After her heart attack, Rosie O'Donnell vowed to change her lifestyle, blogging her goal for "uncharted territory into mornings that begin at 7, long walks and vegetables." And that including surrendering her favorite foods (ice cream and wine) for a plant-based diet. The result: Rosie lost 10 pounds in 10 days, as she proudly tweeted after making the change in the summer. Should you make the shift? Get the dish here.
Why some experts believe that a plant-based diet is healthier: High in fiber, vitamins and minerals and low in calories, vegetables take center stage in this food plan. Add fresh fruits, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds and tofu, and your plant-based diet can help you shed pounds, improve your cholesterol level, reduce your blood pressure and even, according to experts such as Dr. Joel Fuhrman in his revolutionary "Eat to Live: The Amazing Nutrient-Rich Program for Fast and Sustained Weight Loss" book, heal migraines.
However, if you want to use a plant-based diet for weight loss, beware of processed foods. Eating honey-sweetened fruit and nut bars labeled "vegan" may make you feel virtuous at breakfast - but at the end of the day, calories count. Instead, for a great breakfast, try Arrowhead Mills Organic Quinoa mixed with ginger and cinnamon and topped with 45-calorie Blue Diamond unsweetened almond coconut milk. In addition, it's critical to get enough protein by combining foods if you want to become a vegan. For example, your dinner could consist of a large bowl of steamed fresh veggies, accompanied by Eden Organic Black Beans, organic steamed brown rice bowls and a generous sprinkle of Bragg organic sprinkle seasoning.
Recommended books to help you enjoy the benefits of a plant-based diet: