3 Benefits of a Whole Food Plant Based Diet
The U.S. is in a health crisis. According to the Center for Disease Control & Prevention, "chronic diseases are responsible for 7 of 10 deaths each year, and treating people with chronic diseases accounts for 86% of our nation’s health care costs." In addition, childhood obesity is on the rise. Furthermore, the CDC states that behaviors such as a diet of high-calorie, low-nutrient foods and beverages and a sedentary lifestyle contribute to the obesity problem. What if there was a way to prevent & reverse chronic illness that was good for all beings and the planet? There is; a whole food plant based diet. Let's, now, explore 3 benefits of a whole food plant based diet.
Good for Your Health
For the last 35 years, visionary Dean Ornish, M.D. has been scientifically documenting that diet and lifestyle can reverse chronic conditions. And while doctors such as Ornish and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn encourage a low fat vegetarian diet, Dr. Joel Fuhrman, M.D. recommends taking it a step further. In his article, Reversing Heart Disease, he shares the results from two 6-week studies. The diet that was vegetable-based and included nuts & seeds reduced LDL cholesterol levels by 33% as opposed to a low fat vegetarian diet which reduced LDL by 16%.
Save the Animals
In yoga philosophy, the first and most vital principle is ahimsa, non-harming. Unfortunately, greed has allowed factory farming to reach an all time low. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), “over 99% of farm animals in the U.S. are raised in factory farms, which focus on profit and efficiency at the expense of the animal welfare.” The living conditions are horrible as there are no federal laws regulating the treatment of farm animals while they are living on the farms.
Great for the Planet
According to an article published in the Vegetarian Times, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that, "chemical and animal waste is responsible for more than 173,000 miles of polluted rivers and streams. Runoff from farmlands is one of the greatest threats to water quality today. Agricultural activities that cause pollution include confined animal facilities, plowing, pesticide spraying, irrigation, fertilizing and harvesting."
Favorite Resources for a Whole Food Plant Based Diet
Now that you've explored 3 benefits of a whole food plant based diet, here are some of my favorite resources to help you get started.
- Clean by Alejandro Junger, M.D.
- Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser
- Grain Brain by David Perlmutter
- Salt, Sugar, Fat by Michael Moss
- The China Study by T. Colin Campbell & Thomas M. Campbell
- The Omnimore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan
- Wheat Belly by William Davis, M.D.
- David vs. Mansanto
- Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead
- Food, Inc.
- Food Matters
- Forks Over Knives
- Hungry for Change
- King Corn
Favorite Cook Books
- Eat Taste Heal by Thomas Yarema, M.D., Daniel Rhoda, D.A.S & Chef Johnny Brannigan
- The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook by Kate O'Donnell
- The Homemade Vegan Pantry by Miyoko Schinner
- The Plant Power Way by Rich Roll & Julie Piatt
Favorite Recipe Sites
Of the 3 benefits of a whole food plant based diet, did one benefit speak more to you than the others? Let me know in the comment section below!