Importance of A Plant-Based Diet
A plant-based diet is a cost-effective, sustainable, and wholesome approach to longer, healthier living. It is primarily focused on the consumption of fresh, nutrient-dense plant products like:
- Vegetables: carrots, lettuce, cabbage, spinach, asparagus, cauliflower, tomatoes, etc.
- Nuts and seeds: almond nuts, cashew nuts, chia seeds, etc.
- Plant-based oils: coconut oil, sunflower oil, almond oil, etc.
- Legumes: beans, peas, lentils, cowpea, etc.
- Whole grains: oats, brown rice, bulgur, quinoa, etc.
There are several variants of plant-based diets; while some might impose complete abstention from animal products and processed foods, others allow flexibility but limit the consumption of animal products. Whatever the case, it’s best to find a balance and stick to a plant-based diet that is feasible.
Plant-based diets are most sought after and highly recommended by physicians, dieticians, fitness communities, and some select celebrities and athletes because of its amazing health benefits.
In today's post, we would take a look at the importance of eating a plant-based diet. So, let’s dive right in.
It Supports Weight Loss
Sticking to a plant diet should not be about losing a few pounds (simply because it is not a fad diet, but a lifestyle), but it is an added advantage that attracts a lot of people who seek to lose weight and stay nourished.
Obesity is pretty much an inevitable consequence of an unhealthy diet and lifestyle. And, despite the rapid dissemination of information connected to the causes and health risks of obesity, statistics show that it is fast becoming one of the most difficult wide-spreading public health issues society has ever faced. More than one-third of the US adult population and 17% of youths are obese or overweight (Ogden CL, 2014).
What’s even worse than obesity, is the risk it poses on the cardiovascular system and leaving the body susceptible to chronic illnesses.
Studies have shown that plant-based diets, since they are rich in fiber and nutrient-dense, contribute significantly to weight loss. In 2016, a study pooled results from 12 different controlled trials involving 1,151 people showed that those that were placed on a vegetarian lost a significant amount of weight compared to others placed on non-vegetarian diets.
It Lowers Blood Pressure and Improves Heart Health
A plant-based diet helps to prevent hypertension or high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes and stroke. A study recently published on the Journal of the American Health Association, revealed that plant-based diets are low-risk intervention to cardiovascular diseases and reduced mortality rates in the studied population.
One has to be careful not to subscribe to an unhealthy plant-based diet; you can do this by keeping away from sugary beverages and fruits juices, refined grains, etc. They spell trouble for the heart.
It Reduces the Risk of Cancer Research done by the American Institute for Cancer Research, says that the best way to stay protected from cancer is through a healthy diet – rich in plant products and minimal in animal foods.
It Improves Cognitive Health
A plant-based diet helps improve brain power. The vitamins and polyphenols found in vegetables and fruits help to lower the risk and slower the progression of the Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.
A plant-based diet is more of a lifestyle than an actual diet. It does help to extend longevity and improves health. Are you on a plant-based diet right now? Or you would like to start today? Let us know in the comment section.