The 80/20 Whole Foods Vegan Diet
Why Focus on Whole Foods?
Doing regular searches on Google, I came upon the above chart that focuses on 80% vegan whole foods and limiting processed vegan foods to no more than 20%.
And it hit me…
Without knowing it, I was actually practicing this form of vegan diet, since I’d been monitoring my food intake on Cronometer and trying to eat mostly a whole foods diet.
With the popularity and convenience of processed vegan foods like Beyond Beef and Beyond Sausage, as well as alternative milk and cheese products like Violife, Daiya and Follow Your Heart, it’s important to keep these processed foods in-check.
- It’s healthier for the body to eat mostly whole plant foods.
- Processed vegan foods CAN also be detrimental to your health. Use sparingly or simply go easy on them.
- From personal experience, I have felt better eating more whole plant foods.
So What Do You Eat?
With regards to healthy whole plant foods, you don’t have to restrict your vegan diet to just salads and green smoothies.
Healthy Grains and Beans are always a healthy combination.
Smoothies can combine lots of fruits and leafy greens that will boost your whole foods intake.
I personally eat a lot of rice. Different types of rice, including white rice. And I compliment the rice with different vegetables: green beans, brussel sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, carrots… all whole foods.
And cooking up a vegetable stir fry will definitely boost your whole foods intake.
Watch the Bread!
In recent years, I have reduced my bread intake to only include instances when I dine out with family or friends. This is because I noticed I had started feeling sluggish and low on energy when I ate a lot of bread.
I don’t have Celiac Disease, but I do believe I have a gluten sensitivity, and being that most wheat is very hybridized, if I do eat bread it’s the old world style of baking bread, as opposed to eating the very processed in a factory type of bread. The old world style of breads are made the old fashioned way and this includes most types of sourdough breads.
Anyway, I have noticed the difference when I don’t eat bread, and focus more on rice which compliments vegetables at any meal. And for me, the feeling is like night and day.
Eat Your Broccoli!
Broccoli is of course a whole food, and a superfood as well.
One of my former colleagues who had beat cancer and to this day is living a healthy cancer-free lifestyle told me that “broccoli is anti-cancer food”.
I never forgot that.
And to this day, I have steamed or sautéed broccoli almost every day.
It is one of the most nutrionally dense cruciferous vegetables out there, and if you can only make yourself eat one vegetable, then at least eat broccoli.
Someone’s grandmother told them to “eat your broccoli”… so, how true is that?
So, this is my current focus, and one I’ve been doing the last few years. Try to eat 80% whole foods, go easy on the gluten products, and eat your broccoli.