Veganism as a lifestyle has become a hot trend because of activists who refuse to eat cruelty-based products due their ethics; environmentalists who protest the destructive practices of factory farming; and others who simply want to become healthier by adopting a plant-based diet. Regardless of the reason, however, one thing that’s certain is that it’s an effective and natural way to lose weight. Here are the ways a vegan diet can help you get slimmer.
The first thing your body does when you make the switch to a vegan diet is go into detox mode. No need to go on a dizzying juice fast for the ladies because it is still possible to reap the benefits of cleansing while eating solid food. Fruits and vegetables contain healthy amounts of liquid which aid in washing out the body as well as antioxidants and essential nutrients that stimulate digestive enzymes. It promotes good metabolism, which is helpful in losing and/or maintaining weight.
2. High in fiber, protein, calcium
Getting around 30 grams of fiber per day aids in the weight loss process as well as the regulation of blood pressure and insulin levels. Harvard Health Publishing’s list of good sources of fiber are in fact all plant-based such as barley, bananas, and chickpeas. Beans, lentils, quinoa are only some of the plants that can provide the body with amino acids needed to build protein for muscle growth and repair. While the required calcium intake for bone growth is easily attainable on a diet that includes bok choy, beets, and sweet potatoes among many other sources.
3. Healthy fat
While there’s still an ongoing debate on the topic of fat, no one questions that the healthy kind is still a requirement as it is a source of energy. Happy Healthy Life Plans previously mentioned that consuming too much of the trans and saturated kinds is potentially harmful for your heart and a crux to your weight loss progress. Vegan food typically contains more healthy fats than their harmful counterparts.
4. Lower in calories
A weight loss diet is just another term for a calorie-controlled diet. Food is measured in calories because it is a unit of energy. When a body is flush with calories that it doesn’t need, it starts storing unburned calories into fat especially in unwanted areas. Healthline explains that consuming low calorie density foods such as fruits and vegetables will lower your overall caloric intake. It will take you double or even triple the servings of a vegan meal to consume the same amount as meat and dairy, which are known to be caloric dense.
5. No animal hormones
Another reason to avoid eating meat is the contamination of your food with animal hormones. Modern day production of meat involves injecting the animals with hormones in order to speed up bodily processes and often ends up on your plate and into your body. Two of these hormones are progesterone and estrogen which, at an imbalance, can lead to weight gain in women and even mess with the reproductive cycle.
6. Increased consciousness in food choices
A vegan lifestyle improves your awareness when it comes to your food choices. Going grocery shopping will require you to look at the list of ingredients to ensure that there aren’t any animal derivatives as well as give you an understanding of your basic needs for certain nutrients. It won’t take long before choosing carrot sticks dipped in hummus over a sinful bag of chips will become second nature, and you’ll find that you actually enjoy eating healthy and you don’t stretch your leggings out as much.
7. Zest for life
It’s a popular misconception that vegans are weak and lanky, but several plant-powered athletes are succeeding in their respective sports such as tennis superstar Venus Williams and ultra-runner Scott Jurek. They’ve all thanked their diet on occasion, especially in terms of monitoring their weight.
Of course, this is completely achievable for non-sports superstars, too. The New York-based fitness blogger Anna Wildman, for one, came to the realization that her true passion is completing marathons on a vegan diet. She has successfully done so multiple times with only three years-worth of experience, and now shares her insights through hosting her own podcast, No Bull with Anna Wildman. Health IQ lists No Bull with Anna Wildman among its ‘Top 5 Podcasts for Vegan Athletes’, stating that it does a great job of covering the lifestyle in-depth, as well as sports and running. People like Wildman debunk the outdated idea that vegetables aren’t enough to fuel an active lifestyle. Because your body feels lighter from the weight you lost on a plant-based lifestyle, you will likely experience an increase in energy levels to keep your body in tiptop condition.