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7 Changes You’ll Undergo When You Stop Eating Meat

7 Changes You’ll Undergo When You Stop Eating Meat

It is always said that going vegetarian will make you lack important nutrients. While the American Dietetic Association clarified that “appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases”. A study done in 2013 also proved that vegetarians live longer than non-vegetarians by almost 20%. Below are the specific great changes you’ll undergo when you stop eating meat.

1. Your Skin Will Start to Glow

The benefits of going meat-free can be external too. According to holistic nutritionist Susan Tucker MD, the founder of Green Beat Life, the higher amounts of minerals, antioxidants, and fiber included in plant-based diets help detoxify and lead to clearer skin. Plant-based diets can lead to the clearing of common skin problems like eczema and acne.

2. Your Body Will Be Less Acidic

Tucker explains that processed foods, and animal products, like milk and cheese, lead to an acidic environment in the body. Over-acidification causes commonly felt symptoms like nausea, fatigue, headaches, and fogginess. Plant-based diets are more alkaline, counteracting over-acidification and its unwanted symptoms. Consuming a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes, and sprouted grains can help boost energy and clarity.

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3. You’ll Start Consuming the Right Types of Protein

A common misconception of transitioning from a meat-based diet to a plant-based one is that your body won’t receive the protein it needs to function properly. McMacken explains that the average meat and vegetable eater consumes more than 1.5-times the amount of protein it should from animal sources. Excess protein is then stored as fat and can result in weight gain and more serious issues like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

The protein you consume from a plant-based diet actually helps prevent a number of chronic diseases. According to Janice Stranger PhD, author of The Perfect Formula Diet, the longest-living people on earth receive 9-10% of their total calories from protein. The average American now receives roughly 15- 20% of their total calories from protein.

4. Your Cholesterol Levels Will Decrease

Like inflammation, high blood cholesterol levels can lead to stroke and heart disease. Animal products, like meats and cheeses, are high in the saturated fats that cause high cholesterol and ultimately harmful heart conditions.

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According to McMacken, studies consistently show that those who switch to a plant-based diet undergo a blood cholesterol drop of up to 35 percent. Plant-based diets are low in saturated fat and high in fiber — two characteristics that lead to dropping blood cholesterol levels.

5. You’ll Probably Lose Weight

There are a number of ways to lose weight when choosing a plant-based diet. Many lose weight when they first make the switch due to finding their protein in lower-calorie food sources, like tofu and other vegetarian-friendly products.

A recent study published by the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics showed that participants prescribed a vegetarian diet experienced an average weight loss of 7.5 pounds. Meals high in fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains can lead to even more rapid weight loss.

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6. You’ll Reduce Your Risk of Common Diseases

One of the biggest perks of making the change to a plant-based diet is that you’ll reduce inflammation in your body, and ultimately, reduce your risk of many serious diseases. According to board-certified internal medicine physician Michele McMacken MD, those who eat diets full of meats and highly processed foods experience elevated levels of inflammation. Chronic inflammation can lead to autoimmune diseases, diabetes, strokes, heart attacks, and a number of other serious conditions.

Naturally anti-inflammatory plant-based diets are full of phytonutrients, like antioxidants and fiber. They typically include fewer dietary elements that lead to chronic inflammation, like saturated fats and toxins.

7. You’ll Feel Better About Your Impact on the Environment

Choosing a plant-based diet has as much of a positive impact on the environment and wildlife as it does on you. According to a 2014 article published in Pacific Standard, animal agriculture is the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. The animal agriculture industry causes more greenhouse gas emissions than can be linked to all forms of transportation.

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The industry uses an irreplaceable amount of the earth’s forests, water, and wildlife habitats. Choosing to go plant-based means you’re taking a stand against the destruction of earth’s resources and its inhabitants.

Tips for Achieving Your Goal

Stopping your meat consumption “cold turkey” may not be easy. However, the Vegetarian Society offers some helpful tips for first-timers making the transition to a plant-based diet.

  1. Don’t feel like you have to make every change at once. If you’re having trouble cutting out meat entirely, start by reducing your meat consumption one meal at a time.
  2. Ask your doctor or a nutritionist for help. It can be difficult to know exactly how to stay healthy and energized on a plant-based diet at first. A qualified doctor or nutritionist can help you determine the difference between healthy choices and not-so-healthy ones.
  3. Go easy on yourself. It’s not easy for anyone to switch their diet in a day, so don’t be discouraged if you’re struggling to make the change. Go easy on yourself, give it another try if you have a “cheat day,” and refer back to the benefits of going plant-based for inspiration.

(https://www.vegsoc.org/goveggiehelp#)

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Last Updated on January 14, 2019

7 Ways To Make Exercise Fun For Everyone

7 Ways To Make Exercise Fun For Everyone

From Atkins to Paleo to eating gluten-free despite not being one of the rare few people afflicted with celiac disease, fad diets are everywhere. It drives me crazy because I believe these diets do more harm than good. Your body is made up of a variety of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals, and losing weight healthily isn’t possible when you fill your body with unnecessary synthetic plastics, sugars, and powders. There’s no easy button in life.

What you need to do is exercise, which isn’t very appealing to many people. Workouts take work, so there’s already a stigma involved in going to the gym. Starting a healthy workout regimen becomes easier when you make it fun. If you want to live long and prosper, get off the couch and try these methods to turn your workout into a playout.

1. Take the scenic route.

Walking is an easy way to transition to a healthy lifestyle, and it’s free. Not only do you burn calories (check out this calculator for how many calories you burn based on your weight), but you see the world in a different way. Hiking in nature is great if you have access to it, but don’t let living in an urban area deter you from walking.

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Whenever I’m creatively stuck I get my head straight by walking a couple of miles. It’s also how I discover new paths, meet new people, and stumble upon hole-in-the-wall spots I never would have found otherwise. You could drive past the same place every day and never appreciate the beauty, nor even notice it’s there.

2. Distract yourself.

No matter what exercise routine you choose, use the time to meditate. You may wonder how marathon runners are able to put so many miles on their bodies. It’s because the pain from running that you avoid is something they’ve learned to harness to enter a transcendental state. If you’re aware of the benefits of meditation and exercise but don’t have time to do both, you can combine them, killing two birds with one healthy stone.

3. Listen to music or podcasts.

There are few experiences in life more pleasurable than turning up the music and drowning out the world around you. With so many podcasts and music apps available on your smartphone, you can easily find entertainment options perfectly suited to your personal tastes. Never worry what people may think of you when working out;instead, crank up the volume and get lost in your own world. You’ll be in shape before you know it.

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4. Bring a friend.

Some people can’t go anywhere alone. While I highly recommend dining out and seeing a movie in a theater alone, having company while exercising is very helpful. It allows you to pace yourself with someone else, and gives you a coach to motivate and push harder than you may have on your own.

Many exercises are safer when done with a friend, and some sports can only be played with another person. Involving others in your goals can mean the difference between success and failure. Just remember to continue exercising if the other person flakes, or they’ll be in control of your health.

5. Accessorize.

There are accessories that can make exercise easier, and sometimes buying a new toy can add some much-needed fun to your routine. With apps like RunKeeper and Nike+, your smartphone is capable of tracking your vitals and progress. Wrist weights can add a new dimension to your workout, and, if you exercise at night, a headlamp can help you see what’s in front of you so you don’t trip.

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For urban runners and power-walkers, one of the biggest obstacles is other people. It’s difficult to get in your meditative zone and enjoy your music when you constantly have to dodge people. To resolve this vexing issue, Runbell, a startup in Tokyo, has developed the runner’s version of the bicycle bell. With this lightweight brass bell warning people you’re approaching from behind, you’re free to maintain your transcendental state while continuing your workout. Head to their Kickstarter campaign to pledge your support.

6. Compete.

A little healthy competition can motivate you to push yourself further in your workout regimen. There are apps like Zombies, Run! which turns your run into a video game, and MyFitnessPal which allows you to connect with others in the exercise community. Whether you’re directly competing with a friend, an online community, or against your previous self, setting goals is the key to reaching them. Running with no destination can feel like an impossible task, and it’s easy to get distracted.

7. Relax.

The best part about exercising is how much you enjoy the downtime. If you think laying on your couch all day is enjoyable, it has nothing on that hour you spend as a couch potato after a rigorous workout. Jay-Z said it best, “in order to experience joy, you need pain.” The harder you push yourself while exercising, the better you’ll feel when you’re relaxing.

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With that said, don’t relax too much, or it loses the effect. It’s okay to indulge every so often. Treat yourself to some junk food you’re craving, imbibe a drink here and there, and spend a day vegging out on your couch. Staying healthy doesn’t have to be torture. Just turn down when you can and dedicate some time to better the health of your body. You only get one.

Featured photo credit: tpsdave via pixabay.com

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