Modern Benefits Of A Plant-Based Diet

Did you know that the concept of “eating for a better tomorrow, today” through a plant-based diet, is a fairly new concept? Vegetarianism/Veganism as we know it in the 2020’s is closer to the plant-based diet developed in the 18th Century. Although there are many cultural and religious reasons that people abstain from eating meat, our lifestyle of continually reaping the benefits of a plant-based diet is modern. It all started with George Cheyne, a Scottish physician and celebrated epicurean, who was the first person to go on a vegetarian diet without being prompted by any cultural or religious reason. In fact, Cheyne ate “ only “seeds, bread” and “tender roots (as potatoes, turnips, and carrots)”, with fresh milk and water to replace wine. The reason for his strict plant-based regimen? His health. Cheyne suffered from “lethargy” and “melancholy” (fatigue and depression) when he ate all the decadent meats and animal-based foods of his time, so his vegetable diet was an experiment to see if removing those foods would improve his health. He was right. As a result, Cheyne began to recommend the benefits of a plant-based diet to his patients.

What exactly is a plant-based diet?

There is no international standard for a “plant-based diet” because there are so many different ways to eat “plant-based” while still eating animal-product. In the United States, two bills passed in the state of New York and the state of California define “Plant Based Diets (PBD)” as “ those free of animal products such as meat, seafood, dairy, and eggs. ” A strict vegan diet could be considered the most conservative (least amount of animal-product; no honey or animal-derived foods) while a flexitarian diet could be considered the most flexible mix of plant-based and animal-product. Here at Longeve, we support the diet that best suits you and your lifestyle. We’re just here to help you reach your health goals in the cleanest, most efficient way possible. 

Bottom line: A plant-based diet is any diet that relies primarily on real, whole foods that come from plants for sustenance, not necessarily discounting the intake of animal products. 

What are the rules? 

 Although there’s no strict definition for a plant-based diet, there are some generally accepted rules. 

  • Emphasizes whole, minimally processed foods.
  • Eliminate or reduce the intake of animal products.
  • Focus on plants, including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, seeds, and nuts, which should make up the majority of what you eat.
  • Eliminate refined foods, such as added sugars, white flour, and processed oils.
  • Make food quality a priority- choose locally sourced and organic whenever possible. 

According to Harvard Health and other studies, the key benefits of a plant-based diet include:

  • Improved nutrient intake: plant-based products are packed with a clean source of antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. 
  • Healthy weight-loss: Research has shown that people who follow a plant-based diet are more likely to have a lower body mass index than omnivore dieters. Additionally, plant-based dieters are shown to be more successful at maintaining weight-loss. 
  • Heart health: Improved cardiovascular health is another benefit of a plant-based diet. Eating plant-based can lower blood pressure and cholesterol, as well as promote the anti-inflammatory effects that prevent plaque buildup that causes heart disease. 
  • Decreased risk of serious illness like diabetes or cancer. A plant-based diet can help maintain healthy blood sugar levels to prevent diabetes, while the phytochemicals naturally found in plants have been shown to prevent diseases like cancer. 

Curious about the impact of a plant-based diet on your life? Give it a try! Check out our recipe section, tag us @Longeve as you document your plant-based journey! Discover the next level of health with us this year. 

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