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These days, people are more cognizant of the importance of their diet on their overall health than ever before.
It shows with the variety of diets that are springing in popularity. Even well-known and established diets like veganism and vegetarianism are getting a positive boost in recognition.
For everyone, the ultimate goal with any of these diets are to be healthy. Nutritionist Sam Houghton of GreenGut Wellness joins Just Ask David to talk to us about another diet that can help you lose weight, fight off (and even reverse!) heart disease, and – get this – you don’t even have to count calories.
What is Plant-Based Eating?
On the surface, plant-based eating may just sound like another phrase for being vegetarian. Although the two diets are compatible, plant-based eating is actually a lot more complex than your average vegetarian diet.
“On a whole food, plant-based diet, you don’t just hold off on the animal products,” Sam explains. “You also don’t eat anything that’s processed. So that includes white flour, white sugar, and a lot of vegetable oils.”
Omitting processed foods from your diet isn’t something we can all do easily. But you owe it to yourself to take care of your body, especially considering the effects of processed foods on your body in the long-term.
So what counts as a processed food?
“My favorite definition of it is from someone who’s really big in the plant-based community: Dr. Michael Gregor,” Sam says. “He defines processed food as something good is taken away and something bad is added.”
Health Benefits of Plant-Based Eating
Plant-based eating has a lot of unique benefits that many other diets do not have.
“Heart disease is the number one killer in our country,” Sam points out. “A whole food plant-based diet is the only diet that has been shown in scientific studies not only to prevent heart disease but also to reverse existing heart disease.”
So since plant-based diets can help with heart disease, it must be great for weight loss too, right? Exactly!
“A lot of people want to lose weight but they want to do it in a healthy, sustainable way rather than going on some crazy crash-diet,” Sam says. “One of the things about a plant-based diet is there’s more bulk and more fiber, so you feel fuller on fewer calories and you don’t have to actively restrict your calories.”
A diet that you can actually feel full on? Sign me up!
Follow Sam Houghton on Social Media
Check out the GreenGut Wellness website and follow on Instagram @green_gut to learn if a plant-based diet is right for you!