How To Increase The Number Of Plant-Based Foods You Consume

There are many proponents of a plant-based diet nowadays, from doctors to nutritionists to weight loss experts. Plants are rich in vitamins and minerals, and they are also high in fiber. A diet that consists mainly of vegetables and fruits can help you lose weight or maintain a healthy weight and decrease your risk of type II diabetes, stroke and heart attack. But how do you make the transition from a diet that is high in meat and dairy products to one that is higher in plant-based foods?

Try adding one serving of fruit or vegetable to every meal. Add blueberries to your cereal in the morning, a side salad at lunch, or an extra helping of green beans or the vegetable of your choice in the evening. The more fruits and vegetables you add to your meals, the fewer meat or dairy products you’ll need to consume.

Try replacing meat with vegan meat-substitutes. For example, instead of hot dog, try a vegetarian soy-based hot dog. Instead of a hamburger, try a veggie burger. There are many types of veggie burgers that use different combinations of grains and legumes.

Instead of drinking milk or using milk in cooking, try one of the various plant-based milks. These include soy milk, rice milk, coconut milk, and almond milk. Each has a distinct taste and may be available in different flavors like chocolate and vanilla, but be aware that flavored milks are likely to contain added sugar or artificial sweetener.

Look for substitutes for other dairy products as well. There are vegan cheeses and cheese sauces that are made with nut butters, like cashew or macadamia, and soy. Some plant-based alternatives to butter include olive oil, peanut oil, and coconut oil, especially in cooking.

There are egg substitutes in the dairy section and in the baking section of grocery stores that sell vegan products. In homemade recipes, flax seeds and chia seeds can be soaked in warm water until the water thickens like an egg white. Some fruits like banana, applesauce, pumpkin and prunes can also serve to thicken or bind ingredients.

You can also look for processed foods that use only plant-based ingredients. One company to look for is Hampton Creek, which makes an egg-free mayonnaise called Just Mayo and another eggless product called Just Cookie Dough. For more information about Hampton Creek and its products, check out this news site.