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5 science-backed health benefits of plant-based proteins in daily diet – Moneycontrol

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What to eat: Plant-based protein sources, such as beans, lentils, and tofu, are typically low in saturated fat and cholesterol, which help lower the risk of heart disease

What to eat: Plant-based protein sources, such as beans, lentils, and tofu, are typically low in saturated fat and cholesterol, which help lower the risk of heart disease

In recent years, the popularity of plant-based diets has soared, with many people choosing to incorporate more plant-based protein into their meals. This shift isn’t just a trend; it’s rooted in science-backed health benefits.

Plant protein is simply a meaningful food source of protein which is from plants. This group can include pulses, tofu, soya, tempeh, seitan, nuts, seeds, certain grains and even peas. Pulses are a large group of plants, which include chickpeas, lentils, beans (such as black, kidney and adzuki beans) and split peas. Adding plant-based proteins into your diet doesn’t mean giving up meat entirely; it simply involves diversifying your protein sources to include more plant-based options.

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Here are five compelling reasons why plant-based protein is a stellar choice for your overall well-being:

Heart health: Plant-based protein sources, such as beans, lentils, and tofu, are typically low in saturated fat and cholesterol. Research indicates that diets rich in these plant-based proteins can help lower the risk of heart disease. Additionally, foods like nuts and seeds contain heart-healthy fats, fibre, and antioxidants, further promoting cardiovascular health.

Weight management: Plant-based proteins are often lower in calories and higher in fibre compared to animal-based proteins. High-fibre foods keep you feeling fuller for longer, reducing the likelihood of overeating and aiding weight management efforts. Additionally, incorporating plant-based proteins into your diet can help maintain muscle mass while supporting fat loss.

Improved digestion: Many plant-based protein sources are rich in dietary fibre, which plays a crucial role in digestive health. Fibre helps regulate bowel movements, prevents constipation, and supports a healthy gut microbiome. Legumes, whole grains, and vegetables are excellent sources of fibre, promoting optimal digestive function and overall well-being.

Lower risk of chronic diseases: Consuming plant-based proteins is associated with a reduced risk of various chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, certain cancers, and hypertension. Plant foods are naturally rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and phytonutrients, which have anti-inflammatory properties and help protect against cellular damage caused by free radicals. By prioritising plant-based protein sources, you can support your body’s defences against chronic illnesses.

Environmental sustainability: Opting for plant-based proteins over animal-based ones can have significant environmental benefits. Livestock farming is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation, and water pollution. In contrast, plant-based protein production generally requires fewer resources, produces fewer emissions, and has a smaller ecological footprint. By choosing plant-based protein sources, you can contribute to environmental conservation efforts and promote a more sustainable food system.

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