Plant-based diets have become more popular in recent years for two main reasons. It would be hard to argue with the belief that most people who switch to a plant-based diet do so for animal welfare reasons. The other main reason for changing to a plant-based diet is the perceived health benefits, especially those associated with weight loss.
Alongside the many positives stories, there are also those that might make you think that a plant-based diet is not the greatest idea. Stories persist that moving to a plant-based diet means you will be missing out on vitamin B12 and vital sources of protein.
However, with greater education and an extensive range of fortified products widely available, these stories are likely to become a thing of the past. However, if you are going to choose a plant-based diet to lose weight, there are several other things you need to be aware of.
Just because it is plant-based does not mean it is healthy
It is a popular misconception that anything marked plant-based or vegan is good for you. While this is broadly correct, if you are merely going to replace processed omnivorous meals with the plant-based equivalent, then the chances are you will not see the drastic benefits you might be expecting.
You may find to your disappointment that while that plant-based burger is slightly better for you than the one you’ve been eating for years, on closer examination of the amount of fat and calories you are consuming is similar. It is worth remembering that these products are designed to mimic their omnivorous equivalent, and in the same way that your old burger might not be part of a weight loss plan, neither will the plant-based version.
The common weight-loss benefits of a plant-based diet
The common weight-loss benefits of switching to a plant-based diet can be found when you start making your own meals at home, using as few processed, prepackaged ingredients as possible. While this may sound like a lot of effort, the long-term benefits will become apparent once you make the change.
You can quickly find that you will have quite a few leftovers unless you are feeding a large family every day, both of your dish and the ingredients. A solution is to develop a batch-cooking mindset that long term means you only cook around half the time and the rest you are just reheating something you made days or weeks earlier and have frozen.
Benefits of a healthier you
The resultant weight loss and the far cleaner diet from eating less processed foods should have clear health benefits and make you more productive at work (and might even score you that raise you’ve been after for a while).
A healthier you can expect fewer visits to the doctors, you can save you money on medication for any long-term health problems, and help you find affordable health insurance in Texas, Arizona, or wherever it is you are living.
One other benefit of having meals on tap is that you could well find yourself ordering fewer takeouts and the apparent health benefits as well as additional financial ones. Overall the move to plant-based foods has been proven to bring health benefits such as weight-loss, which can be accelerated further by reducing the amount of processed food you eat.