Fact and Myths about Plant Based Nutritionby holistic-optimal-nutrition on Aug. 06, 2013, under Uncategorized
THERE ARE MANY FACTS AND MYTHS
that circle around the internet and magazines regarding the sometimes controversial Plant Based Diet. Over the last 10 years, the plant based diet has increased in popularity due to the health effects and extensive research that has come about. Much of this research that has been documented dates back to the 1800s. Doctors like T. Colin Campbell, and Dr. John McDougall, among many others, have brought this research to a head, while conducting their own extensive research. Studies such as The China Study that appear in Forks over Knives are rapidly gaining momentum.
Although these studies are becoming more widely spread throughout the world, there is often a stigma, and many questions that come along with giving up meat, fish and dairy. Our country, along with most western countries have been raised on mostly chicken, fish and beef as a protein source, with a small amount of vegetables and a starch. This is the way we are all brought up, myself included. I had always thought that anyone that chose to eat a plant based diet did no more then jump on a bandwagon. Regardless if you go 100% plant based as I did, it is definitely a personal choice. Although based on nutrition facts and rising disease rates, the majority of our diets should be plant based with a small percentage of animal based protein. This is to ensure you are receiving the most amount of nutrients possible, while keeping inflammation down.
BELOW ARE SOME COMMON MYTHS:
MYTH 1: PLANT BASED DIET DOES NOT GET ENOUGH PROTEIN.
Based on the USDA, an adult woman only needs about 46 grams of protein, and an adult man only requires about 56 grams. In the United States, we typically take in about 120 grams of protein primarily from animal products. This type of protein is absorbed differently than plant based protein and comes along with added cholesterol and fat. One cup of dry beans has 16 grams of protein. Leafy greens and plant based protein supplements and brown rice also contain high amounts of protein. As long as you are truly plant based, eating a variety, your protein needs are easily met.
MYTH 2: PLANT BASED DIET HAS NO CALCIUM SOURCE.
Much research has linked meat protein and dairy to osteoporosis and bone density issues. Many have tried to find calcium in other sources. Green leafy vegetables contain calcium if eaten regularly. Most almond and soy milks have not been fortified with calcium and typically will contain more calcium then dairy milk. If this is not in the diet, then a supplement or multi vitamin is recommended. It is still required that women should be taking in 1000mg of calcium a day.
MYTH 3: ONLY ANIMAL RIGHTS ACTIVISTS TAKE ON THIS TYPE OF DIET
Many have a vision that anyone that would eat this way, is simply doing it because they love animals and are considered too earthy. Given, there is nothing wrong with this choice for that reason but over the last 20 years, more of the population that includes youths as well as adults have made the switch due to the education that they are receiving about the health benefits.
MYTH 4: VEGANS NEVER GET SICK
Eating a plant based diet rich in fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds can help boost immunity more than someone who is not on a plant based diet, but no one person is bulletproof. Plant based diet does lower your risk substantially for chronic illnesses such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. This type of lifestyle increases your chances for a better quality of life in later years but does not keep you invincible from all of life’s ailments. If you eat an orchestra of various foods in the plant based realm, you will get an abundance of nutrients. Due to the fact that B12 is primarily in animal products, this is one supplement that is required.
MYTH 5: IT’S TOO HARD TO CUT OUT MEAT AND DAIRY
For a dedicated meat lover (as I was with fish), it seems a difficult task to make these changes, even with the best intent. There are so many wonderful options out there these days that there is a replacement for almost everything. Given, you do have to look and try new things. Some can do it overnight while others need to do it slowly. Try switching to non dairy items to start out with and cutting out red meat and pork. You do not have to give up your love for food. You just have to change your thought process.
Getting healthier and happier as a family is crucial. Whether for weight loss, relearning how to eat properly or getting tips on family exercises, contact a Holistic Nutritionist professional such a myself today! Be well my friends! Check out the website at http://empoweredbynutrition.com/
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