Is the 30-Plants-a-Week the New 5-a-Day? | Soul Fruit News02/06/2024
In the quest for optimal well-being, the age-old advice of getting your '5-a-day' has been a steadfast mantra. However, what if we told you there's another new, exciting approach that not only makes achieving your daily plant intake easier but also brings a spectrum of health benefits beyond your expectations? Welcome to the world of ‘30 Plants a Week’ or 'Plant Points', a refreshing take on nourishing your gut health through the vibrant variety of plant-based foods.
You might be sceptical (we’ve been too), thinking that incorporating 30 plant points a week sounds daunting, impossible – perhaps time-consuming, expensive, or even overly clinical. The truth, however, is quite the opposite. Not only is it more budget-friendly, manageable, and delectable than you might imagine, but the potential health gains are also staggering. From mood elevation and hormone regulation to increased longevity and enhanced overall performance, the benefits of embracing a diverse plant-based diet are far-reaching.
Ready to elevate your well-being and embark on a culinary adventure that goes beyond the ordinary? Let's dive into the delicious details and explore how our Soul Fruit snacks can help you achieve your 30 Plant Points goals!
What is the 30 plants a week challenge?
It all started in 2018 with the groundbreaking findings of the American Gut Project. The research uncovered that individuals incorporating more than 30 distinct plant foods into their weekly diet enjoyed a more diverse gut microbiome compared to those limiting themselves to 10 or fewer plant varieties.
How does it differ from the 5-a-day recommendation?
The traditional '5-a-day' guideline - which is still an important reference in the world of nutrition and a great place to start to eat healthier and a more varied diet - can sometimes overlook the diverse needs of our 40 trillion gut microbes.
These tiny superheroes need a variety of plant foods to thrive, each strain having its favourite. The more diverse the plant buffet, the more skills our gut acquire: immune cell training, infection resistance, fortified gut barriers, hormone regulation, brain communication, blood sugar balance, and disease prevention.
What counts as a Plant Point?
A plant point is earned for each distinct plant-based food item you consume within a day. This includes the Super Six, which are the main plant groups: vegetables, fruits, wholegrains, legumes (beans and pulses), nuts and seeds and herbs and spices. The goal is to diversify your plant intake, aiming for at least 30 different types of plants each week.
For example, if your day includes a bag of Keo Mango chewy slices, spinach, quinoa, chickpeas, almonds, and basil, you've accumulated six plant points. The emphasis is on variety, as different plant foods provide unique combinations of nutrients, fibre, and beneficial compounds. So, dive into colourful salads, whole fruit snacks, or fresh dips and turn every meal into a plant party!
Here is an example of what ingredients you could consume throughout the course of 2 weeks:
Spinach, Broccoli, Bell peppers, Carrots, Courgettes, Kale, Cauliflower, Sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, Asparagus
Apple, Banana, Berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries), Dragon fruit, Orange, Mango, Kiwi, Grapes, Jackfruit, Dried fruits
Quinoa, Brown rice, Oats, Barley, Farro, Whole wheat bread, Buckwheat, Bulgur, Millet, Freekeh
Chickpeas, Lentils, Black beans, Kidney beans, Pinto beans, Edamame, Peas, Cannellini beans, Soybeans, Split peas
Nuts & Seeds
Almonds, Walnuts, Chia seeds, Flaxseeds, Sunflower seeds, Pumpkin seeds, Cashews, Pistachios, Sesame seeds, Hemp seeds
Herbs & Spices
Basil, Cilantro, Mint, Thyme, Rosemary, Oregano, Turmeric, Cumin, Paprika, Ginger
How can Soul Fruit help you achieve your 30 plant points?
Packed with natural sweetness and vibrant flavours, dried fruits, like our Soul Fruit snacks, are your delightful allies in conquering the 30 Plants a Week Challenge. Each chewy or crunchy bite is a step towards plant diversity.
Just grab a pack and enjoy it at lunch or after work to make your snacking time count in your journey to better health!
Our dried fruits can also be incorporated into some super appetising recipes. Here is a few examples: