Posted By Rebecca Sturgess July 2, 2018
A diet high in plants has shown to have a number of health benefits. By eating a variety of plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains you, can boost your daily intake of nutrients and support optimum health. Plant foods are high in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fibre, phytochemicals, protein and omega-3’s.
Here are 5 benefits of eating more plants:
- They are high in antioxidants and phytochemicals – antioxidants support the body in fighting against free radicals and toxins. Phytochemicals are the bioactive compounds found in fruits and vegetables, which have shown to reduce the risk of a number of chronic diseases. Phytochemicals give fruits and vegetables their pigment, flavour and scent (think the deep blue colour of blueberries, and bright red colour of strawberries!).
- High in fibre – fibre is essential for gut health and supports the digestive processes. A diet high in fibre supports a healthy weight, stabilised blood sugar levels, improved gut function and lower cholesterol levels. Plant-foods are great sources of both soluble and insoluble fibre Soluble fibre will keep you feeling fuller for longer, while insoluble fibre promotes regularity and a healthy colon environment.
- They reduce inflammation – plant foods including chia seeds, flaxseeds, hemp seeds and walnuts are all excellent sources of omega-3 essential fatty acids, which have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body.
- They promote a healthy weight – not only are plant foods a great source of fibre, they also promote satiety (the feeling of fullness), aid weight loss and stabilises blood sugar levels, so you’ll be less likely to over eat. Plant foods have also shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes.
- Detox support – leafy greens and brassica vegetables play a vital role in liver detoxification. Liver detox helps the body to balance hormone levels, improves skin health, liver function and removes unwanted toxins!
Tips for increasing your plant-food intake:
- Veggie sticks and nut butter – an easy healthy snack! Chop up your favourite vegetables along with a nut butter (high in good fats and protein).
- Bite Me Fine Foods products – great-tasting range of falafels and bite, which are all certified organic, vegan, made fresh, and packed with a number of different vegetables and locally grown Australian produce! (Click here to find your nearest stockist!).
- Make a batch of fruit salad to take to work.
- Smoothies – with a base of nut milk or coconut water, add your favourite fruits and veggies to a smoothie for a nutrient-packed meal. A delicious combo is coconut water, strawberries, pineapple, baby spinach, kale and chia seeds.
- Eat the rainbow – aim to eat a variety of different coloured fruits and vegetables each day to get the maximum amount of nutrients and phytochemicals!
Article by Rebecca Sturgess – Nutritionist BHSc (nut med)