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How to incorporate more plant-based foods into your diet

A plant-based diet is a diet that involves consuming mostly or only on foods that come from plants. People understand and use the term plant-based diet in different ways.

Some people interpret it as a vegan diet, which involves avoiding all animal products.

For others, a plant-based diet means that plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and legumes, are the main focus of their diet, but they may, occasionally, consume meat, fish, or dairy products.

A plant-based diet also focuses on healthful whole foods, rather than processed foods.

Following a plant-based diet offers many possible health benefits including better weight management, lower risk of heart disease and other conditions, and diabetes prevention and treatment.

People should focus on eating the following food groups when transitioning to a plant-based diet.

  • fruits: berries, citrus fruits, bananas, apples, grapes, melons and avocados

  • vegetables: broccoli, kale, beetroot, cauliflower, asparagus, carrots, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini

  • Root vegetables: sweet potato, Potatoes, Butternut squash, Beets, Legumes, Chickpeas, Lentils, Peas, Kidney beans and Black beans

  • Seeds: Pumpkin, Chia, Hemp and Flax

  • Nuts: Brazil, Almonds, Cashews, Pecans, Macadamia and Pistachios

  • Healthful fats: Avocados, Walnuts, Chia seeds, Hemp seeds, Flaxseed, Olive oil, Canola oil

  • Whole Grains: Brown rice, Oats, Spelt, Buckwheat, Quinoa, Wholegrain bread, Rye, Barley

  • Plant based milk: Almond, Soy, Coconut, Rice, Oat, Hemp

Foods to avoid:

  • Processed foods

  • Sugary foods such as cakes, biscuits & pastries

  • Refined white carbs

  • Processed vegan and vegetarian alternatives that may contain a lot of salt or sugar

  • Excess salt

  • Fatty, greasy or deep-fried foods

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