Veganism: the diet which still divides opinion. Not as misunderstood as it once was but the vegan regime continues to leave many of us baffled… and perhaps a little bit intrigued?
Once, the vegan diet was ‘just for hippie types’; now there’s a plethora of celebrity vegan advocates and health blogger enthusiasts. In short, veganism has become a bit trendy.
Equally, there’s a lot to be learnt from the vegan diet. It’s not just eat fruit and veg ad infinitum, but a varied and decidedly foodie diet.
Most of us could benefit from taking a leaf out of the vegan way of life; take a look at these for starters…
Eat more vegetable protein
The body needs protein. Most of us know that, but many of us mistakenly think that meat and eggs are the only sources of high-quality protein. Instead, make like the vegans with more vegetable protein. Nuts, beans, lentils and peas are excellent sources of vegetable protein with considerably reduced fat and cholesterol.
Steam your vegetables
A staple in the vegan kitchen, steamers offer a convenient way to cook fresh and frozen veggies as well as meats and rice. By steaming, you’ll retain up to 90% of the nutrients found in each vegetable. Steaming is also super easy: there’s no risk of over-boiling or burning. Plus, steamers are a doddle to clean.
Be more food conscious
Knowing where your food comes from and how it’s made has never been more important. Packaged, processed foods are jam-packed with ingredients which won’t do your diet - or your health - any favours. Take a tip from the vegan diet plan and get ingredient-savvy. Prepare to be shocked.
Spend more on fruit and veg
Stocking up on extra fruit and veg will add extra pounds to your shopping bill, but it’s worth it. Adopting a vegan approach to your meal planning will encourage you to spend more on nutrient loaded fruit and veg and less on long-life, processed products. Head to the nearest farmers market or grow your own if you’re feeling confident.
Limit your soy intake
Touted as a health food for years, and recommended as part of a whole foods diet, soy has enabled vegans to eat a more varied diet. But it seems soy might have a dark side. Studies now suggest that too much soy could lower testosterone levels in men, affect thyroid function, cause weight gain and disrupt hormones. Err on the side of caution: eat soy foods in moderation and avoid soy-based supplements.
Do you have any more vegan or healthy eating tips? Share them in the comments box below, or read about the Healthy Food Scam.