People are eating less meat than ever before, and there are many reasons for that.
Not only does ditching meat help save the planet (and the animals!), but it’s also great for your health and well-being.
“Going vegetarian can help lower blood pressure, reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes, and improve cholesterol levels,” said certified health coach Vanessa Kahen during a virtual webinar with Intuition. “It can also aid in weight management, increase your energy, improve brain health, and increase your lifespan, as a plant-based diet lowers the risk of all causes of mortality by 25 percent.”
Many people steer away from vegetarian diets because leaving meat off their plate seems complicated. The good news is that it’s way easier than you think. In her practice, Kahen only promotes eating real food: whole, simple ingredient foods that came straight from the earth, like grains, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables. And when building your meatless meals, there are three prime categories to keep in mind.
“The biggest category on your plate should be vegetables, then protein, then healthy fats,” Kahen says. “If you structure your plate in this way—where there’s 75 percent vegetables on your plate—along with a small portion of a healthy protein and a small portion of healthy fats, you’ll be satisfied and you’ll feel great after that meal.”
It might be hard to switch your mindset at first—especially when meat has taken up a portion of your plate your entire life. But when you replace it with delicious, filling, and flavorful veggies, you won’t even miss it. Here are some plant-based options for each of those categories to get you started.