How to start a plant-based diet
Plant-based diets are a very promising healthy food trend: Research suggests people who mostly eat a whole-foods, plant-based diet could reduce their risk of heart disease, some cancers, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. Most people could generally benefit from eating more fruits and vegetables. Although transitioning your diet might seem daunting, it doesn’t have to be. Here’s how to start eating a plant-based diet, according to experts.
Just jumping into any new eating habit can be tricky. If you’re currently a heavy meat-eater, you don’t have to go cold turkey, says Andrea Nordby, head chef of plant-based meal kit company. Instead, Nordby says to swap out two meals per week with a plant-based recipe. “Slow and steady wins the race, and you are more likely to enjoy the process of going plant-based if you don’t rush right into it,” she says.
Change the proportions on your plate
Instead of having meat with vegetables, have vegetables with meat, says Elizabeth Klodas, MD, a cardiologist and chief medical officer of Step One Foods, a company dedicated to helping patients minimise their dependence on medications through strategic dietary changes. “This can not only move your closer to a plant-based diet but also reduce your [kilojoule] intake,” says Dr. Klodas. “The best part? You’re still eating the foods you love but you’re just adjusting the amounts,” she adds.