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What is a plant-based diet?
Plant-based diets focus primarily on plant foods, including fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, nuts, and seeds. Plant-based is a relatively broad term that encompasses many kinds of diets, from those that include some meat, fish, and dairy (e.g. Mediterranean diet) to those that exclude all sources of food from animals (e.g. vegan or whole food plant-based diets). What all these diets hold in common is that they are based on extensive evidence showing that plant-based diets are associated with good health and long lives. These diets have become popular as a healthy way to sustainably lose weight as well as treat common chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension (i.e. high blood pressure), and high cholesterol as well as many other ailments. Also, there are many athletes such as Lionel Messi, Serena Williams, Lewis Hamilton, and Novak Djokovic that rely on plant-based diets to optimize their performance.
Interested to learn more about how a plant-based diet could work for you? Our health experts are happy to answer your questions. Feel free to leave a message in the chat or through Facebook. We are committed to get back to you as soon as possible.
How can plant-based eating improve my health?
Do you want to get or stay thin in a healthy way? Do you want to live longer? Do you want to prevent getting sick? Do you want to treat, or even reverse, your chronic illness without medical procedures or more medication? Then a plant-based diet may be for you.
Plant-based diets are the optimal way of eating for most people – is the conclusion of numerous health professionals and nutrition researchers who rigorously study different diets and their effects. For example, there are places in the world called ‘blue zones’ where people tend to live much longer, many over 100 years, and experience exceptionally low rates of poor health such as heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and cancer. Although they are in vastly different parts of the world, one commonality among the blue zones is people there tend to have plant-based diets. As such, many health experts think that plant-based diets are the best way to maintain your health and prevent disease.
Many highly respected doctors have published research and written books about the power of plant-based diets to not only manage chronic diseases, but in some cases, reverse diseases that widely considered irreversible – heart disease and diabetes being particularly widespread and increasing. Even former US President, Bill Clinton, switched to a plant-based diet to treat his heart disease after researching the works of plant-based luminary doctors such as Dr Dean Ornish, Dr Caldwell Esselstyn, and Dr Colin Campbell.
Have questions about how a plant-based diet could improve your health? Our health experts are happy to answer your questions. Feel free to leave a message in the chat or through Facebook. We are committed to get back to you as soon as possible.
What is the scientific evidence that plant-based eating is effective?
While plant-based diet may be a new term for most people, the science behind it has been proven time and again over many decades of rigorous research and testing. Just Google the term ‘plant-based diet’ and you will find an overwhelming amount of scientific papers by medical doctors and PhD researchers who have published their findings about the benefits of a plant-based diet in the most prestigious (and selective) scientific publications.
The China Study by Dr Colin Campbell, Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University, and author of over 300 research papers, is considered ‘the most comprehensive study of health and nutrition ever conducted.’ And its conclusion – ‘You can dramatically reduce your risk of cancer, heart disease, and diabetes just by changing your diet.’
The number of excellent scientific studies on plant-based eating are too numerous to list here, or even read – it can all be a bit overwhelming. Do not worry, that is why we are here to help.
Have questions? Want help finding the best info that addresses your specific needs? Our health experts are happy to answer your questions. Feel free to leave a message in the chat or through Facebook. We are committed to get back to you as soon as possible.
If plant-based diets are so great, why haven’t I ever heard of them? Is this just another fad diet?
The benefits of plant foods have been widely recognized for decades. Ever hear a grandmother tell the grandkids to ‘eat your veggies!!!’? Even standard diet advice recommends plenty of plant foods to go along with the standard diet staples of meat, dairy, and eggs. However, the proportion of plant foods in the diet is key. Evidence shows that diets with high proportions of plant foods tend to result in the best health outcomes. That is why a huge number of such diets with different names have been created.
Ever hear of the Mediterranean diet, one of the most popular diets in the world? It is a plant-based diet focused on high proportions of plant foods, with limited amounts of meat and fish. In fact, the three best diets in the world according to US News & World Report are all plant-based diets. While they all have some slight variations and different names, the foundation of all those diets include high proportions of plant foods.
But the term plant-based diet is not just ‘old wine in new bottles’ as they say. There is a lot of new research and advice on how to maximize your health with plant-based nutrition. At one extreme of plant-based diets – one consisting solely of whole, plant-based foods, there have been incredible scientific discoveries of the power of plants to treat diseases and even help you live longer healthily.
Want to know what kind of plant-based diet may be best for you? Our health experts are happy to answer your questions. Feel free to leave a message in the chat or through Facebook. We are committed to get back to you as soon as possible.
I see many unhealthy vegetarians and vegans – followers of plant-based diets. Why aren’t they healthier?
A healthy plant-based diet has two features; 1. It focuses on plant foods, and 2. It limits processed foods, such as fried snacks and sugary drinks. The healthiest diets have both features, and they are equally important. While vegetarians and vegans may focus on #1, the unhealthy ones are almost assuredly not focusing on #2, instead eating ‘junk’ processed plant foods. You can be a vegan who eats only fried potatoes and drinks cola, but you will not be healthy.
Next time you go to the grocery store, look at the nutrition labels of the processed foods you may normally buy, such as chips, cookies, snacks, sauces, canned juices, etc. They are usually packed full of one or all the three major culprits that lead to poor health – sugar, oil, and salt.
Eating whole, minimally processed, foods is essential for a healthy plant-based diet.
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Are plant-based ‘fake’ meats healthy?
It depends. Many ‘fake’ meat products, including those from globally popular brands, are highly processed and contain unhealthy amounts of sugar, oil, and salt. However, there are some brands and products that strive to create a plant-based product that is both tasty and healthy.
Have questions about how healthy the products you buy are? Want to know where you can get healthier alternatives? Our health experts are happy to answer your questions. Feel free to leave a message in the chat or through Facebook. We are committed to get back to you as soon as possible.
What if I only eat plant-based foods, and eliminate all animal foods? Is that safe and healthy? Are any supplements needed?
Diets that eliminate all animal products have been deemed safe and healthy by health experts worldwide. In fact, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the world’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals, says that, ‘Well-designed vegetarian diets that may include fortified foods or supplements meet current nutrient recommendations and are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence. Vegetarians must use special care to ensure adequate intake of vitamin B-12.’ (More info)
Other than a supplement of vitamin B12, a well-designed plant-based diet, is safe and appropriate for everybody. However, experience has shown us that many people make some crucial mistakes when they switch to a plant-based diet, which prevents them from achieving the results they are looking for.
Interested in personalized advice on the best ways to adopt a plant-based diet to get the results you want? Our health experts are happy to answer your questions. Feel free to leave a message in the chat or through Facebook. We are committed to get back to you as soon as possible.