The topic of nutrition may seem confusing, but at the end of the day, it’s truly quite simple: the more plants you eat, the healthier you’ll be! From vegetables and fruits to whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds, plants are the most nutrient-dense foods available. Chockful of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber, whole plant-based foods nourish the body from head to toe. They energize, fuel the brain, detoxify, boost the immune system, slow the aging process, lower inflammation, and fight against cancer, illness and disease. The first step to getting healthy involves increasing the amount of plants, especially vegetables, in your diet.
- A plant-based diet is rich in real whole foods and limits processed packaged foods. It typically excludes animal protein such as meat, fish, eggs and dairy.
- Eating more plants – vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds and legumes – is associated with weight loss, satiation, less cravings, more energy, and a lowered risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
- Easy ways to incorporate more plants into your diet include adding them to smoothies, soups or sauces, using veggies in place of grain-based pasta, chips and rice, and upgrading snack and dessert choices.
- Looking to simplify? Stop in the Nourished® Kitchen Market Monday through Friday from 9am to 6pm to purchase plant-powered Cleanse Soups and Superfood Smoothies, Grain-Free Seed Crackers and more!
Here are the top 10 ways:
- Enjoy ‘Meatless Mondays’ – going 100% plant-based for a full day every week is a minimal commitment with big rewards. This money-saving and environmentally-friendly approach floods your body with nutrients that energize, improve digestion and flush the colon.
- Add veggies to your smoothies – bulk up your smoothies with veggies rather than large amounts of fruit. This technique slashes calories and sugar, thus helping to promote blood sugar balance, satiation and mood stability throughout the day. A few of our favorite and very approachable add-ins include frozen cauliflower, fresh spinach, mint and kale. Want to take the guesswork out? Feel free to explore our line of Superfood Smoothies – each incorporates 2+ servings of fruit and veggies along with easily-digested collagen protein, probiotics and prebiotics.
- Sneak veggies into sauces – whether you are making a homemade marinara, hummus or vinaigrette, there’s almost always an opportunity to add garlic, onions or shallots, as well as herbs like parsley, dill and oregano. These accents boost flavor while providing energizing minerals and protective antioxidants.
- Top with pesto – packed with dark leafy greens, extra-virgin olive oil and pine nuts, this Italian staple is heart healthy and hormone balancing. Typically associated with pasta or pizza, this sauce can also be used as a finishing touch for avocado toast, a frittata, fish or even roasted veggies for a double bang for your buck.
- Add microgreens to your sandwich – with up to 40 times the nutrients of their mature counterparts (i.e. a head of broccoli or bunch of kale), a pinch of these sprout-like veggies packs a powerful punch when it comes to immune-boosting vitamin C, bone-strengthening vitamin K and cancer-fighting sulforaphane. Microgreen varieties such as broccoli, kale, radish or mixed greens provide a nice finishing touch to sandwiches, wraps, soups and salads.
- Swap pasta for veggie noodles – eat colorful plates to boost your antioxidant intake. Beta carotene, chlorophyll and anthocyanins are just a few of the many antioxidants that fight free radical damage. Boost energy and brain power, slow the aging process, lower inflammation and fight cancer by opting for spiralized zucchini, sweet potato, squash, beets or broccoli rather than grain-based noodles.
- Make homemade veggie chips – from kale to sweet potato, veggie chips are a more nutritious way to satisfy salty, crunchy cravings than your everyday potato or corn chip.
- Upgrade your snacks – every meal, including snacks, is an opportunity to provide your body with nutrients. Instead of choosing highly processed, nutritionally-void chips, pretzels and snack mixes, fill up on veggies and hummus, raw nuts and seeds, or a piece of fruit with nut butter.
- Opt for non-dairy milk – alternative milks such as oat, almond, hemp and coconut are easier on digestion, less acidic and can be included as part of an anti-inflammatory diet. To learn more, join us for the Anti-Inflammatory Diet Lunch & Learn.
- Rethink dessert – banana ice cream, avocado chocolate mousse and chia pudding with berries are a few healthier ways to sneak in more plants while satisfying a sweet tooth.
If you’re seeking more energy, longevity and beauty with less pain and inflammation, and a lowered risk for illness and disease, look no further than plants! By incorporating veggies, fruit, nuts and seeds into sauces, smoothies, snacks and dessert, you can easily meet the recommended 5 servings of plants per day. At Nourished®, we sell a variety of foods that will help you accomplish this – veggie-based Cleanse Soups and Superfood Smoothies, Grain-Free Seed Crackers and more. Let us help make healthy eating simplified and approachable—stop in Monday through Friday from 9am to 6pm to explore our Kitchen Market items!