People who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet are more likely to lose weight as compared to the meat-eaters. Veganism and vegetarianism are two popular versions of the plant-based diet. They restrict animal products for several reasons mainly for health, ethical, and environmental reasons. These diets are plant-based diets that allow eating animal products in a moderate amount.
Plant-based diets are rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, which are high in fiber and take longer to digest. When your food takes a longer time to digest, it keeps you feeling fuller for a long period. If you are planning a plant- based diet it means you don’t need to count calories while taking any meal because vegetables contain significantly fewer calories than that of meat.
In this article, I will be discussing that is plant- based diet effective in losing weight? And if it is effective, then how it works?
Vegetarian diets have been around since 700 B.C. Several religions, including Buddhism and Hinduism, advocate a vegetarian diet. These diets have been popular because of several reasons including health, ethics, environmentalism, and religion. According to the Vegetarian Society, a vegetarian is one who does not eat any meat, poultry, fish, or any animal products. They only take plant- based diets and avoid animal products.
Types of Plant- Based Diet
Most common types of plant- based diets are:
- Lacto-Ovo vegetarians
- Lacto vegetarians
- Ovo vegetarians
Lacto-Ovo vegetarians avoid all animal flesh, but they consume dairy and egg products
Lacto vegetarians avoid animal flesh and eggs but do consume dairy products
Ovo vegetarians avoid all animal products except eggs
Vegetarians avoid all animal and animal- derived products.
How a Plant- Based Diet Works?
As discussed above that all vegetarians avoid all the animal products including dairy, gelatin, honey, casein, albumin, and whey. Plant- based diets focus on whole grains, legumes, vegetables, tubers, fruits, nuts, and seeds. It eliminates animal- based protein and fat sources like dairy and highly refined products that help in weight loss.
Research has shown following plant- based diets can reduce or eliminate the need for medications including statins, blood pressure medication, and certain diabetes drugs. Always check with your doctor before making any changes to your medications.
Here is a closer look at the research:
Lower Risk of Cardiovascular Diseases
A Plant- based diet is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases. Whereas, numerous studies link vegetarian diets, vegan diets, and other plant-based eating plans to improved heart-related outcomes.
Lower Risk of Diabetes
Research shows eating a plant-based diet may lower your risk of type 2 diabetes and improve blood glucose control in people with diabetes. According to the study authors, the research shows eating a diet focused on unrefined carbohydrate, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat, and plant-based protein can reduce insulin resistance, promote a healthy body weight, and improve blood sugar levels.
Lower Risk of Cancer
Studies show people who follow vegetarian and vegan diets have lower rates of cancer; some researchers cite a 10 percent to 12 percent reduction in overall cancer risk.
How Plant- Based Diets Help in Losing Weight?
Following a plant- based diet is also likely to help you lose weight and many physicians recommend plant-based eating for their patients who need to slim down. Some of the weight loss may occur simply because changing your eating pattern requires you to become more thoughtful about your food choices. It helps you to learn eating practices that are helpful for weight loss, like meal planning and increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables.
Foods to Eat in Plant-Based Diet
The overall theme of plant-based diet is the food that does not contain any animal products. While foods can be eaten either raw or cooked into soups, smoothies, casseroles, baked goods, pizza, meatless burgers, and more, the less processing involved the better.
- Nuts and seeds
- Whole grains
Foods to be avoided in Plant-Based Diet
Following are the list of foods that must be avoided when you choose a plant-based diet:
- Refined grains, like white flour and white rice
- Added sugars
- Food additives