Welcome to the first in a series of blogposts from Ethiopian Teff Crisp company Founder, Valerie Bowden. Given the love the UK Vegan population has for our healthy snacks, and her own experience as a plant based vegan, we thought it apt to kick the series off with a post on the benefits of eating more vegan food, even if you’re not vegan…..
Over 3 million Brits have gone completely vegan. If you’re thinking, “I could never give up cheese, icecream, and burgers,” don’t worry. You don’t have to go 100% vegan.
Even trading out just a couple snacks per week for more plant based ones could give you greater energy and health benefits such as:
- Get your “five-a-day”
In 2017, only 29% of adults in England were eating the recommended daily five portions of fruit and vegetables. Lower your chance for heart disease, stroke, and cancer by swapping out your mid-day candy bar for dried fruit.
It’s just as portable, no mess, and still satisfies your sweet tooth. A portion of dried fruit is around 30 grams. Check off almost two of your servings and be 40% to your daily goal by eating just one of our dried pineapple packets.
- Healthier fats
Multiple studies have shown that a diet higher in monounsaturated fats (known as MUFAs) leads to more weight loss than diets comprising the same amount of calories.
If you want to reap the benefits of this special type of fat, you won’t find it in meat. Instead, you’ll find it highly concentrated in certain types of nuts. For example, our Kenyan Macadamia nuts contain about 30 grams of MUFAs which is 6x more than chicken!
- All those antioxidants
These free-radical scavengers fight heart disease, cancer, arthritis, stroke, and an entire slew of other diseases.
If you’re worried that you’ll have to eat an endless amount of salad to get a basic amount, think again. Cacao nibs are one of the most potent sources containing 40x more antioxidants than even blueberries.
- More vitamins
Not all vegan foods are created equally. But if you focus on high quality ones like nuts, seeds, veggies, and fruits, you are bound to get a healthy dose of vitamins. Dried mangos for example are full of Vitamin A, Iron, Calcium, and Vitamin C. Skip your daily crisps for some dried fruit and see if you can tell a difference in your metabolism, digestion, and skin.
- Less calories
Most vegan foods contain less calories than traditional snacks like cheese and yogurt. Just because you’re saving calories, doesn’t mean you’re giving up taste though. If you need your chocolate fix, try our Dark Chocolate Covered Raw Organic Cacao Beans from Uganda.
- Bigger muscles
Chronic inflammation is linked to joint injuries, low testosterone levels and an impaired ability to gain muscle. Studies show direct correlation between people with high inflammation and an inability to increase strength.
Eating an anti-inflammatory diet high in nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, and beans can help. Before and after the gym, experiment with snacks like hummus, carrot sticks, fruit, and nuts and see if you can feel the difference.
- Better for the Environment
The meat and dairy industries are some of the worst contributors to our environment. New research reveals that going vegan could help cut our greenhouse emissions by half.
This means that you’re not only choosing your food three to five times per day, but you are also deciding the health of our planet.
So if you’re not ready to give up meat just yet, don’t forget that even the most carnivorous diet can still benefit from some great vegan snacks. Aim to incorporate more and more each week. Leave a comment below and tell us which snacks you are going to try!
Author: Valerie Bowden is a plant-based vegan married to a very non-vegan husband. She is the founder of a teff crisp startup in Ethiopia. Before that she spent 7 months backpacking Africa solo.