Plant-based and vegetarian diets have become increasingly popular in recent years, with at least 2.5M Australians choosing a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle as a way to live a healthier and more sustainable lifestyle. Despite the many benefits of eating more plant-based foods, there are still many myths and misconceptions surrounding this way of eating. In this article, we will explore the top five myths about a plant-based diet and dispel the misinformation that surrounds this healthy and sustainable way of eating.
Myth 1: Plant-based diets are lacking in protein
One of the most common misconceptions about plant-based diets is that they are lacking in protein. However, according to this study from Harvard School of Public Health, this is far from the truth. Many plant-based foods, such as beans, lentils, tofu, tempeh, and nuts, are rich in protein and provide all the essential amino acids that the body needs to function properly. In fact, studies have shown that a well-planned plant-based diet can meet or even exceed the recommended daily intake of protein. Did you know that the two main ingredients in the Stone Age Staples Gluten Free Original Loaf are quinoa flakes & almonds? These are both absolutely loaded with healthy plant-protein, with two slices containing 10g of protein!
Myth 2: Plant-based diets are not nutritionally complete
Another myth about plant-based diets is that they are not nutritionally complete. Many studies have proved that plant-based diets provide all the essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that the body needs to function optimally. The key is to ensure that you are eating a variety of plant-based foods and combining them in a way that provides complete nutrition. For example, by eating whole grains, legumes, and leafy greens, you can easily meet your daily requirements for vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids. One of the only ‘watch outs’ is vitamin B12. Whilst you can eatfood that is fortified with B12, we like to use Bioceuticals B12 spray each day just to make sure we are getting what we need! The reality is, whether you choose a plant-based diet or something else, we should all be conscious of our B12 levels.
Myth 3: Plant-based diets are expensive
Many people believe that plant-based diets are expensive and that they require buying exotic and hard-to-find ingredients. However, according to this study fromThe Lancet Medical Journal this is definitely not the case, with plant-based diets typically saving on average up to 34% in foodcost in upper-middle-income to high-income countries compared to average diets in these countries. In our experience, plant-based diets can be very affordable, especially if you focus on buying whole foods and cooking at home. For example, beans, lentils, and brown rice are some of the most affordable staple foods you can buy and they are also some of the most nutrient-dense. Additionally, buying in bulk can help you save money on your plant-based foods, we typically buy our goods in bulk from Terra Madre. If you need a little tasty inspo, try out our Mexican Black Bean Wraps! This recipe is simple, affordable and so delicious.
Myth 4: Plant-based diets are boring and bland
Another myth about plant-based diets is that they are boring and bland. We guarantee that this is not the case! Plant-based diets can be incredibly flavourful and diverse, as there are many plant-based ingredients that can be used to create delicious and tasty meals. Spices and herbs, such as cumin, turmeric, oregano, nutritional flakes can be used to add flavour to your plant-based dishes. Additionally, using ingredients like marinated tofu, avocado, nut butters, seeds and even vegan feta like the Vegan Dairy’s amazing Persian Feta can add richness and texture to your meals. If you are keen to try one of our favourite and super flavoursome go-to dinners, check out our Crispy Tofu with Sweet and Sticky Noodles.
Myth 5: Plant-based diets are not sustainable
Finally, some people believe that plant-based diets are not sustainable in the long term. Plant-based diets can be incredibly sustainable, both for the planet and for your own health. For example, plant-based diets are associated with a lower carbon footprint, as they require fewer resources and less land to produce compared to diets that include meat and dairy. Additionally, plant-based diets are associated with lower rates of chronic disease, such as heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer, which can help improve the sustainability of your health in the long term. Interested to learn a little more? Check out this article from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.
In summary, the benefits of a plant-based diet are numerous and go beyond just the health benefits. It can improve the health of our planet, reduce animal cruelty and promote sustainability. However, it's essential to dispel the myths and misconceptions about plant-based diets to help individuals make informed decisions about their health and well-being. The team at Stone Age Staple has followed a plant-based lifestyle for almost 5 years now and believe that through embracing this choice, we can create a better future for ourselves, our children and for the planet.
It is important to remember that a plant-based diet is not a one-size-fits-all approach and can be customised to fit your individual needs and preferences. To ensure you are getting all the essential nutrients and meeting your dietary requirements, you may consider working with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian such as Sarah Marko to ensure you are getting everything you need to nourish your body.
Comments will be approved before showing up.