeal but use cow’s milk, switch to a plant-based milk. For meals, think substitution: a hearty vegetable soup instead of chicken soup or a plant-based pizza instead of a traditional one.
  • One strategy for a smooth transition is to first change breakfast for a week, then lunch the following week, and finally dinner on the third week. This phased approach can make the process less daunting. Also, the diet can actually be a cheaper alternative to eating processed foods and animal products.
  • Common mistakes to avoid include relying on processed vegan foods or “fake meats” and continuing to consume oils. These won’t yield the health benefits of a whole food, plant-based diet and can be more expensive. Another mistake is underestimating the need for whole grains and beans to sustain energy levels, focusing solely on fruits and vegetables instead.

So, whether you’re diving in head-first or wading in one meal at a time, this diet is not just a leafy green path to health, but also a way to keep your wallet from going on a diet of its own!

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