January may be dreary, but there's a whole lot of sunshine filling our fruit bowls. We caught up with the team at breast cancer charity, Walk the Walk, about getting the most out of a plant-based diet.
Charity Walk the Walk grants funds for research into prevention and treatment, and they also help improve the lives of those living with cancer – a fundamental part of this starts with food.
Their ethos and philosophy is that by encouraging people to champion their own wellbeing through diet and exercise we become healthier and fitter.
Whether you live to eat or eat to live, food is essential to our lives and one of the most important influencers of our health and wellbeing. It's also a hugely emotive and attention grabbing topic, with barely a day going by without a headline about the latest nutritional discovery.
Nicky Robinson, MSc Nutritional Therapy, is the Nutrition Lead at Penny Brohn UK, working closely with Walk the Walk. Nicky is passionate about nutrition research and making healthy eating easy and enjoyable - uniting with Walk the Walk, here Nicky gives some tips for getting the best from a more plant-based diet.
“While there is a lot of confusing information on food and diet, one fast growing trend that everyone agrees is good for us, is embracing more plants in our diet! Natural, whole plant foods, such as vegetables, fruits, beans and pulses, nuts, seeds and whole grains are packed full of nutrients including vitamins, minerals, fibre and other unique plant compounds which study after study show have extensive benefits for our health. But as with any dietary approach, there are some principles that can help us get the most from enjoying plant-based foods. At Penny Brohn UK we recommend people consider 3 key tips:
- Variety – having a diverse diet that includes many different types of food means we can benefit from a wide range of nutrients, as well as support healthy gut bacteria. This is especially key for vegetables and fruits which are nature’s true superfoods. Choosing foods in season, trying out varieties you don’t normally eat and introducing more herbs and spices are great ways increase diversity in your diet.
- Moderation – it’s great to enjoy plenty of nourishing plant foods but eating too much of any single food can be unbalanced and leave little room to benefit from others.
- Colour – ‘Eat a Rainbow’ is one of the best diet mantras to emerge in recent years, and certainly part of Walk the Walk’s philosophy, again vegetables and fruit are the stars here! Wonderful pigments in brightly coloured natural produce are unique plant chemicals (phytonutrients), with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and immune supportive properties that may reduce the risk of many chronic diseases.
Make the most of the winter citrus season with our Seasonal Citrus Bundle