The Article:

Plant-based Diet 101: How to Ditch Meat and Thrive


By:  Jessica  Murnane  Founder, One Part Plant  April 7th, 2014

It seems these days everyone's buzzing about a whole food plant-based diet. There are documentaries advocating the lifestyle (Forks Over Knives & Hungry for Change), New York Times best sellers (Crazy, Sexy, Diet and It’s All Good), and celebrities (Ellen, Kristen Bell and Jessica Chastain) on board. Even a former president (Bill Clinton) is giving it love. Let's dive into exactly what this diet is all about. 

What is a Plant-based Diet?

A diet based on whole or minimally processed vegetables, fruits, grains, nuts and seeds. It also reduces or eliminates white flour, sugar and oil. By focusing on nutrient-dense whole foods, we cause less inflammation to our bodies and create a healthier gut, which many doctors believe is our second brain.

7 Benefits of a Plant-based Diet

  • More energy
  • Clearer skin
  • Sounder sleep
  • Mood stabilizing
  • PMS relief
  • Reduce or eliminate pain from arthritis, endometriosis, IBS and migraine headaches.
  • Reversal of diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer!

A Typical Day for a Plant-based Eater

A plant-based diet has many options, but to get an idea of what you could eat, here's a typical menu for any given day.

  • Morning: Oatmeal with berries and maple syrup or a green smoothie
  • Lunch: Almond butter curry sauce with broccoli, greens and rice
  • Snack: Baba ganoush with cucumbers and tomatoes
  • Dinner: Sweet potato and black bean tacos with an avocado salad
  • Dessert: Banana bread and chocolate sandwich cookies

Stock Your Pantry With Plant-based Foods

If you decide to try eating a diet rich in plant-based foods, you will want to stock your fridge and pantry with a lot of fruits and veggies as well as a number of other healthy options, like:

How to Get Started?

  1. Get Educated: Watch a food-focused movie Forks Over Knives or Hungry For Change or explore plant-based/veggie websites for inspiration. 
  2. Experiment in the kitchen. Buy vegetables you've never heard of and try something new. Terry Walter’s Clean Food is a great cookbook to get you started.  
  3. Make one swap a week. Try a green smoothie in the morning instead of your breakfast sandwich for order your favorite Thai dish sans meat.
  4. Invite a friend to a veg-friendly restaurant. If you aren’t keen on cooking this way yet, have someone do it for you.
  5. Be good to yourself. Change isn’t always easy, so take it slow. Big or small ... feel proud of every step you take to being a healthier you.

 

Jessica Murnane

Founder, One Part Plant

Jessica Murnane Jessica is a designer and plant-vangelist spreading the good word about good food through her website and restaurant program, One Part Plant.

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