5 Ways to Rock Your Latin Vegan Diet

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Jan 19, 2016 06:40 AM EST

NORTHWICH, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL 01: Fruit and vegetables are displayed for sale at a shop on April 1, 2014 in Northwich, United Kingdom. Researchers at University College London have said that eating 'five-a-day' of fruit and vegetables should be increased to seven. The study involving 65,226 men and women concluded that lifestyles which included at least seven-a-day reduced the chances of serious health issues. (Photo : Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Having a vegan diet sure brings a lot of benefits, but did you know that you can make it better?

Being a vegan gives you the opportunity to show support for animal life, the environment and also support for human life, the Vegan Society stated.

Better yet, while doing that, it's good to realize that you're also doing yourself a favor by having a healthier lifestyle. Take your healthy vegan lifestyle to a higher level by following these tips, taken from The Latin Kitchen.

Eat Right

Vegans have a plant-based healthy diet primarily composed of fruits and veggies. Other items include grains, seeds and legumes.

If you want to be a vegan, stay away from foods that are thought to cause inflammation in the body such as animal products, dairy, refined sugar, white flour, rice and bread.

Enjoy the Health Benefits

Don't think that being vegan makes you lose the nutrients found in other nonvegan foods. Instead, focus on this: fruits and vegetables contain all the vitamins, minerals, nutrients and antioxidants that your body needs. These food items are “earth's purest form of giving us food.”

Some studies have shown that consumption of animal fats and proteins raise the risk of developing diseases such as cancer, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, hypertension and heart disease.

Try Out Raw Foods!

This doesn't include sushi, though. Raw plant-based foods enable you to take in as much vitamins, minerals and nutrients as much as possible compared to cooked food. Some nutrients are lost during cooking.

Protein Doesn't Always Mean Meat

Vegans have a lot of protein sources to choose from including broccoli, kale, almonds, spinach, lentils, beans, chickpeas, peas, oats, potatoes, nut butters and non-GMO tofu. With these, you can actually load up on protein!

The Vegetarian Resource Group said that it is easy to meet daily protein needs.

For example, having a breakfast of oatmeal, soy milk and bagel; eating a lunch of whole wheat bread and vegetarian baked beans; a sumptuous dinner of tofu, cooked broccoli, cooked brown rice, and some almonds; and snacking on just a few spoons of peanut butter along with some crackers gives enough protein for meals in a day.

Replace Food Items

There are a lot of possible substitutes for food items that are otherwise inflammatory. Try replacing dairy milk with almond milk or cashew milk; eggs with apple sauce in baking; dates, figs and bananas instead of sugar to sweeten; crumbled non-GMO tofu in lasagna; and raw cacao instead of chocolate.

There are a lot of things to try and enjoy. Have fun!

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