Top 7 Vegan Foods You Need To Add To Your Diet
There’s no doubt adding a diet filled with vegan foods can seem monotonous. Also, not as healthy as a diverse meat-filled protein-packed one.
However, just because you’ve stopped eating meat, you don’t have to sacrifice your taste and pleasure. You can still enjoy tasty and delicious meals if you’ve decided to go vegan.
Whether you decide to adopt a vegan lifestyle or not, you should consider adding these vegan foods into your diet.
Anyway You Look At It, Vegan Foods Are Good For You
In the past, I switched to a vegan lifestyle and, unfortunately, had to surrender it due to health reasons. Subsequently, this didn’t mean I had to quit eating vegan foods and incorporating them daily to my diet.
Wholey, any way you look at it, eating a diet rich in vegan foods is good for you and rather tasty as well. Either way, incorporating these healthy and delicious foods into your diet is a good thing!
For the past two years, I improved my diet significantly and lost a lot of weight, but I realized it lacked some essential food items. With that said, I made a list of some vegan foods I decided to bring back into my diet daily.
Below, you’ll see some vegan foods you should think about adding to your food repertoire too.
1. Fruits and Vegetables
As you know,fFruits and vegetables are a staple food items in the vegan diet. Fruits are the go-to food of many vegans. When you are on a vegan diet, you may have to modify your fruit intake combinations.
For example, if you typically eat bananas and berries with Greek yogurt for breakfast, you’ll have to take it with a non-dairy item. Thus, all dairy food is out of the picture when you are on a vegan diet.
Obviously, all types of vegetables are suitable to add to a vegan diet. Don’t forget to balance your vegetable choices to ensure you consume all the necessary essential nutrients that your body needs.
For instance, broccoli and bok choy contain reasonable amounts of calcium. More so, you can add them to your diet as they are a good source of calcium.
With that said, as far as vegan foods go, I started adding more fruits and vegetables to my diet every day. Don’t forget to create a meal plan that adds more of them to your family’s diet too.
2. Legumes and Pulses
Usually, meat is the best source of protein. Cutting out meat from your diet means you’ll have to supplement with other options. Hence, consuming enough proteins is critical in the vegan diet.
So, if you are looking for a vegan protein source, legumes and pulses are a good option. Legumes are a vegan food that offers low-fat, plant-based protein for your body. Aside from being rich in plant-based protein, legumes have an array of nutritional values.
More so, legumes and pulses also contain complex carbohydrates that can help maintain stable blood sugar levels. Simply stated, these vegan foods fit perfectly into any diet.
Here are some excellent examples of legumes that you should add to your diet.
- Beans – Beans such as black beans, cannellini beans, red kidney beans, northwestern beans, and other varieties fit perfectly to any vegan dish you prepare. They contain the right amounts of thiamin and folate. They also contain about 15 grams of plant-based protein per 1 cup. Apart from it, beans are also rich in dietary fiber, potassium, and zinc. You can prepare beans in a variety of ways or use them as a topping for vegan recipes such as vegan ramen. You can enjoy the hot and delicious black bean soup in the cold winter evenings!
- Lentils – One cup of lentil is enough to give you more folate and thiamin than any other type of legume. Lentils are also rich in iron, magnesium, and phosphorus. You can try adding lentils to your pasta sauce when making vegan spaghetti; it should give you reasonable amounts of plant-protein.
- Soybeans – Soybeans can serve as a great snack between meals. You can munch some soybeans and feel energized with the nutrients- enriched snack. Half a cup of soybeans can provide you 8 grams of protein, 4 grams of dietary fiber, and the right amount of omega-3 fatty acids. They are also rich in calcium and riboflavin.
You can easily add these delicious vegan foods to your diet daily by making soups and salads the whole family will love!
3. Whole Grains
Regardless if you are a vegan or not, you can’t take out the whole grains from your diet. Whole grains play an essential part in our diet. More so, this is because whole grains provide numerous nutritional benefits for our bodies. They are rich in dietary fiber, iron, as well as other vitamins such as Vitamin E and Vitamin B.
Vegans have a choice to select any item from a wide variety of whole-grain foods. For example, wheat breads, pastas, barley, oats, bulgur, millet, and spelt (Spelt, ancient whole grain grown in many parts of the world.) to name a few. So, go on, devour that scrumptious Whole-Wheat Spaghetti with Broccoli, Chickpeas, and Garlic recipe!
4. Brown Rice – Vegan Foods We Love!
If you are shopping for vegan foods, you shouldn’t forget to include brown rice in your list. Brown rice is healthier than white rice because not processed like white rice.
You can also try alternating between brown and white rice, but if possible, we suggest that you should stick with brown rice alone because of superior nutritional benefits.
Additionally, brown rice is rich in minerals and vitamins that promote bone formation such as manganese, calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D. You may experiment with different cuisines, try out this easy Japanese style brown rice.
5. Whole Wheat and Whole Grain Bread
Whole wheat and whole grain bread provide more nutritional benefits than enriched white bread. Moreover, grains make for a fantastic array of vegan foods to add to your diet. Incorporating them means a step towards a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.
You see, the denser the bread, the more nutritional value it offers. One slice of whole wheat or whole grain bread can give you 3 grams of protein, iron, and other B-vitamins. That’s how nutritious these breads are! You can always store bread in your freezer and save them for another day.
6. Vegan Mayo
First, if you never tried vegan mayo, you need to give it a chance. It’s so delicious and much healthier for you as well. My favorite vegan mayo became a household favorite and we always have several flavors stocked.
Vegan mayo is another staple food for vegans like yourself. You can use it as a condiment for your whole wheat or whole grain bread while making veggie sandwiches.
In addition, you can also use vegan mayo for other recipes as well. You can use it as a dressing for your cold pasta or in veggie salad recipes.
7. Nutritional Yeast
Nutritional yeast is another wonderful staple of vegan foods. It is rich in protein and B-complex vitamins, making it an ideal alternative for cheese, or you may even use it as a condiment. It provides proper amounts of Vitamin B12, an essential vitamin for a healthy vegan lifestyle.
Another name for nutritional yeast is Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Often you’ll see it featured in recipes to bake bread and brew beer. You can find it sold as flakes, powder, or granules. Typically, you’ll find it located in the spice section of health food or local grocery stores.
Vegan Foods – Summing It All Up
Now, you can start to add these good for you vegan foods to your diet with confidence! I know my diet improved dramatically by adding these wonderfully nutritious foods. Do you have any favorite vegan foods listed in this article?
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