So when I originally decided to start this site I was going to make it just about eating a vegan or vegetarian whole food plan based diet. But as I have evolved I realize that it is not up to me on how you decide to eat and what choices you make. It's up to you to make the wisest and best decisions for you and your family. Most of the data here is based on what I have studied and believe to be optimal forms of health and therefore are mostly vegan and vegetarian based. I do however, realize how personal food is even within my own family unit so I will put additional types of recipes here in the near future. In the mean time if you are interested in getting some plant based meals that also incorporate meat as part of the diet check out Family Friendly Fat Burning Meals.
What I find to be the MOST important part of what "DIET" you choose is that you focus on eating REAL FOOD with a large percentage being plants, as often as possible which is actually a rare occurrence in our Westernized society!!! Did you know that 70% of the foods our children are eating in this country are processed foods?
And that is where the phrase Plant Based Diet comes in. Whole Plant Based Foods are foods that are in their natural state, unprocessed and unrefined. Foods that have one ingredient and you add other one ingredient items to it to create amazing meals. So for some of us that will mean a plant based vegan diet, for others it is a plant based vegetarian diet or a plant based diet that incorporates animal products as well. What I have learned even with the animal based plant based diet is that the largest percentage of it should come from vegetables. This is the consensus across the board. You can totally be a junk food overly processed food vegan which is no better than any other junk food diet. Or you could be a vegetarian that eats lots of processed past and cheese still not a healthy diet. Did you know that oreos are vegan? Did you also know that some cheese is made with something called rennet (sometimes labeled as enzymes ) which is from the lining of a baby calf? So are you truly a vegetarian? Processing foods can be an interesting issue.
Here is a list of real unprocessed plant based foods:
DOES THAT MEAN I CAN'T EAT PROCESSED FOODS?
It doesn't mean that. It just depends upon what type of results you are looking for, that is what will determine how much refined foods you bring into your daily life. What is a processed food? Examples would include anything that has multiple ingredients, like a box of macaroni and cheese, cereal, frozen dinner, packaged dips, salad dressings, the list goes on. Depending upon the manufacturer will determine how many ingredients are listed.
I personally don't like to call myself either vegan or vegetarian I like to say I am focused primarily on plant based whole foods, to me that has a healthier meaning. I have made the personal decision based on my genetics, the books I have read which are 13 years worth now, the environmental impact that an animal based diet implies, and the fact that I have never liked seeing an animal slaughtered even as a child. If you are interested in learning more about a plant based (vegan version of it) diet you can check out my ebook How To Start a Plant Based Diet, even if you don't decide to do it long term it's a great break from heavy foods.
I have also read the book The Blue Zones, Second Edition: 9 Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who've Lived the Longest of groups of people who have thrived and lived a long life while incorporating SMALL amounts of animal product into their diets. But their lifestyles also had something to do with this and once again it is MOSTLY plant based. It is not a sedentary lifestyle but one filled with activity.
So there are many parts to this puzzle, it's up to you to keep looking and working on improving your health. I hope we can help you achieve success.