Veganism as a lifestyle has been growing dramatically in popularity during recent years. This interest in veganism stretches from physicians to nutritionists to the everyday consumer. But what does it really mean to adopt a plant-based vegan lifestyle?
In my view, this lifestyle involves the consumption of whole grain, plant-based vegan foods that act as a powerful tool for preventing and reversing diseases in our bodies. Veganism is not a trend or a fad. Instead, it is a powerful tool for self-transformation when combined with daily exercises, yoga, and meditation. From my own personal experiences, I can attest to the transformational power of a plant-based, vegan lifestyle.
The eating habits of modern society have distanced us away from natural, freshly grown, and home cooked meals. We are rapidly advancing towards a diet completely based upon highly processed (junk) and frozen foods. An average person today consumes excessive amounts of refined flours, sugars, fats, and animal proteins. Hence, the rate of diseases diagnosed, rises every year. Studies have shown that 7 out of 10 diseases are directly linked to nutrition in the United States.
My own journey towards health and well-being began about 5 years ago, when shortly after giving birth to my kids, I started experiencing pain and stiffness in my joints. After much research, trial and error, personal food journals, and eliminating various foods out of my diet, I was led to an astonishing discovery: adopting a whole grain, plant-based, dairy-free diet coupled with yoga and meditation was the key to my healing and health. Nutrition was the key to my healing. The results were unbelievable! I felt better than ever before and abundantly energetic.
Today, many leading hospitals, nutritionists, and physicians all around the globe are advocating and helping their patients transition to a whole foods, plant-based, vegan diet to prevent and reverse chronic diseases. If you have not already adopted this lifestyle, I encourage you to give this lifestyle a try for 30-days and enjoy its many benefits. To help make this transition easier, please see the following tips:
1. Substitute all dairy products with dairy-free products in your diet. Some reliable vegan brands that I love and use everyday are:
- Almond Milk (Almond breeze)
- Coconut milk (So Delicious brand)
- Creamer for tea/coffee (Nut Pods)
- Almond Ricotta, Almond Cream Cheese and Yogurt (Kite Hill brand)
2. Substitute meat and fish with tofu, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
3. Substitute white flour breads and pastas with whole grain breads and pastas.
4. Substitute white rice with healthier grains like brown rice and quinoa.
3. Swap all the processed, industrially manufactured snack/junk foods (chips, soda, candy, etc.) with real, nutritious whole food (fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains)
4. Watch these life-changing documentaries (available on Netflix):
- Hungry for Change
- Forks over Knives
- What the Health
- Food, Inc.
5. Eye opening book recommendations available on Amazon are:
- The China Study by T. Colin Campbell
- Milk- A Silent Killer by Dr. N.K Sharma
- Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr.
- How Not to Die by Dr. Micheal Greger
6. Educate yourself well with various Vegan alternatives to make better food choices. Reading the labels on food products is a great way to start. My rule of thumb is, “If you can’t read and understand the ingredients on a label, don’t buy it”.
7. Go to your favorite grocery store and explore the ever-expanding range of amazing plant-based vegan alternatives. Keep trying new vegan recipes and dishes every day (TaazaTable has many to choose from).
8. You can always enjoy eating out, but be mindful of the ingredients in the dish. A delicious colorful salad with a twist of light dressing is a much healthier choice than a white flour pizza loaded with cheese. Almost all restaurants have now started catering to vegan customers with expanded vegan-friendly options on their menus.
9. Exercise at least 3-4 days in a week. Examples of great activities include swimming, walking, working out in the gym, etc.
10. The mind is an essential tool if you want to keep your body healthy. Implementing a daily meditation routine of 10-20 minutes keeps the mind relaxed, young, fresh, and positive.
11. Stretch your body by practicing yoga for 2-3 times a week either at a local yoga studio or at home. If you are new to yoga, getting started with a professional yoga instructor is advisable.
The more we bond and proximate ourselves with nature, consume organically-produced food free of pesticides and GMOs, cook fresh meals as much as possible, adopt plant-based, vegan diets with a wide variety of fruits and vegetables and combine diet with daily exercise, yoga, and mediation, we can live a much healthier, energetic and blissful life!
“Veganism is not a diet, it is a complete lifestyle!”