In case you haven't noticed, there's a movement happening right now. That movement is about taking back our health and going plant-based. With the state of healthcare on a delicate tightrope act within our government, it is up to us to start making smart food choices.
What the heck does plant-based mean anyway? In one of my posts, I mentioned that I am completely plant-based, meaning I don't consume any animal products. Being plant-based also means I eat very little processed food and get about 90% of my nutrients from whole foods. Whole foods being whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and beans. I won't lie, going completely plant-based means you're going to have to start cooking from scratch. It seems daunting at first, but over time, as you get better, it becomes a creative outlet (at least it has for me). And, if you have children, this would be a great time to get them involved in healthy eating. Make it family time!
The doctors who have pioneered this movement are Dr. Barnard, Dr. Gregor, Dr. Ornish, Dr. Esselstyn, Dr. Campbell and so many more. They all have their own specialties, but have come to the same conclusion; a whole foods, plant-based diet is the optimal diet for humans.
The more research I read, the more I am convinced that humans are herbivores. You might disagree, and that's okay. But as more studies come out on the effects of eating meat, the less one can argue with the facts. In my own experience, since going completely plant-based, I can say that I feel better than I ever did. I can say that I am healthier at 40 than I was at 20 (at that age, I was eating pepperoni logs).
Personally, I don't need research to tell me that plant-based vegetarianism is the best way to eat. Since I've given up all animal products (including eggs and dairy), I sleep better, no longer get lower back pain and have an overall feeling of well-being. Eating healthier has literally changed my life. There are so many chronic diseases that we face, and most of the time believe that it's genetic or a part of aging. If you knew how good your body could feel, isn't it worth the change?
Ready to learn more about going vegan? Here are some of my top resources on Youtube and Netflix that keeps me educated and motivated.
1. What the Health - arguably the best plant-based documentary right now. I've had so many people tell me that they watched this and decided to go vegan. The creators discuss the link between meat, disease, our government and big business.
2. Nutrition Facts - This is Dr. Gregor's Youtube channel, I also linked his website above. He basically scours the latest scientific data on food and nutrition and delivers it to us normal folk in language we can understand.
3. Mic the Vegan - Mic (pronounced Mike) is like a millennial version of Nutrition Facts, although he isn't a doctor. He points to and discusses a lot of scientific date to support why going vegan is optimal.
4. The Gut: Our Second Brain - Science is just now starting to understand our relationship with the good bacteria that lives in us, on us and all around us. If you have Amazon Prime, I highly suggest watching this documentary. I started understanding more about my gut flora after I became gluten intolerant. Making sure we have as diverse good gut bacteria is a part of optimal health.
5. The Food Revolution Network - Run by father and son John and Ocean Robbins (of Baskin Robbins fame), this site serves as a great resource for eating better and the environment. Every year, they hold an online Food Revolution Summit where they interview experts for 8 days. The summit is free live and then you can purchase later to listen to on demand.
There are a myriad of resources and if you know of some great ones, please list them in the comments section. I also invite you to do your own research and share any great articles you've come across.