How many times have you jumped on-board the diet train with high hopes of weight loss and improved health, only to discover limited food choices, difficulty staying on-track, and few measurable health benefits? Diet fads come and go, but one - the whole foods, plant-based diet (WFPB)- isn't a fad.
It's not only based on common-sense food choices but also sustainable and good for the body and the mind.
If you've not yet explored the WFPB lifestyle, you'll want to read this post from beginning to end! We've shared the basics, including the best foods to choose from and even a few tips on creating meal plans.
A whole food, plant-based diet is, at its core is so uncomplicated you could break it down into two principles based solely on its name. Whole-foods and plants.
When you think about what counts as a whole food, look for foods in their natural state. Also, choose minimally processed foods and those that contain limited (or none) refined ingredients.
People who follow WFPB diets don't eat any foods containing animal ingredients. That includes meat, eggs, milk, or honey.
Choosing a whole-food, plant-based diet allows you to meet your nutritional needs by choosing foods in their natural state. You'll also want to focus on minimally-processed foods.
In a minute, we'll talk more about what you can eat on a WFPB diet, but first, take a look at the current state of affairs for the American diet.
Before we explore the statistics, you're likely curious about the heading for this section. Maybe you're asking yourself, "what is the American diet, and why is it sad"?
S.A.D. is the acronym for the standard American diet.
The source of 63% of the calories consumed by Americans is processed and refined foods. Processing doesn't disqualify a food from an acceptable status on the list of healthy foods. It's all about the level of processing.
On most grocery store shelves, you'll find foods ranging from minimally to heavily processed. Minimal processing includes prepping foods for convenience. Think bagged lettuce, chopped vegetables, and shelled and roasted nuts.
Most frozen dinners, microwaveable dinners, and some ready-to-eat foods such as chips and crackers are heavily processed. Your favorite carbonated beverage is one of those food items on the heavily processed list for all the soda lovers out there.
Minimally processed foods have a place in the American diet. Sadly, only 12% of our calories come from minimally processed and plant-based foods. The most sobering fact is that only 6% of our calories come from plant-based foods: the other half comes from French fries!
How sad is that? Sure, potatoes in their natural state, baked or steamed lightly, are a healthy vegetable choice. French fries, cooked in oil, do not qualify as healthy food. Their status on the health and wellness charts is low.
Until they experience a diet-related health condition, most people assume they follow a relatively healthy diet. Even those who dine on fast-food all the time don't always realize the harm they're doing to their bodies and minds.
Most of us realize unhealthy diets can lead to weight gain, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease. What we don't take into consideration is the effects our diets can have on mental health.
Diets rich in heavily processed and refined foods may contribute to mood disorders, anxiety, and depression. On the flip-side, people who consume fresh fruits and vegetables, the primary ingredients in whole food, plant-based diets may enjoy protection from depression and anxiety.
Next, we'll further examine what a whole foods plant-based diet is and what it isn't.
When you hear the word diet, what comes to mind? It's a word that comes heavily weighted with emotion, mostly if you've spent your life struggling with weight and other diet-related issues.
One refreshing aspect of the whole food, plant-based (WFPB) diet is that in many ways, it's not a diet at all. Instead of a strict playbook of dietary do's and don'ts, people who choose WFPB have the freedom to choose from a variety of healthy foods. Think of it as a lifestyle!
Earlier, we simplified the WFPB lifestyle to two primary principles. Now, let's expand those principles by looking further at how they define the WFPB way of living:
Another principle followed by many people who choose a whole-foods, plant-based lifestyle is consuming locally sourced, organic foods whenever possible. Whether you have access primarily to conventional grocery store produce or you're fortunate enough to buy from a local community supported agriculture group (CSA), either will offer a wide range of healthy and colorful fruits and vegetables.
Since the focus of the whole foods, plant-based lifestyle is on eating plants, you might wonder if you'll be eating nothing but salads and fruit. While fruits and vegetables are at the center of this lifestyle, there's so much more you can eat.
Besides the common plant foods, you'll also eat whole grains, legumes, seeds, and nuts. Unlike other similar eating lifestyles, you're not prohibited from eating animal products.
If you're like most people, when you buy a new diet book or join a diet program, you gravitate towards the list of items you can't eat or drink. Some diets forbid eggs, dairy, or red meats. Others require cutting out all fats (good and bad) or leave out otherwise healthy foods like pinto beans or oatmeal.
The WFPB diet, on the other hand, is more flexible. Followers eat mostly plants, but animal products aren't off-limits.
Pick up any WFPB guidebook, and you'll find permission to eat an array of foods, including nuts and seeds, bread made with whole-grain flour, plant-based milks, and tofu. The key is to add these foods in moderation. Since they're more calorie-dense than some of the other food choices, they can contribute to weight gain.
You don't want to eat refined foods, especially those made with added sugars, processed oils, and white flour.
Anytime you make a significant change in any area of your life, there's a learning curve. It's no different when you start a WFPB diet. These tips will help get you started on this healthy lifestyle:
At lunch and dinner, fill one half of your plate with colorful vegetables. If you eat snacks, pair vegetables with salsa or hummus.
In your old life, meat was the centerpiece of most meals. In your new life, eat smaller amounts and use meat as a garnish, not the main act.
The community of proponents for healthy eating now understands that avocados are good fats. Vegetable oils-not so much! If it's not a whole food, it doesn't belong on the table in a WFPB home.
One night each week, eat vegetarian-style. Create meals combining beans, vegetables, and whole grains.
Once you're eating the WFPB way, those cute little toaster pastries and big, fluffy doughnuts will no longer have a place at your table. Replace those fat and sugar-laden breakfast foods with healthy choices such as oatmeal or quinoa. Mix in some nuts, seeds, and fresh fruit, and voila, you have a delicious, healthy breakfast.
One of the first things most people cut out when trying to eat healthier is dessert. How sad is that? You can still satisfy your sweet tooth if you keep a selection of fruit handy, including watermelon slices, peaches, and apples.
Were you one of those children who fought back against eating greens? Now that you're a grownup, it's time to give kale, spinach, collars, and Swiss chard another try.
We've all seen the boring side salads offered by restaurants. When you build them yourself, a salad takes on a different dynamic. Fill the bowl with an assortment of fresh greens followed by your choice of vegetables, beans, or tofu.
Instead of lathering greens with butter, or pouring bottled dressing on your salad, look in one of the WFPB books or on the author's website for a healthy alternative to salad dressing.
When starting a new journey, most people want a roadmap, at least until they acclimate to their new digs. The same goes for those choosing a healthy lifestyle.
It's critical to have a meal plan with several days worth of meals, including snacks.
You can manage meals by doing some online research. You'll find more recipes and meal plans than you'll ever need, but it's a great start.
The key to success is variety - didn't someone once say, "variety is the spice of life?"
Even though we're creatures of comfort and usually prefer the same short-list of favorite meals, you'll find it easier to stay focused if you include both the familiar and the novel.
Once you're secure with meal planning, whole foods, plant-based diet-style, you may even feel confident enough to create a few of your own recipes and meal plans.
Earlier, we mentioned fad diets, and it seems like there's a new one every week. How can you know for sure whether there's any concrete proof that changing to a whole-food, plant-based lifestyle will improve your health?
There have been (and still are ongoing) studies on WFPB lifestyles and how they impact health.
In some cases, there isn't yet enough evidence to say with 100% certainty that eating a diet based on foods in their natural state, or at least minimally processed, guarantees a person a lifetime of health. However, current studies do point to multiple benefits of choosing a WFPB lifestyle, including:
While a WFPB diet won't promise perfect health or longevity, the health improvements associated with the lifestyle may mean you're at a reduced risk of some of the most concerning health conditions today.
The big three -cancer, diabetes, and heart disease - could be a worry of the past when you choose to change your diet.
Everybody has an opinion about nearly every facet of life, including your eating lifestyle. You've likely heard both sides of the coin regarding supplements.
One camp believes if the diet is balanced and full of whole, organic foods, there's no need for vitamin and mineral supplements. They feel you should be able to satisfy your nutritional needs solely through the foods you eat naturally.
The other camp feels strongly about the benefits and even the necessity of taking supplements.
If you're contemplating a WFPB lifestyle, you'll want to make sure you give your body what it needs. There's a list of supplements suggested for people who follow a whole-food, plant-based lifestyle.
Some of the big ones include:
We hope we've given you enough information to make an educated decision about whether a whole-food, plant-based diet is something you'd like to start. The benefits to your health far outweigh any slight inconvenience you may fear regarding food choices or limitations.
Jay Todtenbier is an original founder of SupplementRelief.com in 2010 and has operated the business ever since. He is also a tennis instructor and gospel musician. Formerly he spent 25 years in business development, technology and marketing with startups and major corporations having gone through the tech boom in Silicon Valley in the 90s. He became passionate about, and began studying and practicing Wellness as a Lifestyle after experiencing chronic, personal health challenges including depression, auto-immune disorders, and being overweight that impacted his ability to live a healthy, vibrant life. Since then, he has been an advocate for healthier living encouraging others to live better through making small, gradual changes to lifestyle behaviors relating to whole-foods nutrition, stress management, reasonable exercise, proper sleep, and the use of targeted, high-quality supplements.
Learn more about Jay Todtenbier.
Ask questions. Share your thoughts. Note that we cannot answer questions relating to specific medical conditions - please refer those to your qualified healthcare provider.
Post a new Comment or Reply to an existing one. Help for using the Discussion Forum.
Comments are displayed in order of the last one posted so the most recent one is at the top and the oldest one at the bottom.
Replies within a Comment are displayed in reverse order with the oldest one at the top and the most recent one at the bottom.
Each post identifies who made the post and the date and time the post was made.
Mouse over the icons for tooltips that explain what they mean.
If you see this icon you can attach an Audio file to your post.
If you see this icon you can attach a Document file to your post.
If you see this icon you can attach an Image file to your post.
If you see this icon you can attach a Video file to your post.
You will see the Ban icon (Report Post as SPAM) immediately following the Timestamp of the post. Click this icon if you feel strongly that the content posted is not appropriate and should be reviewed by the Forum Moderator. You will be provided with a confirmation dialog to be sure you wish to submit this post for review. If submitted, the Forum Moderator will be notified to review the post and will determine what type of action to take.
Click in the upper right corner of this Help modal or anywhere on the web page outside of the modal to exit Help.
Session Expired from Inactivity
Do you want to?
You are idle for seconds.
SupplementRelief.com has been an Authorized Reseller (Team Member) of FirstFitness Nutrition (FFN) since April of 2020, selling FFN products directly from our website to our customers, handling the payment processing, order fulfillment, and customer service.
Effective December 1, 2023 FirstFitness Nutrition REQUIRES ALL Authorized Resellers, who have formerly sold FFN products DIRECTLY from their OWN website, to refer the PRODUCT PURCHASE to the Reseller's FFN Team Member website.
You may continue placing orders on SupplementRelief.com through December 31, 2023 for the remaining products we have in stock.
SupplementRelief.com's FFN Team Member website is:
On the top right of every page you will see our Team Member name to confirm you are on the correct FFN Team Member website:
Your FFN Team Member: SUPPLEMENTRELIEF.COM
Please BOOKMARK this new website supplementrelief.firstfitness.com for future shopping. You may begin using the Team Member website immediately.
You may also place your order directly over the phone by calling either SupplementRelief.com at 888.424.0032 or FirstFitness Nutrition's Customer Support line at 800.621.4348. Please let them know that your FFN Team Member is SUPPLEMENTRELIEF.COM.
You may continue to use this website (supplementrelief.com) for FFN product descriptions and other Wellness content from our Blog, Education, or Recipes, but on December 1, 2023:
This means that as of December 1, 2023:
Every FirstFitness Nutrition order, from every FFN Team Member website, is subject to the exact same Order Policy. This means that shipping charges and sales taxes will be calculated the same way for every FFN product purchased from every FFN Team Member Website.
FirstFitness Nutrition offers a Customer Loyalty VIP Rewards Program for savings whereby you can earn future discounts on product purchased.
This is a monthly autoship program (called a Smart Ship) where you choose the product(s) you want shipped to you each month. You can easily create and then log into your Customer VIP Rewards account anytime and change the products on your monthly auto-ship or pause/cancel it.
Learn more about the VIP Customer Rewards Program.
SupplementRelief.com wants the transition to the FFN Team Member website for future orders to be a smooth process.
Faith Hoffman, our Customer Support Specialist, is happy to assist you. We appreciate your business and are prepared to answer questions and provide additional details on any or all of the above information, policies, products, costs, discount opportunities and programs, etc.
Please get in touch with Faith at your convenience:
Faith Hoffman has spent 23 years in business practices, research, and customer relations for brand products and national companies. Lengthy hospital stays for auto-immune disorders, including the onset of heart and liver disease, led her to research the benefits of quality all-natural supplements and the importance of living a healthy lifestyle.
She became a customer of SupplementRelief.com three years ago. Positive results from healthy lifestyle changes and using quality, targeted supplements compelled her to share and recommend SupplementRelief.com products to family, friends, and clients. Studying through her journey and having a passion for helping others, she joined SupplementRelief.com as a customer support specialist in 2023.
When Faith is not assisting SupplementRelief.com customers, she enjoys singing gospel music, volunteering, and spending time with her family and pets.
Faith can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone or text at (225) 316-5716.
* Disclaimer: This page is available exclusively for SupplementRelief.com clients. None of the information on this website is intended to replace your relationship with your healthcare provider(s). Nothing should be considered medical advice. The information, knowledge, and experience shared on this website are the opinions of SupplementRelief.com. This site and its content are intended to enhance your knowledge base as YOU MAKE YOUR OWN HEALTHCARE DECISIONS in partnership with your qualified health professional.
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products and services are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
* There is NO GUARANTEE OF SPECIFIC RESULTS for the products or services offered, and the RESULTS CAN VARY for each individual.
FirstFitness Nutrition and NuMedica may be promoted and sold on the internet ONLY by Authorized Resellers who have been approved by, and have registered their website domain with these companies. They strictly prohibit, and actively monitor, the UNAUTHORIZED SALE or RESALE of their products in ALL online public shopping portals including Amazon, eBay, and others and into other countries. All products purchased in SupplementRelief.com are for PERSONAL USE ONLY and CANNOT BE RESOLD to others. Please report violations of Reseller Policy directly to FirstFitness Nutrition at 800.621.4348 and to NuMedica at 800.869.8100.
The content and photographs on this website are copyrighted or Licensed Material and may not be downloaded for other than personal use. Republication, retransmission, reproduction, or any other use of the content or photographs is prohibited. ©2010-2023 SupplementRelief.com.
Are you sure you want to remove this item?
Please email if you have questions or need assistance.
We accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express credit cards.
We DO NOT retain or store your credit card information after the purchase. We DO NOT share your information with anyone. We DO NOT auto-subscribe you to anything. Your information is YOURS.
The charge will appear on your credit card statement as SupplementRelief.com with our phone number (888) 424-0032.
A safe and accurate address for delivery must be provided at the time the order is placed. Once an order has shipped, SupplementRelief.com is NOT responsible for lost or stolen packages CONFIRMED BY THE CARRIER to be delivered to the address provided for the order.
Since COVID-19, and the ensuing economic challenges in the USA economy, we respectfully ask that you allow some additional time for delivery for the carriers (USPS, UPS, and FedEx). Most orders still arrive on time, or near on time, but some may run late. We make every effort to get your order packed and into the carriers hands the same day, or by the next business morning if your order came in later in the previous day after carrier pickup, but we have no control over any delays that may happen within the shipping carrier's delivery system. Please order earlier for the time being if you are time-sensitive.
Orders that contain only FirstFitness Nutrition products have a shipping fee automatically calculated based upon the actual shipping weight of the items purchased. The charge ranges from $4.95 to $14.95.
For orders with NuMedica products you may choose from the shipping options below on the Order Checkout form in the Shipping Information section on the first line that says Choose Shipping Method.
|United States||Standard||3-6 Days||$4.95|
|United States||Priority||2-4 Days||$9.95|
|United States||Free||7-10 Days||$0.00|
|International||FedEx International||4-7 Days||$79.95*|
|International||GlobalPost International||12-21 Days||$39.95*|
|*International shipping costs may be higher depending upon package weight and destination. We will contact you for your approval of the additional amount if this occurs.|
SupplementRelief.com may use the email or phone number provided on your Order to call or text you regarding Order Status or to inform you of changes to the Order Policy.
When your order ships we will send you a confirmation email with the delivery tracking information.
Shipping anything these days internationally is expensive. COVID resulted in more rigorous customs import processes, and now with much higher energy prices, international shipping rates are higher.
FedEx is the most reliable and faster carrier, at least for now, but they are expensive. Our FedEx international shipping fee is a minimum of $79.95. It usually makes more sense to get several months of supply (3 months or more) in one order to minimize the shipping expense per order over time. While the added weight of additional items may increase the base shipping price by a little (usually 10-25% depending upon total weight and destination), it is usually not by very much relative to shipping an additional small order later.
We also offer a lower-cost international shipping option using GlobalPost International for $39.95. So far, they have been reliable in getting packages correctly delivered but it takes 2 - 4 times as long to get the package delivered. Packages may take longer to process in the receiving country's customs process and status updates may not be reported as quickly. Please be patient if you choose this option to save money.
Some International orders may cost more to ship depending upon weight and location. If that happens we will contact you first and get your approval for any additional charge before proceeding. International orders may also be subject to additional customs fees and duties/taxes based upon the destination country's customs import laws and policies. These fees are NOT known or included on our order form and are typically charged and collected by the shipping carrier when they are delivering the product to it's final destination once the package has cleared the destination country's customs process. It is recommended that the buyer research custom import fees for the products/services they are importing beforehand to be aware of potential, additional fees.
Our manufacturers formulate their probiotics to ensure their products retain viability until they reach the consumer. Probiotics that are recommended to be refrigerated remain so until the time of shipment, then shipped alongside an ice pack to ensure potency (Note: Ice pack will not arrive frozen, and product may not arrive cold). Orders placed on a Thursday-Sunday requiring cold shipping will not ship until the following Monday.
If your order has not been shipped yet, you can request a cancellation. Your original purchase amount will be refunded within three business days. If your order has already shipped, see Returns and Refunds.
If you want to make a change to your order, please email us as soon as possible so we can make the change before your order ships. If your order has already shipped you may incur additional shipping charges for the second shipment and the return label for any products returned.
If we have made a mistake on your order, or the product arrives in a damaged or unusable condition, we will make every reasonable effort to right the situation quickly to your satisfaction.
We accept returns subject to when the return is requested and the condition the product is returned in. All returns must first be authorized by contacting us. In your request, please let us know why you are returning the item(s). We will respond promptly with authorization, the return address, and a return shipping label if appropriate.
If your order has already shipped you can return any un-opened products within 30 days of receiving your order for a 100% refund of the price paid for the product, less the actual shipping charges we incurred to get the product to you originally and then returned, less a $10 restocking fee. Un-opened means the protective seal on the bottle or container, or the shrink-wrap on the box or kit, has not been broken and the product has not otherwise been damaged in any way. You may use the original packaging for the return or acquire your own. We will provide the return shipping label. We DO NOT accept returns for NuMedica products once the protective product seal has been broken.
Upon receipt of returned product(s), we will refund your credit card within three business days for the product(s) returned.