More people than ever are making the transition to a predominantly plant-based diet, with 7.3 million Americans considering themselves vegetarian and an additional 22.8 million following a mostly vegetarian diet (Vegetarian Times). People are attracted to a plant-based diet for numerous reasons, including concerns about health or the ethical treatment of animals. Here are just some of the benefits of focusing on a plant based diet.
Switching to plant-based proteins is much more cost effective than paying for meat. Beans and legumes are great sources of protein that cost significantly less than an equivalent amount of meat.
The recommended daily intake of dietary fiber is at least 25 grams for adults, yet most don’t get close to that amount in their diet. Eating a plant-based diet makes it considerably easier to meet your recommended daily fiber intake.
Accumulating scientific evidence suggests that a plant-based diet reduces your risk of chronic diseases, including:
We grow a lot of grain to feed animals, but we would use less water and other energy resources if we ate the grain ourselves. In the United States, 70% of the grain produced is fed to farmed animals.
An article in Scientific American reveals that the amount of beef the average American eats in a year creates as much greenhouse gas as driving a car over 1,800 miles.
One of the most noticeable effects you’ll see from eating plant-based sources of protein is better blood sugar levels. Animal foods contain IGF1 (insulin growth factor) which promotes higher blood sugar causing cravings, blood sugar swings, and often that shaky, moody feeling you get if you don’t eat something right away, or if you skip meals. Plant-based proteins don’t cause this. In fact, they do the opposite; they keep you full a long time and provide greater satiety. They also don’t spike your blood sugar.
All plants are full of carbohydrates and fiber, plant-based protein that contains amino acids, healthy fats that benefit the metabolism, and vitamins and minerals that support the body. They energize us and keep our bodies from having to break down foods like animal products. Think of it this way: the less work your body has to do, the more energy it can provide you.
Nuts & Seeds are always a great choice for plant-based snacks that offer energy and many other health benefits.