5 ways to start rocking a plant-based lifestyle

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Marla Barr

Decades ago, vegans, vegetarians or plant-based groupies were rare, unless you found yourself in the groovy hippie mecca of San Fran, or health-obsessed SoCal. Now, they are everywhere, and according to the food giants around the world like Nestle, this trend is here to stay.

In the United States from 2014 to 2017, those claiming to be plant-based, increased from one to six per cent of the population. This seems staggering, but countries all over the world are seeing similar changes, and there is no indication that this veggie-train is going to slow down anytime soon.

The why is easy to figure out. The two growing trends – taste and yoga – are helping take the plant-based movement to a whole new epic level.

I asked my once carnivore-based husband why he ordered the vegan quinoa burger at our local hangout.

“It’s just the best-tasting burger on the menu!” he said.

Food producers want to sell their product and watching trends is their Bible, so if plant-based-friendly options are what their customers are asking for, that is exactly what they’ll deliver.

The other crazy huge campaign that is serving to amplify all of this? Mindfulness.

Call it meditation, kindness, mindfulness, gratitude or yoga, but this game-changing ideology can be seen everywhere you look: it’s being taught in elementary schools, can be heard in boardroom meetings and the bookshelves are lined with titles promoting the idea. And, we are seeing this across the world.

All fingers are pointing toward a major change, shift and evolution of humanity right now – and it is for the good. One of the pillars of this is being kinder to yourself, those around you, and all living species – so you can see how being plant-based fits right in.

So where do you start, aside from maybe taking that steak out of your shopping cart?

Here are my top five tips to become more plant-based and rocking this whole “Yep, I am an evolved human” thing:

How did this get to my plate? A simple Google search on meat processing factories can easily change anyone’s life in a few key strokes. Back in university, one of our profs had us memorize the 47 steps of correctly slaughtering an animal for a test. Needless to say, most of the class turned vegetarian after that day. Education is your super power.

Know you are already half way there: No matter how much you love your steak, chicken or salmon, look at everything else on your plate. You are probably over half way there already. You are just working on increasing that percentage bit by bit.

Find what you love: From killer guacamole and chips to epic blueberry oat pancakes, from your essential trail mix to your town’s best black bean burger with sweet potato fries, find your plant-based favourites, and enjoy every delicious mouthful.

Get inspired: There are some amazingly inspirational folks out there who are taking the plant-based switch to a new level. Their stories and tips are as hilarious as they are moving, as mouth-watering as they are motivating. Check out NYC chef Max La Manna (on Instagram @eatingwithmax), Aussie podcaster Simon Hill (pod on iTunes at Plant Proof), or Amanda, NoCal’s eco-foodie phenom (on Instagram @mamaeatsplants).

Find a friend: At this point, everyone knows someone that is vegetarian or vegan. Get together with them. Eat with them. Get their tips.

In the end, know that you can totally rock the plant-based lifestyle. It is easier – and way more delish – than you think.

With gratitude, Marla

Marla Barr (AKA the Detox Yogi), is the owner of Bliss Body Wellness, a food scientist, yoga teacher, and one happy plant-based Canadian. Marla leads monthly 7-Day wellness cleanses, hosts yoga & wellness retreats, has a weekly podcast on Apple/iTunes called Your Wellness Journey, and is working on her first wellness detox book and cookbook. Find her at www.blissbodywellness.ca or on Instagram at @blissbodywellness.

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