I’ve asked a few experts to answer the question on what we should eat and what is junk food.
First up, vegan activist, coach, nutrition expert, and someone who has personally made a huge and ongoing difference in my life, John . He is not only passionate about health, but he has been a compassionate vegan, working on behalf of animals for for the past few decades. If you have been vegan for any length of time, you probably already know John, if you are new to veganism, or are just thinking about it, he is someone you will want to know as you continue in your journey.
The difference between a “junk food vegan” and a “whole foods vegan”
” First and foremost, before talking about the difference between junk food and whole food vegans, we need to validate and acknowledge that any vegan, regardless of type, should be given praise for not consuming animal products. Let us not forget the countless animals that are saved every day due to the choices that they make. Having said that, it’s true that what sometimes happens when someone turns vegan is that they want to do the right thing for the animals and the planet but they may not know much about diet. Let’s face it, good dietary practices are not taught in school other than the infamous “pyramid”with the same old animal products. Often times, vegans turn to “similar type” products that they ate as animal product consumers. These include, fake soy meats, fake soy ice creams, and generally a continuation of highly processed products minus the animal ingredients. We need to realize that achieving great health is not difficult. We just can’t believe how easy it really is when we hear it and want to make it more complicated than it is. All you have to ask yourself is “Can I find this in nature?” In other words, has what I am holding in my hand been made by a machine in a factory or is it something that came from the earth or a tree? That’s how simple it is.
The more items we eat that come in boxes, the more we are considered “junk food” eaters. Whole Foods are not found in boxes. They are found in gardens and on trees and you find them in your produce section of any store or at your local farmers market. These are the foods that we need to focus on. These are the foods that lead us to what we once ate in nature and are designed to eat. Pretty packages will not help us achieve our goals of good health. Granted, these are great products that are packaged and have their place in our lives. I would rather see someone consume a few processed foods while on a wholesome fresh fruit and vegetable diet than someone who eats no processed food and feels so bad about it that they give up the vegan diet completely. Everything has balance. We cannot forget that simple fact. The key is to increase the consumption of foods directly found and grown from the earth. Processed foods will not and cannot give us the nutrients, enzymes, micro-nutrients, and countless other essential ingredients that our bodies crave in order to be healthy. You can’t pour apple juice in your car and expect it to run. It was not designed to utilize that type of fuel. We need to really grasp the fact that we were designed to eat food from the earth. Whole, unprocessed, fresh, brimming with nutritional value and great tasting, this is the food that we can thrive on. Anything less is going over stimulate your taste buds, run havoc with your mind in the form of addictions, leave your wallet a little emptier, and worse of all, leave your body lacking what it was truly designed to consume.
Here is the list to remember, organic fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, legumes and potatoes.”