Adopting a Plant-based Lifestyle Improves Your Health
By Linda Oaksford, COTM Chair
(Part 2 of 4 articles)
In our last Meridian, a link to the UUA’s Ethical Eating Study Guide was provided. This guide mainly discusses how adopting a plant-based diet promotes a sustainable lifestyle and environmental justice.
However, as an added perk for adopting a plant-based diet, not only are you improving our planetary health, but you’re also helping your own health! The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (https://www.pcrm.org/good-nutrition) promotes plant-based diets for good health and disease prevention. Many diseases, i.e., arthritis, cancer, diabetes (type 2), heart disease, osteoporosis, inflammation, etc., can be prevented and/or reversed by adopting a whole-food, plant-based diet. Although these two links provide recipes to some delicious meals, below is one of our first healthy-eating, environmentally-friendly recipes that can warm you and your family on a cold winter’s night.
Easy Veggie Chili
- 1 T. oil (I use olive oil)
- ½ onion, chopped
- 1 green pepper, chopped
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 1-2 cloves of garlic, diced, or 1 T. chopped garlic
- 2-3 stalks of celery (optional)
- 1 cup of sliced mushrooms (optional)
- 1 package Tofu scrambles (or some other vegetable protein, if you like)
- Several drained cans of: black beans, cannellini beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, pinto beans, or any other beans you like
- 1-3 cans of: corn, string beans, peas, and/or any other vegetables
- 1 small can of tomato paste
- 1 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes, with liquid
- 1 can of chili bean sauce
Spices (to your taste)
Garlic, Cumin, Chili powder, Red pepper flakes, Mexican oregano, Cayenne pepper, Salt and pepper
- Sauté garlic, onion and peppers (celery and mushrooms, too, if you like) in oil in a big pot on the stove, or in a slow cooker.
- Add all the ingredients until the pot is about ¾ full.
- Add spices to YOUR taste.
- Cook for at least ½ hour, or longer until you’re ready to eat. For electric slow cookers, keep warm until dinnertime. OR, cool and refrigerate. Reheat on stove or microwave when hungry.
- Serve in bowls and enjoy with toppings of your choice, salad, and corn bread for a complete meal!