Plant-based eating has become increasingly popular recently, and with good reason. Not only is it beneficial for the planet, but a plant-based diet can be hugely beneficial to your health, too. So should schools make plant-based meals available in the cafeteria? At least one California kid says so.
Here are some of the benefits of eating green:
Weight Loss & Management
One of the biggest benefits of eating a plant-based diet is that it can help you to lose weight or manage your weight more easily. By cutting out processed food and animal products from your diet, you can focus on filling up on whole foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts and seeds. These ingredients are packed full of vitamins and minerals but are low in calories. So you can fill up without feeling guilty! Plus, studies have linked plant-based diets with lower body mass index (BMI), waist circumference and cholesterol levels—all key indicators of health and wellbeing. With childhood obesity growing year after year, maintaining a healthy weight becomes increasingly important for students.
Improved Heart Health
A plant-based diet isn’t just good for maintaining weight; it’s also great for maintaining heart health too. Plant-based diets are rich in antioxidants which help reduce inflammation throughout the body—including the arteries—which helps keep them healthy and functioning properly. Studies have found that people who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet tend to have lower blood pressure than those who eat animal products regularly, as well as lower cholesterol levels which also helps to protect against cardiovascular disease.
Reduced Risk Of Cancer
Eating a plant-based diet can also reduce the risk of cancer due to its high content of antioxidants which help to prevent cell damage caused by free radicals in our bodies. Studies have shown that people who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet may be less likely to develop certain types of cancer compared to meat eaters. This could be due to the fact that these diets are usually higher in fiber which helps keep us regular and flush out toxins from our digestive system more efficiently. Additionally, many plant foods contain compounds known as phytochemicals which may help protect against cancer growth in our cells. Read the full article about this high school girl’s mission on our sister site, Irvine Weekly, here.