Plant Based Whole Food Diet - Tips for Beginners
Are you just starting a plant based diet, or in the process of doing your research? If so, you have come to the right place. You are going to learn some of the best tips for beginners, which will help you make the transition from a traditional diet to one that is more plant-based.
Plant Based Diet Benefits – Foods You Already Love
Before you begin to change your diet too much, make a list of plant-based foods that you already love. This helps a lot with the transition to a fully plant-based diet. Get out a piece of paper and a pen, and write down any plant-based foods that are part of your current diet.
This might include always eating a banana before your workout, enjoying salads with your lunch, or maybe you are a big fan of potatoes or rice next to your main dish. Make a list of all plant-based foods you like to eat, including: Fruits, Vegetables, Beans and Legumes, Nuts and Seeds, Whole Grains and Starches.
Adding in Whole, Plant-Based Foods to Each Meal
Another easy step for beginners is to start adding more whole foods to each of your meals and snacks. For example, if you typically eat eggs for breakfast, don’t replace them yet. First, have your eggs, but add some spinach and mushrooms to them to make a scramble, or have some fruit on the side. Continue eating your burger and fries, but maybe switch to a black bean burger, veggie burger, or something like Beyond Meat. Everything else can be the same for now, just switching out the meat itself.
Going Meatless One Step at a Time
When you feel ready to start reducing meat in your diet, try just one meal at a time, or one day at a time. If you tend to eat less meat during breakfast or lunch, then that is a good place to start with being meatless and adding more plant-based options. When you go a few weeks with a fully plant-based breakfast, you can then start adding more plant-based lunches, dinners, or snacks.
You may also want one meatless day a week at first, such as Meatless Monday. Commit to no meat or animal products every Monday, then if you enjoy it, you can slowly add in more days.
Protein is Not King of All Food
Protein in plant-based diet seems to be the concern of everyone who is concerned about eating less eggs, meat, and cheese, but trust me, it is not the end all, be all of healthy food.
Yes, protein is important, but it isn’t everything
It is also much easier to get from plant-based foods than you might think.
Foods like nuts and seeds, beans, many whole grains, tofu, and a lot of the whole grain breads you eat probably have a good source of protein. If you are not completely vegan, eating eggs on occasion and adding Greek yogurt to your diet will also get you more protein.
If you still feel like you are lacking, try a protein supplement like adding a scoop of collagen or protein powder to your morning smoothie.