Veganism and vegetarian diets have been around for a very long time. However, in the last few years, the “plant-based” trend has exploded. A plant-based diet is one that focuses on whole plant foods (aka a whole food plant-based diet) such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds, herbs and spices. There are widely recognized health benefits of a plant-based diet from increased energy (yahoo!) and heart health as well as decreased risk for diabetes.
If you are considering making the switch to a plant-based diet, we've broken down 5 common and totally normal effects you can expect.
Plant-based Diet Tips for Beginners:
1. You might feel overwhelmed.
Switching to a plant-based diet is just like building a new healthy food habit. It takes time and commitment. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t panic. Your body takes time to adjust, and so does your mentality. You’re trying new ingredients, cooking in new ways, and changing your relationship with food. Give yourself flexibility at first, there’s no need to go cold turkey. Try adding 2 plant-based meals a day until you feel fully ready.
2. You may feel hungrier.
Hangry? This is normal! Veggies and fruits are typically not as high in calories or protein as meat, so should be eaten in larger quantities than you may be used to. Make sure to eat enough carbs and the best plant-based protein options (i.e. grains, beans or other legumes) and don’t be afraid to snack on nuts or seeds.
3. Cravings can spike.
No matter your diet, cravings are something we all deal with. When switching to plant-based, you are cutting out many processed foods that your body may have been used to consuming. The best solution is to have food substitutions on hand that you can rely on when the cravings strike. Here are “Five Ways to Overcome Food Cravings.”
4. Got gas & bloating?
Your body may experience some changes. At first, you may have more gas, bloating or other digestive issues. This is nothing to worry about and will pass. It’s due to the increase in fiber you are consuming (yay, veggies!), and can be remediated by drinking lots of water and starting your transition with cooked rather than raw vegetables. All of Splendid Spoon’s soups are packed with cooked veggies and grains, which are perfect for the plant-based diet beginner!
5. You'll feel amazing!
Once your body has adjusted, you should start feeling leaner, cleaner, and more energized. It’s no coincidence that many pro athletes have been turning to plant-based diets recently to improve their physical ability and stamina. Take that new-found energy, and crush your day!
Interested in trying our pre-portioned, plant-based meal delivery? They make switching to a plant-based diet a breeze. Get started with a weekly delivery and try going vegan for 1-2 meals a day. It really can make a big difference in how you feel!
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