7 Essential Foods For Creating Vegan Meals – Saturday Strategy
POSTED ON February 18, 2016 BY Melissa Labak and Justin Robinson
I am so excited to have some very special guests this week. Two of our amazing ambassadors, Justin Robinson and Melissa LaBak, have a wealth of knowledge and today, they are going to share just a glimpse of that with you.
One of the most popular diets in the world today is veganism. This diet focuses mainly on whole plant-based foods and excludes all things meat or animal, including eggs, honey, dairy and anything else produced directly by animals.
This concept is appealing to many people, particularly for those who are looking to develop better health habits in their lives. Cutting off meat from your diet, however, can be a struggle, especially if you have lived your whole life eating meats and dairy products without giving it much of a second thought.
By now, you’ve probably heard of Meatless Monday – and maybe you’ve even adopted this into your weekly meal plan as well!
But did you know, Meatless Monday is NOT a new concept?
“During World War I, the U.S. Food Administration urged families to reduce consumption of key staples to aid the war effort. “Food Will Win the War,” the government proclaimed, and “Meatless Monday” and “Wheatless Wednesday” were introduced to encourage Americans to do their part. The effect was overwhelming; more than 13 million families signed a pledge to observe the national meatless and wheatless conservation days.”
“The campaign returned during World War II when President Franklin D. Roosevelt relaunched it to help that war’s efforts on the home front. In the immediate post-war years, President Harry S. Truman continued the campaign to help feed war-ravaged Europe.”
“Meatless Monday was revived in 2003 by former ad man turned health advocate Sid Lerner, in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for a Livable Future. Reintroduced as a public health awareness campaign, Meatless Monday addresses the prevalence of preventable illnesses associated with excessive meat consumption. With the average American eating as much as 75 more pounds of meat each year than in generations past, our message of “one day a week, cut out meat” is a way for individuals to do something good for themselves and for the planet.”
Whether you are a vegan or you are just trying to incorporate more plant-based foods into your diet, we are here to give you some ideas and help get you started by sharing thetop 7 foods you must have in your kitchen!All of these foods are extremely nutritious and delicious and can revolutionize the whole meaning of plant-based in your life.
And you don’t have to be vegan to reap the rewards so eat up! Enjoy the gifts Mother Nature has provided all of us… from the comfort of your very own kitchen.
At the top of the list today – Kale! Kale is one of the most nutrient dense foods on the earth. It’s low calorie and packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. You’ll get a boost of chlorophyll, a phytonutrient that feeds your blood cells energy to keep your immune system strong and working properly.
Use it in your soups, smoothies, salads and green juice of course!
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is an essential for weight loss and a healthy body. The MCT’s (medium chain triglycerides) in coconut oil increases the body’s metabolic rate (the rate at which our body burns calories) by removing stress on the pancreas.
Use it as a substitute for butter on toast or sweet potatoes. It pairs well with cinnamon.
Revered by the Ancient Inca’s and today’s health guru’s, Quinoa is a top superfood. Quinoa is gluten free and it is actually not a grain at all! It is a close relative of spinach, beets and chard. And it’s actually a seed! Quinoa gives you 29% of your daily needs for magnesium, a mineral essential for protecting against type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Tip:Make a big batch for the week and toss it on your salads or use as a substitute for rice in a stirfry.
4. Raw Nuts And Seeds
Packed with protein to jazz up any meal, try adding these guys to your daily recipes. Hemp seeds in particular are our favorite because they have the perfect 3:1 ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which promote cardiovascular health. Hemp also contains Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA), an essential fatty acid that balances hormones.
5. Nutritional Yeast
This “cheesy” tasting protein is a must for any vegan. Don’t worry though, this is not a food that will promote candida growth. Nutritional yeast is an excellent source of B12, which is necessary for vegans. It comes in a powder and flake form.
Sprinkle over salads and soups. Perfect for making salad dressings.
6. Almond Butter
Almond butter is more expensive than peanut butter, but it’s totally worth it! Almonds are extremely high in vitamin E, which is amazing for your skin.
Use in smoothies, dips, power muffins and desserts. Great as a snack with apple slices, celery, or carrots.
7. Dried Beans And Legumes
Dried beans and legumes are great for a source of protein and fiber. Our favorite here are fava beans – they are loaded with protein! Just a quarter of a cup contains 10 grams of protein!
Use fava beans in your hummus, on salads, or as a side dish.
Each and every one of these foods is extremely versatile and can be used in a number of different ways! If you need some starter meal ideas, give one or all of these delicious recipes a try:
No matter what your thoughts may be about excluding meat in your diet, everyone can benefit from throwing some more plant-based foods into their life. These foods are natural gifts to you from the very soil of the earth and can and certainly will be worth your while if you give them a proper try!
A note from Melissa and Justin:
We hope you enjoyed this content! Staying healthy and spreading positivity is our mission. For more health tips from us check our of health blog at Organic Body Now and our brand new consciousness project The Crystal Grid.
Thanks for tuning in! Let us know in the comments below your favorite vegan recipe. If you are a full time vegan or have every tried this lifestyle, we’d love to know how it’s working (or has worked) for you.
And if you’d like to know more about veganism, let us know that too!
Justin Robinson and Melissa LaBak are organic health enthusiasts and truth seekers from San Diego, CA. Melissa is a Certified Nutritionist, model and designs custom made healing crystal jewelry. Justin is a Celebrity Personal Trainer and former fitness competitor. With their combined knowledge and their love for spreading health knowledge, they created Organic Body Now, where they offer expert holistic advice and plant-based meal plans. They are currently working on The Crystal Grid Project, to spread love and consciousness around the World.
Connect with them: www.TheCrystalGrid.com
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