How To Sustain A Plant-Based Diet and Still Thrive In Your Active Lifestyle
by Callum Allan on Apr 19, 2023
In recent years, it has become quite popular to follow a plant-based diet. And for good reason too, as research has shown that it is not only beneficial to our health, but it is also much easier on the environment. For individuals who live an active lifestyle, there may be concerns about getting enough protein or other necessary nutrients on a plant-based diet. However, you can rest assured that it is absolutely possible to thrive on a plant-based diet while also maintaining your exercise routine.
1. Plan Your Meals
One of the most important things to do when making any dietary changes is to plan your meals. Sit down and make a list of the different meals you want to have during the week. This will make grocery shopping easier and ensure that you have all the necessary ingredients on hand. When planning your meals, be sure to include a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes as these are all excellent sources of protein and other important nutrients.
2. Eat Enough Protein
Protein is an important nutrient for muscle growth and repair, and it is often a concern for individuals on a plant-based diet. However, there are many plant-based sources of protein that you can incorporate into your diet such as lentils, chickpeas, tofu, tempeh, and seitan. You can also choose to supplement with protein powders made from plants such as pea, rice, and hemp. Remember that as an active individual, you might need slightly more protein per day than somebody who is less active.
3. Pay Attention to Nutrient Deficiencies
Some nutrients are more difficult to obtain on a plant-based diet, and it is important to pay attention to ensure you are getting enough. Vitamin B12 is one of these nutrients, and it is often found in animal products. However, you can obtain it from plant-based sources such as fortified cereals and plant-based milk. Iron is another nutrient that is often a concern, but you can get iron from sources such as lentils, spinach, and fortified breakfast cereals. If you are concerned about any particular nutrient, speak to a registered dietitian who can help you tailor your diet to meet your individual needs.
4. Listen To Your Body
When transitioning to a plant-based diet, it is important to listen to your body. Everyone's digestive system is different, and it may take some time to adjust. Some individuals find that they feel better right away, while others may experience bloating or other digestive disturbances. Make sure to drink plenty of water, chew your food thoroughly, and eat slowly to give your body time to adjust.
5. Be Open-Minded and Experiment
Finally, it is important to be open-minded and experiment when transitioning to a plant-based diet. There are so many delicious and nutrient-dense foods to choose from, so try new recipes and experiment with different cooking methods. You may find that you discover new foods you love or that your tastes change over time.
In conclusion, it is entirely possible to thrive on a plant-based diet while living an active lifestyle. Making sure that you plan your meals, eat enough protein, pay attention to nutrient deficiencies, listen to your body, and experiment with different foods are all important steps to take. By following these guidelines and being mindful of your food choices, you can easily sustain a plant-based diet and still thrive in your active lifestyle.