New Beginnings: The Ultimate Plant-Based Eating Guide for Newbies

New Beginnings: The Ultimate Plant-Based Eating Guide for Newbies
Prime Roots

by Prime Roots
January 09, 2021 5 min read

It’s time for a fresh start once again! You’ve been ready to kick 2020 to the curb for eight or nine months now.
  • So have we.
  • And now’s your chance to make a positive shift in your health while helping to reduce the effects of climate change. Because if you can’t control anything else in your life, you know you can control how you eat and how you impact the environment.
  • Prime Roots isn’t all about “go green or go home.” We’re about meeting people where they are and helping them make better food choices. We’re a foodie team of vegans, vegetarians, flexitarians, and folks who are just doing their best with what they’ve got.
  • We figure our community of mission-minded foodies is kind of the same.
  • So we wanted to give beginning plant-based eaters a short and sweet guide to helping you succeed on your plant-based journey!
  • Let’s get started!

Nom nom on veggies

We know you’ve been told to eat your veggies at least once in your life. We also know there are a lot of folks who don’t care for veggies all that much.
  • That’s ok! 
  • For those of you who love all the vegetables:
  1. Fill at least half your plate with vegetables at every meal. And eat those before you eat anything else!
  2. Buy in season from your local farmer’s market.  Produce can get expensive, but buying in season is cheaper, and buying local is better for the environment.
  3. Taste the rainbow.  And we don’t mean with Skittles. If you love lots of different types of veggies, be sure to incorporate various colored ones in each meal.
  4. Beans are your friend:  Lima, peas, lentils, pinto, kidney, black. Alllllll the beans!
  • For our veggie shy folks:
  1. Try a new vegetable every week.
  2. Google creative ways to incorporate that one vegetable into several dishes throughout the week (or disguise it).
  3. Stock up on the vegetables that you  do like and plop those babies into every meal you possibly can!
  4. You can partake of all the beans too! Who doesn’t like  some kind of bean, right?
          • Vegetables are full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Many even offer a significant source of protein, guessed it, beans. But spinach, broccoli, brussels, potatoes, and asparagus are also high in protein (and better for you than meat).

          Go vegetarian one night a week

          The key to going plant-based is to do it in increments, not all at once. Especially if you’re traditionally a meat and potatoes kind of eater.
          • Reduce the overwhelm by committing to just one fully plant-based meal each week. It’s not as hard as you think.
          • First of all, if you’re struggling to find the perfect plant-based meal and are overwhelmed by all the books, websites, and resources out there, check out the Prime Roots inclusive foodie Facebook group, I Can’t Believe It’s Not Meat! Shoot us a message and tell us what you need or search through all the amazing plant-based recipes from us and other members of the community for ideas!
          • On the flip side, you could also try one of our delicious plant-based meals if you’re not ready to commit your whole family to food they may not like!

          Flip how you think about meat

          Typically, meat, whether it’s conventional animal protein or not, is the centerpiece of your meal. 
          • We challenge you to flip the switch on how you think about and treat your meat! You can make meat the “side dish” or garnish of your plate instead of the big attraction.
          • Or, if you’re not ready to think about your meat in that way, don’t marry the idea. Instead, cook half the amount of meat you normally would. Alternatively, you can cook the same amount of meat and only put half or a quarter of a serving on your plate.
          • At a restaurant? Ask the server to put half the meat portion of your meal in a box before they ever bring it out to the table. Feeling bold? Double up on the veggie sides or substitute that heart-clogging mac n cheese for a better-for-you vegetable!

          Get your grains

          Besides providing you with a healthy dose of protein, good grains help you feel fuller longer, reduce cholesterol, control blood sugar, and help curb those carb cravings!
          • Side note: Pack quinoa, oatmeal, barley, or buckwheat into your breakfast along with some healthy nuts and fresh or frozen fruit and get the energy boost you need to crush your day!
          • Here’s a list of good-for-you grains that you can use in almost any dish:
          • 1. Instead of white rice >>> choose whole grain brown, black, red, or wild rice.
          • 2. Quinoa  is a great grain and substitute for rice.Quinoa is also gluten-free!
          • 3. Bulgar  is fantastic in soups, stuffed vegetables, and salads.
          • 4. Whole-wheat pastas  are an easy replacement for processed white pasta.
          • 5. Whole-grain breads  offer tons of nutrition and aren’t chemically bleached like white bread is.
          • 6. Buckwheat  is perfect for pancakes and other breakfast meals!
          • Often, when new plant-based eaters think of food, they immediately think of fruits and veggies, but grains are obviously plants too. And there are tons of great options to choose from to replace the processed, chemically treated grains you’re probably used to.

          Healthy(er) desserts are a thing

          We know, we know. Almost no one eats desserts with thoughts of being or staying healthy, much less being plant-based.
          • But we’re here to tell you that you really can have your cake and eat it too! Even on a plant-based diet!
          • The responsible side of us wants to tell you to chomp down on fruit to curb your sweet tooth. But the realistic side of us knows that no one wants to do that. There are plenty of healthy plant-based dessert options out there!
          • And because we understand that being a new plant-based eater can be overwhelming, we’re dropping the link to one of our favorite plant-based bakers! You can find everything from cookies to pies that are vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian, and dairy free here!
          • The moral of this story or...erm, guide? More veggies, fruits, grains and dessert. Less animal protein.
          • Feeling super duper bold and ready to take on the world this New Year? Check out all the plant-based meats and meals Prime Roots  has to offer! We’re reimagining meat for people and planet by creating whole food plant-based proteins that mimic the taste and texture of the conventional proteins you’re accustomed to!
          • Or join our inclusive community of mission-minded foodies by dishing your email and zip deets below! Be in the know when we offer monthly freebies and giveaways and get invited to our exclusive online and in person events! It’s free to join and we promise we don’t bite.

          Check out our FAQs for more info.
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