If you look around the shops, internet and on magazines, bold marketing campaigns for the best and quickest way to get lean. Thermogenic supplements, pharmaceuticals, weight loss centres, diets, expedited fat loss/transformation programs and even television shows (eg: The Biggest Loser) that further accentuate this quick fix mentality. Question is how sustainable are these 'transformations'?
I believe that for a transformation to be successful, it should be measured over a period longer than 4, 8 or even 12 weeks. A real transformation should be charted across a year, maybe even over a few years. Progress should not just be measured by a drop in body fat percentages, but by a shift in value and belief systems, which ultimately results in long term physiological and emotional changes.
These days, there is a massive push for using a low carb perspective (or 'carbophobia') for fat loss. I think it is dangerous to alienate a whole macronutrient group from your diet. I truly believe that we have to stop intellectualising what we eat and breaking them into their component parts. Foods are more than protein, carbs, fats (good or bad), specific vitamins and minerals. As Dr T Colin Campbell once stated "Nutrition acts not by one, but by a symphony of mechanisms." No greater truth.
On a different front, we have reached epic proportions for the global obesity epidemic. With America Samoa sitting at the top where '95% of the nation is declared overweight' and 75% obese. The U.S and Mexico sitting at around 33% of its population being obese. Meanwhile in the east, China is estimated to have at least 300 million obese, which makes it 'the second most obese nation after the USA in numbers of overweight citizens.' Once lean populations adopting a predominantly plant-based approach to eating, now embrace a western diet high in processed, refined and animal based foods.
From obesity to the rise of conditions and chronic degenerative diseases such as high blood pressure, gout, cancer, diabetes and heart disease. These diseases have often been correlated with dietary excess (see Diseases of affluence). The funny thing is that much as heart disease is a silent killer, Dr Caldwell Esselstyn has aptly described it as a "toothless paper tiger".
So what is the panacea to it all? What special pill, diet or fitness regiment is the best solution to creating sustainable fat loss and optimal health?
I guess that is why in recent years, the plant-based movement has started to gain momentum the world over. A plant-based/vegan diet has been shown on numerous occasions to halt and even reverse chronic degenerative diseases. It has also been successful at promoting sustainable fat loss as well.
Many people turn to a plant-based diet for different reasons. Ranging from, animal welfare or ethics, to environmental sustainability, health and even the enhancement of physical performance. Whatever the reason is, no one can argue the fact that a plant-based diet isn't just another passing diet fad. It is here to stay.
So back to the headline of this blogpost, the answer is really quite simple. Eat a whole foods plant-based diet and limit (with the goal to eventually exclude) animal based products. As they say a picture paints a thousand words, the transformations below are exactly what I am talking about. Real world, real results.
No, not anyone is expecting for you to have a full 180 overnight. Take your time with it because change is relative to where each person is at. The takeaway?
Make plants the feature of your plate.
And...Remember to #fuelpositive!
Peace and Strength,
Luke and Emilie Tan
P.S: To all those that have contributed. Thank you for being a part of this article. Feel free to contact us if you would like to share your plant-based transformation
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