Becoming Plant-Based: How to Succeed
There is a lot of hype around transitioning to a plant-based diet. Instagram and Facebook are flooded with popular vegan recipes and vegan influencers that make the lifestyle look easy! Documentaries like ‘Game Changers’ have really shed light on the performance and environmental benefits of becoming plant-based. I’m all for it! But, I see too many people head to the frozen food section of their grocery store and purchase highly processed ‘vegan’ burgers, cheese and other meat substitutes. If this is your plan to become plant-based, please educate yourself on the risks associated with eating highly processed foods, and most importantly, educate yourself on how to go plant-based the right way.
VEGAN JUNK FOOD
Too many of us decide to eat Plant-Based and lean into the processed ‘fake’ meats, cheeses and ‘vegan junk food’. Although these are extremely tasty! They have to be in order to draw us away from their animal based counterparts! In order to become palatable, they are also loaded with sugar, sodium and other chemicals. Having a Beyond Burger here and there isn’t so bad…but we need to think about our calories coming from a diversified diet of WHOLE FOODS, fruits, vegetables, unrefined grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. If you decide to transition to a plant-based diet, please pay attention to what you’re selecting at the grocery store and what you’re eating so that you do not fall into the trap of eating poorly. Eating highly processed vegan junk food will not give your body the vitamins, minerals, and fiber it needs! This could be detrimental to your cardiac health, your digestive health and your overall weight.
Before I tell you how GREAT a plant-based diet can be…. there are some extremely important vitamins and minerals that you will just simply not get from a plant-based diet. Make sure you supplement the 3 following vitamins/minerals. If you’re doing this, you’re getting every nutrient you need!
1) Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is necessary for proper red blood cell production, nerve function and metabolism. It is also a crucial part of energy production. B12 is made in the bacteria in the soil, and seeing as our soil is degraded and hygiene standards are quite high, vitamin B12 is non-existent in plants today. Make sure you are supplementing with 2.4 mcg per day!