The Power of Plants
Plants, plants, plants! They are filled with so much goodness and have finally hit the spotlight within the past few years. We’re not talking about your cute, decorative house plants, but the kinds you should enjoy on a daily basis. Did you know there are several categories of plant-based foods that include: nuts, seeds, whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables? Within each of those categories, there is an even wider array of foods and flavor profiles! Wrapping our heads around all the trends, news and terminology can be a bit stressful, so here’s our latest breakdown:
Carbs = Friend
Human physiology has showed us for centuries that our bodies primarily function off of the energy we attain from carbohydrates, which are also known as sugars. While the media focuses solely on the bad carbs that are refined and processed, they barely mention the golden carbs that are formally known as complex carbs and found in most plant-based foods! This type of carb is our friend because it contains TONS of disease-fighting nutrients, especially fiber, which is essential for digestion, gut microbiota (fancy word for good bacteria), and ideal weight.
The month of June, also known as National Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Month, presents us with delicious seasonal fruits and veggies so make sure you take advantage of Southern Selects fresh produce and this summer’s flavorful bounty!
- Nutty (ex: asparagus)
- Sour (lime, mango)
- Sweet (sugar snap peas, carrot, blackberries, small papaya, tomato)
- Bitter (endive, radicchio, Brussels sprouts)
- Spicy (arugula, watercress)
PBD vs. Vegan
When comparing a plant based diet (PBD) to a vegan diet, the biggest and most important difference to note is that PBD’s include mostly whole, unrefined plants. It restricts the processed foods (including oils) since these usually strip plants from their naturally-found nutrient contents. In a grocery store layout, this restricts access to the center aisles of processed food heaven, plus the dairy and meat sections.
Beyond the overwhelming health benefits, plant-based foods have shown to be just as beneficial for protecting our environment, by significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions, conserving water and arable land, preventing further creation of dead zones in the oceans, and by creating cleaner air! Plants are a win-win for us and the planet! Happy eating everyone!