Adopting a lifestyle centred on consuming whole foods such as vegetables, leafy greens, nuts, whole grains, and fruits is one which is becoming increasingly common amongst those living a healthy lifestyle. History and recent evidence both emphasise the benefits associated with having a diet which comprises of whole foods.
For those who are blind to these benefits, those individuals who have altered their diets to only include plant-based foods act as a testimonial to the fact that this type of diet helps you not only physically, but mentally and spiritually as well.
For me, there were several reasons which led me to move towards a healthier and enriching lifestyle, some of which I will share with you so you can also make the right choice, one which will transform your life.
Undeniable benefits of whole foods
Whole foods have everything you need
I’m sure you have always heard that a diet deficient in meat is one which is deficient in all forms of nutrients, especially proteins. This is a complete lie. Most of the major nutrients that our body needs living a healthy lifestyle, namely protein, fibres, vitamins, and minerals are present in whole foods, allowing the complete elimination of meat from your diet.
As proof, when I solely incorporated whole foods into my diet, I felt I was receiving everything my body needed and the lack of meat only made me feel better in every way.
Bring in the light
According to the origins of the word, nutrition literally means ‘process of light.’Plants use sunlight as their original source of energy, undergo the process of photosynthesis, make food for themselves, and then become our source of food. Human beings need to take in light; it is a fact. And what better way to do that than consume a plant-based diet?
Cleanse your body
Even a hardened meat eater can’t deny the fact that all meat is eventually decomposed by parasites in the outside environment. Now imagine that this decomposition process is occurring inside your body. Don’t you think that’s something you should most definitely avoid? If the meat you consume doesn’t leave your digestive system within 72 hours, it will lead to parasites developing inside your body and eventually to catastrophic results such as a terminal disease.
Do animals deserve to be slaughtered?
The meat you’re eating has been obtained by slaughtering an animal – this alone sounds completely inhumane. However, what’s worse is the fact that these animals are forced to live in miserable conditions and are treated in an extremely cruel manner – they spend their lives on factory farms, being treated harshly and waiting for their life to eventually end.
The plight of these animals was enough to make me seriously consider changing my diet. However, the chemically processed food and below-average hygienic conditions made me realise that not only is this an atrocity towards the animals involved, but also a hazard to my own health.
It’s time to go green!
Climate change is real and it’s time we did something about it.
One way to do this, which saves the planet, as well as your health, is by eating whole foods. How, you may ask? Our agricultural system is based on growing crops for animals or in livestock farming, both of which consume extremely large amounts of water. Growing plants instead will significantly minimise our water consumption. Additionally, our environment will benefit as plants increase oxygen levels and decrease carbon dioxide and nitrogen levels, so it is a win-win situation.
Promote your emotional well-being
As plants use light as their source of energy, they contain molecules which enhance feelings of joy and happiness in your body, all leading to increased positivity.
As I switched to whole foods, I noticed a definite change in how I felt and the way I dealt with negative emotions, making me a more satisfied person, mentally and emotionally at peace.
Live life to the fullest
Who doesn’t want to experience life in the best way possible? By leaving out meat from your diet, your body is clear of any unnecessary and possibly harmful substances, allowing your brain to be free of toxins, keeping you mentally satisfied.
Do you really need proteins?
Of course you do! But one thing the meat industry is always feeding into people’s minds is that if you don’t eat meat, your body isn’t getting any protein and that’s something you can’t live without. While it is true that you can’t live without protein, whole foods contain sufficient protein and eating meat to fulfil this non-existent deficiency is totally unnecessary.
How you can make the switch
My parting thoughts are for all those who are looking to change their lifestyles and move to a healthier, more whole foods-based diet.
The best thing to do is to start slow – eliminate meat from your diet a bit at a time instead of all at once. While you are doing that, also experiment with different alternatives and figure out which ones you like best. A plant-based diet can be exciting as well as crucial for living a healthy lifestyle – it doesn’t have to be dull and monotonous. Figure out which foods fulfil all your nutritional requirements and experiment with them to come up with new and interesting recipes.
Let your pan be your canvas and your newly discovered favourite ingredients your paint, and create something wonderful every day.