Vegan & Plant Based Diet Info
Brown rice and oats not only keep you satiated for longer than their processed equivalents but are also a great source of iron. Ezekiel bread is a nutritional all-rounder, made from several types of grains, including sprouted whole grains and is chocked full of fiber.
Millet, amaranth, barley and farro will keep you full, minimize spikes in blood sugar, as well as add more variety to your nutritional intake.
Butternut squash and sweet potato are rich in calcium, so no need to worry about ditching dairy products. Broccoli, cauliflower and brussels sprouts are part of the cruciferous family and are cancer-fighting superheroes. Green leafy vegetables like kale, collard greens, and spinach will boost your iron levels and if you eat them with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, vitamin C will accelerate your iron absorption.
Legumes: Beans, lentils and soy
Legumes are the foundation of any well-rounded vegan meal plan. They deliver enough plant-based protein to keep your metabolism running, your muscles strong and your cravings at bay so you don’t feel the need to grab any processed treats when hunger strikes. Soy products like tofu, tempeh (fermented soy) and soy milk are foods that benefit your weight management efforts the most when consumed in their unprocessed and unsweetened forms.
Olive oil and avocado both have high levels of vitamin E, which is excellent for your skin health, as well as high levels of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, Walnuts, chia and flaxseed (ground flaxseed is best) are high in plant-based omega-3 oils, an anti-inflammatory that helps your body release excess water or toxins. Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which protects the lining of your gut, preventing nutrients from seeping through (leaky guy syndrome) and the development of food sensitivities.
Nuts, nut butters, and milks
Walnuts, peanuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios and hazelnuts,as well as their nut butter variants, aren’t only delicious but are also handy snacks to take on the go. Their high protein and calcium levels will keep you satiated, and you won’t need much else to satisfy hunger pangs. Calcium-fortified plant milk such as soy, almond and rice milk are particularly nourishing. Why not try making your own homemade almond milk or cashew cheese.
Berries, apples and bananas
Berries are free radical fighters, protecting you from inflammation and cancer, as well as helping your skin stay supple and young-looking. Bananas are a key ingredient in a lot of vegan meal plan baking and sweetening. Though high in soluble fiber, it’s best to be mindful how much you eat, as bananas are still high in sugar. Apples contain pectin, which feeds the healthy bacteria in your gut, and a healthy gut leads to a healthy weight.
Vegan sources of protein
Here is a list of essential plant-based proteins to include in your vegan meal plan grocery list.
Unprocessed soy products
Non-dairy alternatives — almond, cashew and oat milks or yogurts
Nutritional yeast (also packed with energy-boosting B12)
Foods to avoid on a vegan diet
Processed faux meats like vegan meats, e.g. sausages, burgers or tofurkey
Sweetened dairy alternatives
Vegan baked goods or sweets (Note: Just because it’s vegan doesn’t mean it’s healthy)
Sauces like tomato ketchup, salad dressings, vegan mayonnaise, stir-fry flavorings
Agave syrup (Agave is commonly used in vegan baking, but is extremely high on the glycemic index and can lead to spikes in blood sugar)
Coconut products like oil, milk and cream (Note:Although healthy in small amounts, over-consumption can lead to weight gain)