Most people have heard of Veganism and other plant-based lifestyles. And many of them have decided not to go that route when it comes to taking back their health because it seems too difficult. The reality is, not only is it an extremely easy lifestyle to adhere to, the benefits are so vast, it’s even easier to commit to. Making changes to your diet can always be intimidating and hard to stick to, so let’s take a look at some ways that eating a whole foods plant-based diet can dramatically change your life and boost your overall wellbeing and longevity.
Inflammation is an inherent part of the body’s immune response, and it’s not always necessarily a bad thing. Acute inflammation is a temporary response to something going on inside the body that helps to heal itself. It is chronic inflammation that is the problem. There’s a laundry list of symptoms of chronic inflammation, and many people suffer from it. Eating a plant-based diet can quickly reduce or even eliminate chronic inflammation in the body. While inflammation is not the root of all diseases, it does play a significant role in many of the common diseases Americans suffer from – mainly heart disease, diabetes, depression, and certain types of cancer. Why not give your health a head start and try a plant-based diet and see how you feel.
Many plant-based staples are packing a serious probiotic punch. With your best gut health supplements being considered by many doctors your “second brain,” maintaining proper gut health is essential to your overall vitality. Whether you have been drinking dairy probiotic drinks (which also boast immense gut benefit) and are curious about giving fermented foods a try to add on to them or just want more variety in your food routine; Vegan fermented foods are just what the doctor ordered. Try exciting new things like Kimchi, Kombucha, Sauerkraut, and the list can go on. The great thing about fermented foods is they add rich flavor and texture to all types of foods, from sandwiches to salads. They’re even delicious to eat on their own. And the most delicious of all the plant-based probiotics – Sourdough bread! You’re probably already a fan, so just make the conscious decision to make this your bread of choice instead of white or wheat.
Eating a plant-based diet absolutely boosts your immune system. For over two decades, eating a plant-based diet has stood the test of time as being one of the best for preventing cancer. When you’re eating, non-plant-based, the vitamins, phytonutrients, and antioxidants found in plants and fruits in such abundance cannot be found in any other food source. These nutrients help balance your cells and keep your immune system running at peak condition. A high-functioning immune system is critical in staving off disease and having a balanced immune response to viruses we may come into contact with.
Maintaining a healthy weight is one of the most important things you can do to reduce your risk of most major diseases, specifically cancer, and heart disease. This is because excess weight causes inflammation and hormonal imbalances. When you’re eating plant-based, you remove most of the foods that cause weight gain. Add in light to moderate exercise, and you’re on your quick path to weight loss.
Fiber’s Your Friend
Whole foods plant-based diets are extraordinarily high in fiber, and fiber is absolutely your friend. Fiber not only increases your gut health it also helps you better absorb the nutrients in the foods you are eating. Fiber stabilizes your blood sugar, and it also helps lower your harmful cholesterol levels. Lastly, and for some people, their favorite benefit of fiber – it helps with bowel movement. As we age or go through other medical seasons in life, we can have trouble in this department. Eating a diet rich in fiber makes this one less thing you have to worry about as you’re focusing on your health and wellness.
If any of these benefits made you feel like you could benefit from this diet, you should consider giving it a try. Just be mindful that even when you’re eating plant-based, there are still temptations and downfalls you need to avoid. There are plenty of plant-based foods that are high in sugar and fat. So, even if something is labeled as vegan, it could still be very processed – so cut down on cookies and crackers when and where you can. But, if you stick to “eating the rainbow” and being conscientious of what goes into your body, one thing is for sure, you will look and, more importantly, feel much better.