What is the Planetary Health Diet and Where Did it Come From?

There’s a new diet that’s not only less-restrictive, but good for you and the planet! This isn’t something that was thrown together quickly by some random dude in his basement. This diet is the brain child of both environmental and nutritional specialists.

Feeding The Many & Save The Planet

One of the biggest problems we face is feeding the nearly 8 billion humans on planet Earth. The planetary health diet takes into account both human nutritional requirements and environmental concerns. It increases the amount of grains, beans, and vegetables we should consume in a day and decreases meat. But even if you’re not really into the whole “save the planet” thing, there are other benefits to this diet!

Eat Less Meat

By introducing more plants into your diet, you’re inadvertently decreasing the amount of saturated fat and cholesterol, which lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease. If enough people adopt this diet, we’ll not only decrease stress on the environment, but on the healthcare system as well.

Healthy Within

Another benefit of this diet is the recovery of our microbiome. Studies have shown that plants and whole grains support a healthy gut microbiome. Meat products encourage the growth of harmful bacteria. Given how much processed junk food is available, many of us most likely have disrupted microbiomes already. And remember, the longer you stay on a poor diet, the harder it will be to reverse the damage. While the implications of dysbiosis are still being studied, many researchers have seen a correlation between neurological diseases (like MS and Parkinson’s) and an unbalanced microbiome.

Balanced Meals

Some people might be worried that this plant-heavy diet lacks protein and certain vitamins. Fear not! You’ll be able to get enough protein from beans. And if you’re not a fan of legumes, load up on shiitake mushrooms and nutritional yeast. Both contain enough protein and B12 (especially the yeast) to sustain you.

There are easy ways to switch to this diet. Start by substituting meat with high-protein, non-animal alternatives. Instead of chicken breast, try some stuffed portobello mushrooms with quinoa or rice. Instead of a hamburger, try a black bean based veggie burger. Treat meat and dairy products like you would an expensive luxury item. It’s a treat every now and then, but not an everyday dietary necessity.

What is the Planetary Health Diet and Where Did it Come From?

Orginally published on: https://www.cosmopolitan.com/uk/body/diet-nutrition/a29893620/planetary-health-diet/

Recipe:

Baked stuffed cabbage parcels with tomato and chilli

Ingredients:

For the cabbage parcels
1 large red cabbage
Spray oil
1 red onion, diced
1 clove garlic, pureed
1 tbsp tomato puree
200 g soya mince
1 tbsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
For the sauce
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 red onion, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
2 red chilli, thinly diced
2 red peppers, diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
4 baked sweet potatoes or brown rice, to serve

Method
For the cabbage rolls
Peel off the outer leaves from the cabbage and blanche in boiling water to soften them up. Chill in cold water, drain and set aside.
In a saucepan, heat some spray oil, add the onion and cook until soft and coloured. Add the garlic and tomato puree and cook for a further 1 minute. Add the soya mince and chopped parsley and combine thoroughly.
Stuff the cabbage leaves with the soya mix, folding the leaves over to form parcels and put into an ovenproof dish join side down.

For the sauce
In another saucepan, heat 2 tbsp vegetable oil over a medium heat, add the onion and cook until soft. Add the garlic and chilli and cook for 1 minute. Add the red pepper and carrot and cook for 2 minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and bring to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the basil and check the seasoning.

Pour over the cabbage leaves and bake in the oven on a medium heat for 20 minutes.

Serve with baked sweet potatoes or brown rice.

vegan baked stuffed cabbage parcels with tomato and chilli with a basil garnish in a white bowl on a grey background

vegansociety.com

 

 

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