The Challenges of Adopting a Whole-Food, Plant-Based Diet

There are huge benefits to be gained from adopting a whole-food, plant-based diet. But let’s not kid ourselves; there are also some significant challenges. Some of these challenges are real, but many others are imagined. Over the next few blog entries, we’re going to discuss many of these challenges. They may not be the only ones, but hopefully we’ll cover the obstacles that might have been holding you back from committing to a WFPB diet.

The first is the most basic—lack of desire. This is also one that only you can overcome. First and foremost, you must want to do it. And that desire must come from deep within you. Sometimes people try a WFPB diet because of outside pressure. Are you doing it because your spouse is and insists you try it too? Or maybe your child wants to eat this way, or another relative or friend. These people probably have the best intentions; however, even if their influence gets you to try a WFPB diet, it could also trigger an unspoken desire on your part to dig in your heels in resistance to staying with the diet—like when your mom tried forcing you to eat all your vegetables as a kid. This usually leads to failure in the long run. This isn’t to say that people close to you can’t or shouldn’t provide you with support during your journey. In fact, having a support network is a great advantage when switching to a WFPB diet. But no matter what your reasons, they must be your own.

Another primary challenge is the old standby “I’m too set in my eating habits to make such a radical dietary change.” Well, first of all, it’s never too late to change, especially considering what’s at stake—for you, us and everything else on the planet. It’s also not that radical of a change. As Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn says, what could be more radical than having open heart surgery? Or dying of a heart attack or cancer? Or watching as our coastal areas are inundated by the ocean’s rising waters—not to mention being party to the unnecessary suffering of the tens of billions of animals we raise for food? If properly chosen and prepared, WFPB meals are not only delicious but also hearty and satisfying. It’s not a matter of giving up foods you love; it’s about switching from foods you love that are bad for you to foods you will love that are good for you.

In the days ahead, we’ll be covering many more obstacles to adopting a WFPB diet, so stay tuned!

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.