Plant foods provides us with nutrition, keep us healthy and acts as medicine for when we are sick. Plants are an essential part of any healthy way of eating. Even in the harshest conditions, plant life, in some form, has been a part of traditional diets. By shifting plant foods to the core of our diet, we are making great strides towards greater health whether or not we choose to go entirely plant-based. So instead of getting caught up in reading labels and counting calories, rather focus on including more fresh and where possible raw plant-based foods in your diet.

Here are several great benefits of a plant based diet:

1| Body Mass Index (BMI): Individuals following a plant-based diet that includes a large variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds are more likely to have a healthy BMI and less likely to be overweight.

2| Risk of Chronic Disease: Plant-based diets reduce the risk for many chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and diabetes as well as most other hereditary disease. In fact, those who follow a plant-based diet are more likely to have improved insulin sensitivity and lower cholesterol levels.

3| Reducing Toxic Load: Meat, dairy, and farm-raised fish may contain hormones, steroids, and other toxic residue from their feed and processing. Although a better choice, wild fish can still be contaminated with heavy metals, like mercury, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), which may be hormone disruptors. Consuming organic produce and reducing consumption of animal foods can help limit exposure to these toxins.

4| Being Budget Conscious : Individuals who follow a plant-based diet may save on grocery costs. Whole grains, beans, and in-season produce are economical and incredibly nourishing.

5| Animal Welfare: To meet the demand for animal foods, animals are often raised under poor conditions and crowded together in confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs). Supporting humane farming – or not purchasing meat at all – is a way to place your vote against animal cruelty.

6| Saving The Planet: The demand for animal products is a major cause of deforestation as land is cleared to make room for animals. In fact, nearly 30% of the earth’s land area is used to raise livestock. Farm animals are also a major contributor of greenhouse gases, which are linked to global warming.

7| Natural Resources Depletion: Plant-based foods require less energy, space, and water than animal foods and are less taxing on our resources. Producing one kilogram of animal protein uses 100 times more water than the same amount of protein from grains.

8| Health and Longevity: Plant foods are high in antioxidant compounds like vitamin C, selenium, and vitamin E. These compounds assist in reducing oxidative stress in the body, which decreases disease risk and supports healthful aging. Some of the world’s longest-living people live in the Mediterranean and Asia. Both areas enjoy largely plant-based diets.

Should you wish to learn more health promoting recipes and techniques we invite you to book a Nutrition and Health Consultation with The Health Coach academy team, attend our Healthy Cooking Classes or join our Health Coaching Program.

Results may individually vary. Information and statements made in articles of The Health Coach academy Blog are for education purposes only and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. The Health Coach academy does not provide medical advice, prescribe medication and treatment plans, or diagnose illness. The views and nutritional advice expressed by The Health Coach academy are not intended to be a substitute for conventional medical service. Should you have a medical condition or health concern, consult your physician.

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