Eating plants all day keeps the doctor away
5 surprising reasons why eating more plants will keep you happy and healthy.
Most people think they are helpless against their genetic predisposition to certain conditions. You’ve actually got a lot more agency than you think, and it’s all about what you load onto your plate.
Here are five surprising reasons why eating more plants will keep you happy and healthy.
1. When it comes to fibre, plants rule
Not only does fibre protect against digestive tract disorders, it also helps us maintain a healthy hormone balance. Fibre rids our bodies of bile acids before they bind with bacteria to become nasty cancer-causing chemicals.
Foods that are closest to their natural state - unrefined and unpeeled - are highest in fiber. That’s why whole grains, beans, peas, lentils, vegetables and fruits are the best source, making it super easy to hit the recommended 30-40 grams of cancer-fighting fibre per day by piling your plate high with plants.
2. Plant fats are good fats
Trans and saturated fats are two of the major nasties linked to high cholesterol and heart disease, and herein lies another of plants’ many superpowers. Plants contain good fats and are typically a lot lower in fat too, energising your body with brain fuel and giving your skin a glow rather than clogging up arteries!
3. A colourful plate is packed with cancer-fighting nutrients
Eating rainbows rocks - and not just because of the unicorns. With a colourful array of fruits and vegetables in your diet, you’re absorbing carotenoids which kick cancer’s ass to the kerb. Beta-carotene (found in dark green and yellow veggies and converted to Vitamin A or used as an antioxidant in the body), flavones and indoles (found in cruciferous greens) and vitamin C (found in citrus fruits as well as many vegetables) are all shown to ignite anti-cancer activities in our cells.
4. Plants kick your immune system into high gear
Every vegetable, whole grain, fruit and legume has its own means of boosting your immune system. Oats and barley contain beta-glucans that are loaded with antimicrobial, anticarcinogenic and antioxidant properties, mushrooms are rich in selenium, which hikes the production and activity of white blood cells, and spinach is an amazing source of folate, a B vitamin that helps repair DNA and support the body in producing new cells. The list goes on, but you get the idea, so we’ll let you get back to munching your carrots.
5. The impact on your health is immediate & dramatic
Plants don’t hold a grudge and work quickly to improve your health. A study comparing different diets to “see whose diet kicked more cancer butt” found that it took only two weeks to see a significant change in how a plant-fueled blood stream slowed down the growth of cancer cells in a petri dish. Imagine the impact long term!
The World Cancer Research Foundation (WCRF) recommend increasing your consumption of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and pulses (legumes) to reduce cancer risk as part of a report released yesterday, placing the power in your fork to amp up your body’s defence - all thanks to the power of plants.
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