If you’ve spent even just the tiniest amount of time around me - whether in person or online - then you know a few things about me: I’m plant-based, I’m health-obsessed and I’m a firm believer in using food to fuel your body in a purposeful way.
I wasn’t always this way. It’s been a journey for me the last couple decades as I’ve made choices that have moved me towards this way of not just eating… but thinking about how I want to feel in my body, then choosing foods + drinks and movement that will achieve those results.
Over the years, I gradually shifted my habits to eating less and less meat (until I was eventually eating none) and more and more plants.
I did this for a couple reasons:
I struggled with digestive issues most of my life. The less meat I ate, the better my body seemed to use food for energy (aka… digest it!) with less irritation.
I also struggled with anxiety most of my life. Truth be told, I became totally dependent on medication to manage it. Until I learned that shifting to a more plant-based diet lessened my symptoms -- and the healthier I became physically, the healthier I felt both mentally and emotionally.
For me, food became my medicine. And plants fully disclosed their magic. So here I am today shouting it from the top of every tree and greenhouse ~~ I am a believer in the power of eating plants.
And that’s why I say I believe in plant magic.
I get so many questions, though, about how to eat plant-based in a very meat-focused world.
So I thought I’d share 3 ways you can easily shift your habits and become more plant-based yourself.
These pro tips or hacks of mine are subtle changes you can make to your existing routines. Simply pick and choose what works for you and give it a try. And if it works, amazing. You can begin to work it into your regular life.
Plant-Based Idea 1 - Hack your breakfast
Start really simple with your breakfast.
Trade refined or overly processed grains for whole grains like oatmeal, quinoa or barley. Then, add a few nuts or seeds and top your whole grain bowl with fruit.
You can even drizzle some honey or maple syrup for some extra sweetener if you need it.
Don’t reach for white sugar.
One of the main ideas of being plant-based is consuming food in its whole form as much as possible. Both maple syrup and honey don’t need refining to arrive at their final form. (Unless you count what the bees do).
Plant-Based Idea 2 - Hack your salad
A salad is a no-brainer here but it doesn’t have to be boring.
Start with your favorite leafy green base and then get a little adventurous!
Top it with quinoa. Add in some tofu or tempeh (which is usually a higher quality and in fermented form). Toss in a few nuts and herbs. Make room for some legumes or beans if you have a fav. Keep the dressing simple with a lemon and olive oil mixture. And never ever believe avocado can’t be added to absolutely anything.
Round it out by combining different forms of protein (like the tofu, nuts and beans) so it’s not just a dull plate of leaves. One of the best things about being plant-based is the huge variety of options + flavor combinations you can create.
I liked to top my salads off with beRuna Salts for an extra nutritional boost. These are salts made with superfoods and super-seeds. You can add them to basically anything (there are even sweet versions with which you can top your dessert). Check them out here - beRuna Salts.
Plant-Based Idea 3 - Hack your dessert
You don’t have to give up chocolate.
I love a good dark chocolate (plus it’s healthy for you), but pair it with a fruit like mango or strawberries to get some added benefits and a sugar fix.
The higher the percentage of cacao your bar of chocolate contains, the more bitter it may taste.
Side note: look for pure cacao as the ingredient of your chocolate. Cacao is cocoa, but in its unprocessed form.
The bitterness I just mentioned is the signal it’s in its purest form. Because that bitterness is home to tons of good stuff like antioxidants and minerals (hello, magnesium!).
You can offset the bitterness with a little fruit. And the more you eat it, the more you’ll learn to love the depth of the flavour -- I mean, most of us learned to enjoy coffee and wine, right?
Do you feel confident you can give eating plant-based a try? Without the overwhelm?
It may be a challenge to initially step out of your comfort zone. But you also may surprise yourself with just how much you love plants too. Not to mention, you’ll get the benefit of that plant magic I mentioned earlier.