13 Aug Benefits of a Whole Foods Plant Based Lifestyle
People who first hear about whole foods plant-based (WFPB) lifestyle almost always think that this is synonymous with adopting a vegetarian or vegan diet. In reality, this is not the case. Unlike vegetarians that completely abstain from eating meat and poultry, those who adopt a WFPB lifestyle have the option to completely avoid animal products or just limit their intake.
If you are thinking about switching to a WFPB lifestyle, you need to adhere to the following principles:
- Avoid refined foods and white flour.
- The bulk of your dietary intake should consist of plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains and legumes.
- Consumption of “whole” foods or those that are minimally processed.
- Quality of food is given primary consideration (organic or locally sourced foods are preferred.)
Why Should You Switch to a Whole Foods Plant-Based Lifestyle?
Given the types of food that constitute a whole foods plant-based lifestyle, it is evident that adopting this diet can bring numerous benefits. Below are some of the reasons why switching to a WFPB lifestyle can do you much good:
- Helps prevent heart-related problems
Numerous studies support that individuals who consume a diet packed with plant-based food are less likely to develop heart diseases compared with those who eat a lot of non-plant-based foods. One study in Brazil revealed that people who eat plant-based protein rather than animal-based protein are 60 percent less prone to plaque buildup in the arteries of the heart.
- Helps lower the risk of diabetes
A large-scale study showed that people who follow a plant-based diet are 34 percent less likely to suffer from diabetes compared to those who adopt a non-plant based diet. A similar study also found that the risk of developing type 2 diabetes is reduced to almost 50 percent for people who consume plant-based food.
- Helps prevent obesity
If you are struggling with weight, switching to a plant-based lifestyle can lead to significant weight reduction. More importantly, unlike diet fads that can trim you down but harm your overall health, adopting a WFPB lifestyle offers a positive and lasting impact on your health.
- Helps lower the risk of some forms of cancer
Some studies support how a plant-based diet can significantly lower the risk of developing colorectal cancer and gastrointestinal cancer.
- Helps prevent mental decline
Considering that fruits and vegetables are packed with antioxidants, there are studies that support how plant-based diets can prevent mental decline and development of Alzheimer’s disease among the elderly. Many research studies also revealed that such a diet can reduce the risk of developing dementia or cognitive decline to as much as 20 percent.
Given the many health benefits of adopting a whole foods plant-based lifestyle, it is clear that it is something worth considering. Unlike other dietary regimens that are hard to sustain because of their many restrictions, WFPB lifestyle offers a wide variety of food choices which means you will not feel deprived. Essentially, this lifestyle is focused on training you to be cautious of what you put inside your body because you only have one and you have to take care of it.