1. Less sluggish-ness.
Now, I'm not saying I never feel sluggish—everyone has those lazy days where you can't stand the thought of putting on pants and acting human. But, I genuinely feel like I have more energy to get things done throughout the day. This may be due to that fact that I sleep better at night. Really, you should see my sleep log from my Fitbit. I hardly move anymore (an indicator of restlessness) when I sleep! A more sound sleep = more energy for the day.
2. No more "brain fog"
Many people claim more clarity in the mind and I have definitely noticed it in myself. This is because you are no longer consuming excess hormones naturally found in animal products. Additionally, contaminants in animal foods can impair cognitive function. I really do contribute being able to pass all of my exams for the CIA (Certified Internal Auditor) on the first try to my plant-based diet.
3. Faster recovery
When you're no longer consuming endotoxins (bacterial toxins in meat that can't be destroyed by cooking) you reduce the inflammation in your body. Additionally, anti-inflammatory phytonutrients found in berries reduce inflammatory affects. This means a faster recovery after a tough workout because you're not left feeling that intense soreness that makes once simple tasks like going downstairs or sitting on a toilet seem impossible (yeah leg day, you don't scare me anymore).
4. Regular bowel movements
Your digestion will change as you start fueling your body and your microbiome with the right foods. No more constipation or inconsistencies. Regular bowel movements are so important for removing waste from the body and our overall health. This high fiber diet is key for that!
5. Lower blood pressure
This one really shocked me. I never thought I had high blood pressure—that doesn't occur for young people like me, right? Well, initially when I switched I had higher blood pressure and it stayed due to my junk food habits if you recall from this post. But, I'm happy to report that now that I've been eating mostly whole foods, my blood pressure is normal! (Bonus—my resting pulse also dropped!)
Obviously everyone's experience will be different. You may experience some of these or perhaps some different ones. Maybe you have symptoms from a diet-related disease that diminish. Maybe you go through a detox phase depending on how poor your previous diet was—much like quitting soda or caffeine. However, the end-result is always worth it. Regardless of how you feel, you are doing the right thing for your longevity.
The one thing to remember is to make sure to eat enough calories. Yes, as crazy as it sounds, you need to eat more! I'm not mad about that—ha! Because a whole-food, plant-based diet is nutrient dense, many people don't realize that they have to eat more to reach their calorie goals. This diet is high volume, low calorie—meaning you get full before you over eat.
It also takes time. If you don't feel great right way, don't fret! Detoxing from animal-based products is a real thing! It can take from a few days to a few weeks, and even intermittently for a few months for your body to adjust as the body continues to remove the toxins, pesticides, bacteria, hormones, and mercury among other harmful things that are found in a majority of animal-based foods.
If you need some inspiration on what to eat, I have created a FREE meal plan that gives you several delicious and affordable meals! I also breakdown the nutrition so you can see how easy it is to obtain all of the nutrients you need on a plant-based diet. Enter your name and email in the form below this post to have it sent straight to your inbox! Enjoy!
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Health My Lifestyle
Thanks, Vera! So glad to hear that.
Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
Well I'd say these benefits are pretty awesome changes! 🙂 I've been a vegetarian for so long, I can't remember what it was like beforehand when I ate meat. When I went full vegan for awhile, I actually didn't feel any different. I know that a lot of people say they feel a lot better without dairy, but apparently it doesn't bother my system!
Health My Lifestyle
That's awesome you've been vegetarian for so long! I wish I had become one sooner 🙂