Yoga For Beginners – How To Create Your Online Course

25th June 2021By DZ TeamSelf-Improvement, Skillshare

Yoga For Beginners - How To Create Your Online Course

Change Career Path - Teaching Yoga For Beginners Online

“How to kickstart online yoga for beginners”, is your go-to guide if you want to learn how to create and launch a successful online yoga course! Discover Skillshare and learn the steps and tools that you’ll need to create your online yoga business.

Did you know that yoga classes are one of the most popular type of online course topics right now? It is growing exponentially! More and more people are taking up yoga practice every day!

Online yoga also provides the perfect workout. It’s a great way to improve mental health, sleep, and support overall health. This is more important than ever, given the COVID-19 pandemic!

Who Is This Article Aimed At?

Maybe you’re already a yoga teacher and you were laid off during the pandemic? You still need to make a living and pay your bills, right?! You’re not alone, many yoga teachers were laid off from their regular teaching jobs.

Or maybe you’re not a qualified yoga teacher, but you’re just passionate about yoga? No worries, you don’t have to be a certified yoga teacher to teach on Skillshare!

The COVID-19 pandemic has made teaching yoga online a necessity and it is inspiring countless people to create their own unique yoga courses.
We’re going to show you how you can kickstart your online yoga course, and also invest in yourself, not only to survive the pandemic but to thrive beyond it! Take the plunge and get your yoga class online, so that you can start sharing it with people from all around the world!

This is the perfect time to build your online yoga business and grow a loyal online student community. Having an online yoga course will give you access to a whole new audience.

There is no doubt about it, the shift to online yoga teaching is here to stay! This has also provided a sustainable and scalable option for people.

Why Is It Important to Teach Yoga Online?

COVID-19 has significantly changed the landscape of the yoga industry. The pandemic caused all the places where in-person yoga training took place to close, on a global scale.

As a result, many yoga teachers made an instantaneous move to teaching yoga online through online classes and live sessions.

The pandemic has put a lot of pressure on the mental and physical health of people. It's times like these when people become more susceptible to mental and physical issues. Seeing the changing circumstances, the yoga community embraced the digital transformation to help people maintain their health through online yoga for beginners classes.

The increasing demand for online classes of yoga also created various new opportunities for the yoga market, which made it reach a wide base. People who previously had no interest in yoga also started searching for “yoga for beginners.”

Many people have been practising yoga at home for years, but this trend surged during the pandemic the most. The good thing is this trend is here to stay!

A 2016 study, revealed that around 65% of yoga practitioners in America now prefer to practice yoga at home. Seeing the circumstances, the chances are that these numbers have increased a lot today.

Lockdown and social distancing practices caused millions of people to lose their jobs. The increase in the use of artificial intelligence has also put many jobs at risk. Many people who never thought about teaching yoga before now see many career opportunities in this industry, which is inspiring them to change career path.

By creating your yoga course like “Yoga for Beginners,” you can reach potential students globally, without even renting a place to teach yoga! You can earn a lot of money through a single course for years!

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What are the Benefits of Teaching Yoga Online?

○ The yoga industry is considered one of the fastest-growing industries in the world, and its market worth has now reached $80 billion. There are more than 300 million people in the world who practice yoga. It indicates how vast the market is and how many amazing career opportunities you have, even if you are a beginner and want to change career path.

○ Teaching yoga online makes you professionally free. With online classes, there is no need to rent a studio, open/close it at a specific time, market your studio training in the surrounding area, and charge a specific fee to only a limited number of people.

○ You can generate a passive income stream by selling the same yoga course for years.

○ Today more than 2 billion people shop online. Seeing this trend, you can direct your students of online classes to your yoga-related products.

○ Online courses allow you to reach your global audience and teach from anywhere. It provides you with unlimited teaching options.

○ You can have a more flexible teaching schedule as there is no time restriction. For instance, if you are teaching “Yoga for Beginners,” you can record a class whenever you have time and upload it on the site according to the schedule.

○ For online courses like “Yoga for Beginners,” you need to invest less time and money compared to when you teach the same course physically in a studio. You can utilize the saved money and time in creating more passive income streams.

Choosing a Niche

The yoga niche itself is so wide and includes many micro-niches. Each micro-niche has its own advantages. You can choose a micro-niche that suits your style and preferences the best.

You can choose to teach mindfulness, pre and post-natal yoga, yoga for athletes, and the list goes on. The earning through each niche depends on several factors. However, you can expect somewhere around $4,200 and more per month. There is no limit on earning through online yoga for beginners!

How Practising Yoga can Help with the Physical And Mental Health

Yoga is a powerful practice that not only helps with physical health but also boosts mental health. You feel better mentally and physically; as a result, you gain confidence. You can practice yoga to gain the following benefits.

Improve the Quality of Lives

Yoga makes you release stress and negative energy, which eventually increases your productivity. It improves your overall health, and you start enjoying life more. You learn to ditch laziness, dullness, and inactiveness.

All in all, yoga holds the potential of improving the quality of life.

Help People Accomplish Their Goals

By practising yoga, people start becoming more productive, aware, and active. They gain their lost energy gradually and become motivated to achieve goals in their lives.

Spread Love & Positivity

Yoga helps you to get rid of negative energy. As a result, you start seeing positivity around you. When you have a positive mind, you become more cheerful and spread the love that today’s world needs the most.

May Reduce Chronic Pain

Chronic pain occurs due to an injury or a disease. Millions of people worldwide suffer from this issue. It reduces the activity level and productivity of the sufferer. Yoga could be a natural solution to this issue. Several studies indicate the positive effect of practising yoga on chronic as well as acute pain.

Improve Digestion

In humans, there is a link between intestinal function and the central nervous system. This linkage is called the gut-brain axis (GBA).

By performing yoga regularly, you can help your body manage the gut-brain axis well, which will help with digestion as well. Yoga also helps with bowel movement and blood circulation in the digestive system.

Encourage Quality Sleep

Depression, anxiety, and being overweight are some of the things that negatively affect the quality of sleep. Yoga allows you to get rid of these major sleep affecting factors, which eventually encourages sleep quality.

Do You Need to be an Expert to Become an Online Yoga Teacher?

What is an expert?

If you ask people this question, you will certainly get a whole lot of different answers. However, according to the dictionary, an expert is someone who “has knowledge or experience of a particular area.” The main words here are “knowledge” and “experience.”

So, basically, these are two elementary things you need to become an online yoga teacher. You have learnt yoga and have also experienced it as a student or even a teacher. Then you can be one of the many knowledgeable teachers out there!

You do not have to be the world’s number one teacher to believe you can teach yoga for beginners. Just don’t let your fears hold you back from taking the right step!

Even if you are planning to change career path and want to kickstart online yoga for beginners, then give yourself some time to learn and then take the chance.

You have to think beyond such questions and self-doubts.

You should be a few steps ahead of your student’s knowledge and experience in order to start teaching them yoga through online classes. If you are ahead of your students by only a “few steps”, then you can understand them better. You can teach and share skills from your personal experience and knowledge.

So, leave the wrong perception of being an expert behind and take the plunge. Say yes to the opportunities the yoga industry is throwing at you and take full advantage of them. Share the knowledge you have with the world.

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How to Make Your Course One of a Kind?

Whilst gaining your knowledge and experience, you will have learned numerous subjects like yoga philosophies, basic Sanskrit, human anatomy, human physiology and much more! So, explore yourself and ask which subject excites you and make you able to teach it passionately to others.

Finding a particular niche will help you have a clear mind and define your goals better. Students with an interest in the same field will like learning from someone who can teach them a particular subject in depth.

A yoga niche can belong to different categories like yoga style, yoga interests, etc. It can be:

○ A specific location/area: Gender, age group

○ Yoga style: Lyengar yoga, Mysore yoga, Bikram yoga, Hatha yoga, Yin yoga, Kundalini yoga

○ Yoga hybrids: Yoga and surfing, yoga for you and your dog, yoga and dance, yoga and cycling

○ Yoga interest: Mindfulness, chanting

○ Place: Rooftop, garden, sandy beach, flowing stream, on a bed of pebbles

○ Yoga therapy: Yoga for headache, yoga for back pain, yoga for anxiety and depression, yoga for restoring energy

○ Specific group of people: Yoga for fitness enthusiasts, yoga for bodybuilders, yoga for drug addicts, yoga for students, yoga for employees

Stand Out From The Crowd Checklist

You need to identify your niche so that you can differentiate yourself from your competitors. Then do what makes you stand out from the rest of the yoga teachers. For this, check the list below.

○ How different is your method of teaching?

○ How do you attract students and keep them focused during teaching?

○ Is your focus on creating a healthy community and a healthy world?

○ Do you try the latest techniques of yoga?

○ Do you keep yourself updated?

○ Do you experiment with different types of yoga, combinations, and postures?

Think about these questions and find honest answers. Doing it will help you start an amazing online yoga for beginners and conduct online classes that are one of a kind.

As more and more benefits of yoga are being revealed, many people are getting interested in it. Grab this opportunity and create a unique style, that is authentic and interesting for students of online classes.

If you are deciding to change career path, then now is the right time! Set specific goals and target a particular group to make your name in this field.

What is the Importance of Selecting a Particular Yoga Niche?

Connect with a Particular Group

There are millions of people interested in yoga. They have diverse interests and goals. It can be difficult to target all of them compared to targeting only a specific group that shares the same interests.

Therefore, try to choose a particular niche. Then look for the people who are interested only in it. They will have the same yoga-related goals and will be on the same path. It will be easier for you to help people with the same goals achieve their particular goals.

The yoga industry is full of yoga teachers who teach only basic yoga for beginners through their online classes. Specialized yoga teachers are few, which gives you an edge over the common yoga teachers who teach general stuff.

Market Your Online Classes Easily

Narrowing down your niche for yoga for beginners will help you market your online classes quite easily. You will have a clear mind which will help you stay on track and identify your district objectives.

With clear objectives in mind, you will be able to create an effective marketing strategy that appeals only to your particular audience. All in all, it will allow you to save both time and money. You can use the saved asset for expanding your course or creating more similar courses.

Stand Out From Others

Getting knowledge and skills of a broad field is easier compared to getting expertise in a narrowed niche. This is mainly because you have to learn deeply if you want to narrow down your niche. Most people opt for the easier path and learn basic yoga.

Therefore, if you narrow down your niche, you make yourself stand out among others. You have unique goals that resonate well with the goals of your unique audience. It will also enhance your integrity in the market and attract more students to your online classes.

Learn Your Niche More Deeply

Selecting a particular niche allows you to get in-depth knowledge of your field. You start gaining expertise over time. You have a focused mind and a dedicated roadmap. This helps you get specialized knowledge that not everyone will have!

It eventually makes you more confident in your skills. Your self-confidence attracts more students, and your yoga for beginners reaches more students worldwide.

If you are planning to change career path, then you have time to learn a niche deeply and start your new career in this ever-growing industry.

Become More Satisfied And Content

Teaching a niche of yoga that excites you is one way to gaining happiness in your career and life. You build your own style and methodology. Then you put your heart into teaching yoga for beginners. Your students recognize your passion and eventually become your fans. You will become more grateful and happy about teaching yoga in online classes.

Before selecting a niche, it is best to first do some research. Research how many people are teaching it. This will give you an idea of the scope of your niche. Don’t let your doubts stop you from making the right decision. Don’t try to work for everyone because you will end up working for no one.

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Setting Up The Best Yoga Studio At Home

Keep in mind these tips for setting up the best yoga studio at home for your online classes.

○ Try to film yourself around a regular domestic life to create a calmer environment. You can choose a background that is neutral. You can also place some yoga-related accessories if that is feasible and affordable for you.

○ Light up your background to catch and maintain the attention of students. For this purpose, you can try placing table lamps, candles, and fairy lights in the background.

○ Turn the front camera on to improve your filming, and make sure you are recording the right view for your online classes.

○ Before recording yoga for beginners, try rehearsing in front of the mirror and improve yourself where you find yourself lacking. Remember, practice makes perfect!

Identify Your Preferred Teaching Style

There are different teaching styles that you can use for yoga for beginners. Ask yourself which method you prefer or are proficient in.

There are three common teaching methods of online instructional videos.

○ Recorded online classes: Record a video when you have time, then upload it on the website.

○ Live classes: Give instructions and teach during live online classes.

○ Voice over lessons: Give instructions through your audio.

Test different teaching styles and get the feedback of your students to select the style that both teacher and students alike.

Tips For Delivering Your Online Classes The Right Way

Keep Calm

Try to understand the mental and concept level of your students, then start with a slow pace when you are teaching new concepts so that they can grasp new topics with more clarity.

Give Instructions in an Order

Yoga for beginners may seem choppy when taught through online classes. To prevent it, try to maintain a logical sequence in your instructions. You could start with sitting on the mat, then standing up and teaching gradually.

Easy And Simple Transitions

Keep transitions easy so that students do not feel burdened.

Repeat When Necessary

New or difficult concepts can be hard to grasp. So, repeat yourself to keep the flow and make concepts easier.

Find Your Yoga Voice

To catch and maintain the attention of your students, it is important to use a calm, cheerful, encouraging, and sing-song like yoga voice. Practice and find your own yoga voice.

How to Connect with the Students and Answer Their Questions

Give Exceptional Learning Experience

Provide your students with an exceptional learning experience. It will keep them motivated, and you will get better results. They will also promote your course among their friends and family by sharing their experiences.

Maintain Professionalism

Stay professional and polite to maintain a motivated environment and inspire your students.

Address Issues on Time

Issues will occur, so be ready to listen to the complaints. Try to resolve the issues as soon as possible so that students feel supported.

Keep Your Students Engaged

One of the most important things to make your yoga course successful is interacting with the students and learning their course-related needs better. You can have Q&A sessions or even get feedback about how to improve online classes or what more content to add to the course, etc.

Keep Yourself Updated, Keep Growing

Never stop learning, as knowledge is the path to success. The world is constantly evolving, so keep yourself updated regarding yoga teaching. If possible, try to attend yoga conferences and events so that you can interact with other people in this field, and learn new things.

If you want to change career path to yoga teaching, then the more you interact with people in this field, the faster you will learn!

You can also join live webinars or online classes if you cannot travel. There are many online sources that teach online yoga training. This will help you learn the changes occurring in the yoga industry, and the latest trends.

In addition to this, you can share the latest developments in the yoga industry with your students and gain trust more.

The Bottom Line

Due to the digitalization of the world, it is now easier for people to have online access to yoga for beginners.

The yoga industry has survived the pandemic and emerged stronger! It has even created many new trends. These trends will keep growing even after the pandemic.

Want to start online yoga for beginners to make your name in this ever-growing industry?

Then follow all the tips, tricks and methods described above and take your online yoga course to the next level.

Check out our in-depth guide: "How to Create an Online Course for Skillshare."

 

Join Skillshare today!

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The Amethyst Crystal – Amazing Healing Power for Anxiety & Stress

7th February 2021By DZ TeamSelf-Improvement

The Amethyst crystal can help you alleviate the symptoms of anxiety and stress.

According to studies, alternative medicine perceivably helps alleviate anxiety as much as conventional medicine. Crystal healing is one of those alternative therapies, but, what’s the theory behind it?

Everything oscillates with its frequency. Crystals and humans have their own vibrations and frequencies as well.

When we get in contact with crystals having the same vibrations and different frequencies, our body aligns with the frequency of the stone. This high-frequency state makes us feel better and energetic.

Since the emergence of Coronavirus across the globe, the trend of crystal healing has soared. The unprecedented growth in the crystal market indicates that people are trying to ease their stress and anxiety through crystal therapy in these trying times.

Amethyst is a semi-precious crystal that has shown promising results in stress and anxiety alleviation.

Benefits of Amethyst Crystal

The Amethyst crystal offers a plethora of benefits; let’s discuss them in detail.

As an Effective Tranquillizer

Probably the most prominent benefit of the Amethyst crystal is that it acts as a natural tranquilizer. This makes the crystal quite effective at stress and anxiety reduction.

Keeps You Sober

Drinking worsens your stress and anxiety. The Amethyst crystal induces a calming effect in your mind, which prevents you from getting addicted to alcohol.  Moreover, if you are recovering from any addiction, the Amethyst crystal helps you achieve that as well!

Helps You Sleep

Insomnia is a sleep disorder that disturbs your sleeping cycle. You may find it difficult to fall asleep and may feel tired after waking up.

Sleep deprivation also exacerbates stress. Thankfully, the proper use of the Amethyst crystal can help you fall asleep easily, keeping your mind fresh and warding off stress and anxiety.

Boosts Immune System

Our Immune system is responsible for fighting diseases, whether it be physical or mental. So, your mental health also depends upon the strength of your immune system.

The Amethyst crystal boosts the immune system, protecting you against stress and anxiety.

Improves Patience

One of the major causes of chronic stress is impatience. We feel agitated and frustrated when things don’t go the way we planned.

The Amethyst crystal helps you to be patient; it helps you remain in a grounded state, which keeps the anxiety and stress away.

Helps Us Feel Good About Ourselves

Many a time, the root cause of stress is the feeling of being unworthy or inadequate. If you ever feel that way, use the Amethyst crystal to feel confident and worthy again.

Amethyst Crystal Healing Properties

The Amethyst Crystal-Amazing Healing Power for Anxiety-and-Stress-Diet Zest Article

Emotional Healing

The Amethyst crystal is an amazing emotional healer. It allows you to deal with the emotional pain and grievances of routine life.

Emotional stability and strength are what allow you to get through difficult times. You can find the inner strength to deal with undesirable events of life by using the Amethyst crystal.

Emotional highs and lows are inevitable in life, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t do anything about them. The Amethyst crystal will give you strength in dealing with the emotional highs and lows.

Plus, the crystal is also known to cleanse the aura of a person wearing it. It’s recommended that you wear it on your throat or heart.

Mental Healing

The Amethyst crystal not only alleviates stress but also inspires creativity and psychic abilities in a person.

We tend to feel chaotic and anxious while facing a problem. So, if you get chaotic for any reason, use the Amethyst crystal; it will calm your mind, toning down the racing thoughts.

Not only that, but the crystal also helps in decision making. By wearing it, you’ll probably become more capable of making the right decisions in your life.

Moreover, the higher frequency of the Amethyst crystal replaces negative thoughts with positive ones. If you are seeing nightmares, the crystal has an amazing power to help you with that as well.

Just make sure you don’t use the stone if you have schizophrenia or paranoia. People with these problems may not be able to handle the high intensity of the crystal.

Body Healing

In addition to being effective in stress alleviation, the Amethyst crystal also helps you maintain good physical health.

It cleanses the blood and circulatory system and is also good for sunburn and itching of skin.

Plus, using the Amethyst crystal strengthens the immune system, reduces swelling and injuries, and improves hormone production.

Spiritual Healing

Wearing the Amethyst crystal purifies your surroundings from negative energy. It inspires intuition and promotes spiritual wisdom.

How to Use Amethyst Crystal for Anxiety and Stress

You can easily use the Amethyst crystal to relieve stress and anxiety in your routine life.

Place a small piece of the crystal in the middle of your forehead between your eyes. This will help with the headaches induced by stress.

Alternatively, lay down and place a small piece of the Amethyst crystal over the areas where you feel pain.

Additionally, the Amethyst crystal can act as a healer for other bodily pains and ailments. Just place the crystal beside you while you sleep, and you’ll feel the difference.

You can place the Amethyst crystal on your throat and heart to enhance your consciousness.

If you are suffering from insomnia, place the crystal under your pillow to let it help you go to sleep.

Other ways to use Amethyst to relieve anxiety and stress are:

  • Wearing it as jewellery
  • Carrying it around in your pocket or purse
  • Placing it in your home
  • Taking a bath with it
  • Drinking crystal-infused water
  • Doing yoga with it
  • Meditate next to it

Final Thoughts

The number of people falling victim to mental illness is increasing. That is why many people are now opting for alternative medicine to help alleviate stress and anxiety. They are finding that one of the most effective ways to achieve this is by using crystal therapy.

There are so many ways you can use the Amethyst crystal. You should purchase one today and experience its amazing healing powers for yourself! 🙂

Why not join our community , we'd be delighted to have you on board! 🙂

Stress Symptoms and Stress Management

6th February 2021By DZ TeamSelf-Improvement

Stress Symptoms and Stress Management

How to Recognize, Manage and Reduce Stress

In this article, we will be discussing stress symptoms and stress management. Hopefully, you will learn how you can recognize stress and manage it effectively! 🙂

Stress is a natural response of your body to danger; it helps you deal with emergencies. It helps in day to day challenges, provides you with the strength to prevent undesirable events, and keeps you on your toes to get stuff done.

So, stress isn’t bad. It’s just the excess of stress that causes problems.

Stress can manifest in a variety of forms. It isn’t always easy to recognize; most of the time, people don’t even know they are going through chronic stress.

The aim here is to recognize stress symptoms and address them so that they don’t turn into long-term issues.
While it may not seem like an easy task, you can manage your stress by doing a few simple things.

Let’ get started.

Recognizing, Managing and Reducing Stress

The modern lifestyle is a major source of stress. While some people manage it well (some even thrive under stressful situations), others may feel overwhelmed by it.

Long and frequent stress symptoms may be a sign that you are suffering from chronic stress. Chronic stress can lead to many complications if it not addressed in a timely fashion.

Recognizing Stress

Stress symptoms aren’t always obvious; stress can creep up on you without you even knowing about it. It starts to feel normal. This makes it quite dangerous for your mental and physical health.

So, recognizing stress symptoms is as important as diagnosing any other illness. You can only address the issue once it’s identified.

Stress overload can show its effects in various forms. Stress symptoms can be cognitive, emotional, physical, or behavioral.

Cognitive symptoms include:

  • Inability to concentrate
  • Memory issues
  • Poor judgment
  • Racing thoughts
  • Persistent negative thoughts

Behavioral symptoms include:

  • Eating excessively (or less than normal)
  • Oversleeping or sleeplessness
  • Avoiding responsibilities
  • Going in isolation
  • Using drugs for temporary relaxation
  • Nail-biting

As strange as this may sound, chronic stress can affect you physically as well. The physical stress symptoms include:

  • Body pains or aches
  • Dizziness
  • Loss of libido
  • Increased heart rate
  • Constipation (or diarrhea)

Emotional symptoms of stress, for most people, are the most difficult to deal with. While experiencing stress overload, you may encounter:

  • Depression
  • Sadness
  • Agitation (Anxiety)
  • Anger
  • Irritability
  • Loneliness

What Stresses You Out?

Stressors or the events that trigger stress vary from person to person. A stressor for some people may not be a cause of worry for others at all.

Sometimes, big events like job loss, financial issues, a loss of someone, divorce, injury, or retirement can linger on and make you distressed.

Or, if you have a sensitive personality, little things can also trigger a stress response.

Whatever the trigger may be, you can achieve effective stress management by doing a few things.

 

Stress Symptoms and Stress Management- Diet Zest Article

Manage and Reduce Stress

So, let’s discuss the ways you can achieve effective stress management.

Eat Healthy

Healthy foods don’t only keep your waistline slim, but they are also good for your mental health. A healthy diet helps in stress alleviation, keeps a good mood, and strengthens your immune system.

On the other hand, junk food can worsen your mental health.

Avoid junk food and excessive sugar even though they may appear more desirable in a stressful state.

Connect with Loved Ones and Friends

Share your feelings with the loved ones and your mates. Having a supportive social circle makes stress management so much easier.

Additionally, join a support group or an online community to connect with others. If you aren’t comfortable sharing with others, get professional help; it almost always helps.

Exercise

Exercise helps with sleep and improves mood. Getting a deep full night’s sleep is necessary to rewire your brain. You can manage stress better when you are well-rested.

Additionally, exercise releases the happy hormone, endorphin. So, working out can actually make you feel good. Do exercise regularly because it also improves cognitive function and alleviates stress symptoms.

Relax

While you can’t eliminate stress from your life, techniques like Yoga, breathing, and meditation can help reduce stress symptoms significantly.

Learn to relax now and then. You’ll be able to stay calm even under stressful situations if you practice relaxation techniques effectively.

Don’t Leave Your Hobbies

Hobbies and leisure activities are a great way to reduce stress. Time spent on the activities that you love is good for your mental health.

Studies suggest that people who have hobbies are less prone to stress.

It may not seem like such a productive thing to do but taking out time for leisure can actually boost your productivity, as you will feel and perform better.

Practice Self-Talk

What you focus on grows. When you think positive, positive things are bound to happen!

Positive self-talk pulls your attention from potential negative thoughts, helping you reduce stress and feel good.

Say positive things to yourself anytime you feel negativity looming around, and you’ll feel the difference.

Practice Gratitude

According to studies, gratitude can improve your mental health. Keeping a gratitude journal reminds you of the good things that you have in your life, pulling you away from negativity.

So, start a gratitude journal and write at least 1 thing you are grateful for every day.

Identify and Cut Out Stressors

Think about what stresses you out. It could be news, getting into an argument, excessive use of gadgets, and even coffee.

Eliminate those things and replace them with the things that relax you.

Negative thoughts can also contribute to stress; be mindful of what you think when you feel stressed. Replace your negative thoughts with positive ones.

Final Thoughts

Chronic stress can affect your mental and physical health. Knowing that you are going through chronic stress isn’t straightforward. However, it’s not that difficult either!

Recognize stress symptoms and address them before they develop into long-term issues.

Stress symptoms can be cognitive, emotional, behavioral, or physical. Remember, you can achieve stress management and alleviate these symptoms easily. Just incorporate some of the methods we have described in this article!

Make some lifestyle changes like exercising, socializing, eating healthy, taking time off, removing stressors, and practicing gratitude. You’ll see your stress levels reduced in no time!

To get you on the right track, why not join our community  - “Healing through food” movement. We'd love to have you on board! 🙂

Self-Isolation and Taking Care of Yourself

1st February 2021By DZ TeamSelf-Improvement

Self-Isolation and Taking Care of Yourself

Taking Care of Yourself During Self-Isolation

Self-isolation can be daunting, particularly when no one can certainly say things will go back to normal soon.

Taking care of yourself is something that can get you through this tough time. Want to know how to do that? Continue reading.

Self-care includes practices where you take care of your mental, physical, and emotional health.

Plus, by taking care of yourself, you will not only get through this tough phase, but you will also come out on the other side an improved person.

Let’s see how taking care of yourself can make the self-isolation period easier to manage, productive, and even enjoyable.

Eat Healthy Foods

Keeping a healthy diet is crucial whether you are living in a pandemic or not. However, the current scenario calls for a little extra care.

Eat foods that are good for your mental and physical health. Foods that are rich in healthy fat, proteins, and important minerals will keep you active.

Stay Active

As much as it’s tempting to remain in bed, it’s not good for your health. Try to move as much as you can. Go for a walk, play with your pet, have a little exercise in your room.

Anything that keeps you on your feet will help you maintain a good mood by releasing happy hormones called endorphins. It’s great for stress-relief.

Go out for a walk or exercise regularly to keep your immune system strong. Also, don’t sit for long hours even if you are doing something productive; it could be dangerous for your back.

Practice Meditation

Our thoughts tend to speed up when we are anxious; it’s normal when you’re going through a self-isolation period. However, you can calm your mind through proven techniques.

Mindfulness meditation is an effective way to do that. All you need to do is “focus on your breathing”. As simple as that sounds, it may be difficult in the beginning, as your mind will try to drift off.

This is normal though. Just bring the focus back and keep doing it for 10 minutes. Doing this for 10 minutes can have a positive impact on your mental health.

Many apps can help you with it. Insight Timer is a great option if you need a recommendation. Or, you can read about mindful breathing tips here.

Not a fan of meditation? Don’t worry! There is an alternative: Just practice the art of focus in everyday life. Focus on one thing at a time.

For instance, don’t think about the future or the past while you are having a nice cup of relaxing herbal tea. Give your full attention to your lovely beverage; the sense of warmth, the taste, the rising steam. In short, always focus on the present moment.

Connect Yourself Socially

Self-isolation doesn’t mean you socially isolate yourself too. While you can’t meet your mates in person, you can always arrange virtual meetups.

Keep in touch with your family and friends through text, video chat, or the good old phone call. We are all stuck in this calamity; share your feelings with them and ask them about theirs.

Plus, there are many forums where you can find like-minded people to talk to. Explore social media groups to get yourself involved in the communities of your interest.

Limit News Intake

While keeping yourself up to date is important, over-consuming the news can be detrimental to your mental health. This is especially so when it’s about sensitive topics like the coronavirus.

Limit your news intake. Don’t consume more than you need. Social media is awash with coronavirus talk as well; limit social media scrolling in this time of self-isolation and keep yourself busy in productive and fun activities.

Keep Learning

If you have been thinking about learning something new, now is the time. It could be anything; you can learn a new language, stitching, drawing, painting, or a digital skill that you can sell online.

Sometimes, our own goals can be overwhelming. Just make sure you set achievable goals. A sense of achievement is a great way to keep yourself motivated and on track for progress.

Practice Gratitude

According to clinical studies, people who write regularly about the things they are grateful for (gratitude journal) report better overall well-being.

What you focus on grows. So, keep a gratitude journal and write in it every day about the things you are grateful for.

Gratitude will not only improve your mental health, but it’s also great for fighting physical ailments.

Read Your Favorite Book

Have a book on your desk that you’ve been wanting to read but couldn’t? Self-isolation is an ideal time for reading enthusiasts.

Sometimes, distraction can be good for you. It takes your mind off the stuff going on around you for a while.

Watch Your Favorite Movie/TV Show

If you are not into reading, there is a lot of exciting content online. Self-isolation shouldn’t be boring; turn on the TV and stream your favorite movie or TV show.

If you like jokes, you’ll get a long list of comedy TV shows that you can watch with your loved ones and share a laugh.

Play With Your Pet (Or Get One)

Pets are innocent, cute, loving, and playful. While taking care of yourself, let your pet take care of you as well. They can be a great asset in this stressful time.

It’s normal to get anxious, stressed-out, and even depressed during self-isolation. Pets are a great way to alleviate those feelings. So, spend time with your pet or get one if you can.

Final Thoughts

Self-isolation can be tough, but thankfully, small steps in the right direction can make it easier. In fact, you can take it as an opportunity to better yourself.

You don’t have to be socially isolated either. Fortunately, in this digital age, you have everything you need to keep in touch with your loved ones all the time.

Stay active, read your favorite books, watch your favorite content, play with your pet, learn something new, practice meditation and gratitude, and limit your news intake. You’ll see positive changes in your life in no time.

Why not join our community  - “Healing through food” movement. We'd be delighted to have you! 🙂

B12 Foods And Workouts For Vegans: Advice & Tips

23rd January 2021By DZ TeamGoing Vegan

B12 Foods And Workouts For Vegans

B12 Advice & Workout Tips For Vegans

In this article we will be looking at some of the best vitamin B12 foods and explaining why B12 is so important. We’ll also share some fantastic workouts tips for vegans! 🙂

Three B12 Foods Suitable for Vegan Lifestyles

In terms of importance, vitamin B12 is right up there as far as the human body is concerned. This water-soluble vitamin is responsible for a whole host of physiological processes. It also plays a key role in bodily functions, which literally keep you alive!

We need vitamin B12 in order for our metabolisms to function as they should. We need it for the metabolization of fats and proteins, and it plays a vital role in the production of haemoglobin, and much more!

From an athletic standpoint, vitamin B12 is not only important for athletic performance, but also vital for a healthy body composition too.

Vegans, (and those who follow a plant-based diet), often struggle to consume enough vitamin B12. This is because it is largely found in animal-derived ingredients. However, there are numerous plant-based foods out there which are rich in this very vitamin. This is what we’ll be looking at in this article.

B12 Foods And Workouts For Vegans Advice and Tips-Diet Zest Article

Here are several B12 foods suitable for vegan lifestyles:

Tempeh

This is one of the best B12 foods that is suitable for vegan diets and lifestyles.

Tempeh is an Indonesian soy product that is packed full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, and probiotic benefits.

Made from soybeans, along with added whole grains and other beans, the soybeans are cooked and then fermented, before being pressed into a block. You may be wondering where the B12 comes from, (this is because the beans don’t actually contain it). Well, the B12 is actually produced during the fermentation process!

A 100g serving of tempeh will provide you with as much as 14.8mcg of this vitamin, and it also goes great in salads and stir fries.

Chlorella

As well as B12 foods, vegan-friendly supplements such as chlorella have proved to be very popular over the last several years, as people are finally realising just how healthy they really are.

Chlorella is an algae, which is a nutritional powerhouse. It is loaded full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, fibre, and other nutrients which the human body thrives upon.

Chlorella can only be consumed as a supplement, since in its natural state it has a tough cellular wall which the human digestive system cannot digest and breakdown. So instead, it’s processed and turned into supplements in the form of powder, capsules, tablets, and liquid extracts.

100g of chlorella provides between 80 and 100mcg of vitamin B12.

Fortified Breakfast Cereals

Another great example of vitamin B12 foods is fortified breakfast cereals.

The B12 found in these cereals is synthetic, so is not derived from animals. Although cereals are often not recommended for healthy diets and lifestyles, if you choose the right cereals you can increase your nutrient intakes quite noticeably!

For example, cereals such as bran flakes are loaded full of dietary fibre. They also contain iron, folate (B12) niacin, and much more!

Many athletes will often eat fortified cereal before a race. This is not only for the carbohydrate content, but also because it is required to produce new and healthy red blood cells. Thus, enabling oxygen to be shuttled around the body, where required. The more oxygen these cells can transport to our muscles, the harder they will work and the higher our anaerobic thresholds will become.

Put simply, the B12 in fortified cereals will help to increase your energy levels and ensure that your muscles can work harder before they succumb to fatigue.

Different cereals have different ratios of B12, so read the packaging and see what works for you! 🙂

Workouts for Vegans

Years ago, if you dined out and wished to order a vegan-friendly meal, you’d be lucky if you were offered anything more exciting than garlic mushrooms on toast! Nowadays, more restaurants, cafes, and fast-food outlets are offering vegan-friendly meals. So, this alone is proof of the popularity of veganism!

That said, in this section we’re not looking at vegan diets, we’re looking at workouts for vegans.
As vegans consume foods which are sometimes lacking in certain macronutrients, finding the right workouts for vegans can be tricky.

For example, a vegan looking to tone up (and maybe burn a couple of pounds of fat), would not follow the same workout program as a 280-pound meat-eating bodybuilder who is looking to bulk up before his next contest! 🙂

If you’re a vegan who is looking to get in shape but aren’t sure where to begin, here are a few tried and tested workouts for vegans which are ideal.

B12 Foods And Workouts For Vegans Advice & Tips–Diet Zest Blog

Vegan Weight Training Guidelines

Forget what people say about vegans not getting enough protein to be able to build muscle, that is absolute nonsense! There are countless plant-based protein sources out there that are ideal for vegans. Not to mention the many different vegan protein supplements.

Plant-based dieters can follow similar workouts for vegans that would be suitable for meat eaters. The only real exception here is that workouts should be kept slightly shorter.

Stick to these workouts for vegan guidelines and you’ll be absolutely fine:

Keep workouts short and aim for no more than 45-minutes per session

Train one muscle group each week

Train heavier and aim for lower reps

Stick with 4 exercises for big muscle groups and 3 exercises for smaller muscle groups

Muscle Building Workouts for Vegans

Sunday – Off
Monday – Chest and triceps
Tuesday – back and biceps
Wednesday – Off
Thursday – Legs
Friday – Shoulders
Saturday – Off

Chest & Triceps

Flat bench barbell bench presses – 4 sets of 6 - 10 repetitions
Incline dumbbell press – 4 sets of 4 – 6 reps
Push ups – 4 sets of 10 reps
Cable crossovers – 3 sets of 10 reps
Triceps overhead cable extensions – 3 sets of 15 reps
EZ bar or dumbbell skull crushers – 4 -5 sets of 12 - 16 reps
Close-grip flat barbell bench presses – 3 sets of 10 - 15 reps

Back & Biceps

Lat pulldowns – 5 sets of 5 – 8 reps
Deadlifts – 5 sets of 3 reps
T-bar rows – 5 sets of 5 – 8 reps
Dumbbell rows – 4 sets of 8 reps per arm
Spider curls – 2 sets of 12 - 18 reps
Hammer curls – 3 sets of 10 reps per arm
Preacher curls – 3 sets of 10 reps

Legs

Barbell back squats – 4 sets of 5 reps
Leg curls – 4 sets of 8 reps
Heavy machine leg presses – 4 sets of 6 – 8 repetitions
Hamstring curls – 4 sets of 10 reps
Walking lunges – 4 sets of 10 - 12 repetitions per leg
Calf raises – 4 sets of 20 reps

Shoulders

Heavy seated dumbbell shoulder presses – 4 sets of 5 – 8 repetitions
Standing barbell military press – 4 sets of 8 reps
Lateral raises – 4 sets of 10 reps
Viking presses on a machine – 4 sets of 8 - 10 reps
Barbell upright rows – 4 sets of 5 – 8 reps
Heavy barbell shrugs – 4 sets of 6 – 10 reps

The Importance of Efficient Workouts for Vegans

There are of course many workouts for vegans for you to follow. This ranges from workouts based on burning fat and getting fit, to workouts for vegans which are designed to promote strength increases.

As long as you are following a vegan diet and lifestyle that is healthy and balanced, and you’re getting the right macros and micronutrients, you’ll find these workouts for vegans will work wonders!

You can also check out our Personalised Grocery List service. This will provide you with tailored vegan and plant-based grocery list. It's specially put together for you, based upon the food preferences that you select!

Also, consider joining our community  - our “Healing through food” movement! 🙂

Foods That Help Depression and Anxiety: Plant-Based

17th January 2021By DZ TeamGoing Vegan, Self-Improvement

Foods That Help Depression and Anxiety - Vegan and Plant-Based

Plant-Based Diet Tips to Combat Depression

In this article we will share some foods that help depression. We also provide some useful general tips to help you improve your overall well-being.

Mental illness is one of the most actively increasing threats to public health, out of which depression and anxiety disorders are rising rapidly. It is proven that diet is correlated with all such diseases. An 18-month study published in the American Journal of Health Promotion stated that a plant-based diet might alleviate depression and anxiety. It also conveyed that specific nutrients help reduce stress and promote a sense of well-being.

To find out more about foods that help depression, please read on! 🙂

Vegan Food Recipes are Super Quick and Delicious

A growing body of research shows that eating whole rich diet, plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, and grains may not only help prevent major depression and anxiety, but also treat it once it has started. Striving to eat a plant-based diet doesn’t have to be boring! 🙂

You can get portion of greens daily by adding them to soups, smoothies, juices, curries, pasta dishes or simply a good old-fashioned side of steamed greens to retain content of both magnesium and B vitamins.

Boosts Your Mood

Vegan and plant-based foods are a rich supplier of vitamins and nutrients that helps fight illnesses. For example, Vitamin C stimulates your body to produce antibodies and white blood cells that strengthen the immune system to ward off diseases. At the same time, Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that helps combat infections. Thus, a healthy body with lower chances of illness puts you in a good mood without making you feel lethargic or miserable any longer.

Better Quality of Sleep and Reduced Stress

Our bodies demand sleep to rest, restore and to reduce the chances of health issues like elevated blood pressure, and Alzheimer's disease. Magnesium and calcium maintain a more regulated sleeping cycle. In addition to this, the release of serotonin calms your brain. Also, antioxidants found in vitamins A, C and E reduce free-radical damage, at the time of stress. A study published in the Nutritional Journal found showed that participants levels of stress decreased after just two weeks.

 

Foods That Help Depression and Anxiety-Plant-Based–Diet Zest Blog

List of The Foods That Help Depression

Leafy green vegetables are the nutrient substations. It also comprises several vitamins and minerals. The rich content of folic acid and iron present in these vegetables protects you against dementia and depression.

All nuts and seeds contain tryptophan that is converted into serotonin inside the body. Although different nuts like cashews, Brazil nuts, flaxseed, chia seeds, and hazelnuts effectively enhance omega-3 fats. Walnuts are the highest plant-based sources of omega-3, takes over as they support the entire brain's health by keeping the blood sugar level stabilized. A 2019 study found that depression scores remained 26% lower among those who consumed nearly 1/4 cup of walnuts every day. Thus, nuts and seeds are also considered one of the best foods that help depression.

Brazil nut- These are the richest source of selenium. People deficient in selenium usually feel depressed and anxious. Thus, two Brazil nuts per day help restore your mental well-being.

Mushrooms are one of the few sources of the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D for the vegans with minimal tryptophan levels.

Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamins and calcium, which helps lower blood pressure and maintain a proper sleep cycle.

Turmeric contains the chemical curcumin, which shows many similar properties to pharmaceutical drugs used to handle anxiety disorders.

Bananas contain rich content of serotonin, for mood balancing and daily body functioning. They also contain Vitamin C and potassium, which enhances nerve and muscle health.

Avocados comprises of almost 20 minerals and vitamins. It also contains tryptophan that promotes a good mood.

Beans and legumes are excellent sources of fiber, vitamins, and protein along with folate and polyphenols that help maintain a healthy gut.

Foods to Avoid

Sugar and processed food are great contributors to anxiety and depression, resulting in inflammation throughout the body and brain. The quick pick me ups- a cup of coffee and processed food stands in for a complete breakfast, and healthy fresh fruits and vegetables replaced by high fat and high-calorie fast foods. This cycle needs to be cracked by incorporating healthy and tasty plant-based Foods That Help Depression.

You can check out some of our recipe ideas and our Personalised Grocery List service.

Also, why not consider joining our community  - “Healing through food” movement.

Save Earth: Stop Eating Meat!

10th January 2021By DZ TeamEnvironment

Save Earth: Stop Eating Meat!

Let's Save Our Planet

You may be asking yourself; how can I save Earth by giving up meat? Well, we are going to explain, so read on!

Meat has always been a part of the diet of the majority of humans on Earth. However, we never really consumed it the way we do today. In the past, meat was a food to only be consumed on special occasions, and most families only had it on Sundays. The rest of their diet was made up of vegetables, fruits, legumes, cereals, and other plants. Eating meat also usually wasn’t an easy feat. It had to be hunted for, or the family had to kill their own livestock.

Contrasting that to today, when we have meat readily available to us 24/7, and some people have it on their plate several times per day. One can’t help but wonder what impact this change has had on the planet we live on.

Getting meat onto our plate is as easy as walking into a supermarket and picking it up off a shelf – and that’s exactly what most people do! However, this change doesn’t come without its consequences, especially when it comes to impact on mother nature. Knowing this, what can we do to save Earth from our new consumption patterns?

Save Earth - Stop Eating Meat – Diet Zest Article

The environmental footprint of meat

Meat pollutes the planet in many different aspects. This is why we have divided its impact into categories of environmental issues and challenges.

Contribution to climate change

Meat has a remarkably high carbon footprint. In fact, data from Our World in Data shows that it isn’t as much where our food comes from that affects our carbon footprint, but what the food is. In meat, many factors contribute to the carbon footprint, but none are as unavoidable as the digestive system of animals.

You may be wondering why it is that beef, lamb, and mutton have by far the highest carbon footprint of all foods. This is because cows and sheep produce methane as they digest (a fast-acting greenhouse gas), that’s very dangerous in the short run.

Deforestation and habitat destruction

To make space for all the food for livestock, rainforests are often being cut down and replaced with fields to cultivate livestock feed. Rainforests aren’t just places of outstanding natural beauty. They are also home to a wide variety of plants and animals going extinct because of deforestation. Often, other foods get mistakenly blamed for this process, when in fact, animal agriculture is one of the leading causes!

Take this, for example – one common crop known for being cultivated in areas where rainforests had been cut down, is soy. However, did you know that most of this soy (80%) is fed to livestock?

 

Cause of future pandemics

Most of us don’t remember an occurrence that would negatively impact our lives as much as the COVID-19 pandemic. Did you know that three-quarters of new diseases humans are affected by come from animals?

Factory farms increase the likelihood of disease spreading from animals to humans, but so do other practices associated with meat production. Mainly, it’s the deforestation process caused by the need for livestock feed. As humans are cutting down forests, they come into contact with wild species, some of which could be carrying highly infectious diseases.

While this isn’t strictly an environmental issue, the pandemic has also had a negative impact on the environment. This is due to the increased need for single-use plastic or increase in food waste.

Can’t we just eat organic?

Eating organic, grass-fed meat is often used as an alternative and referred to as more sustainable and ethical. So, can’t we just switch to organic meats to resolve the issue?

The short answer is no. Now, here is the long answer. Grass-fed, organic meat takes a lot more land to produce. This is because the animals need space to run around outside. This is much better for the animals. However, there simply isn’t enough land on Earth to sustain the demand animal agriculture is receiving now. If we want to reduce our impact on the environment and save Earth, we will need to reduce our consumption. Just switching to a more ethical and eco-friendly source is not enough.

Additionally, eating organic doesn’t decrease environmental threats related to meat production at all. For example, all cows will always produce methane as they digest. This cannot be reduced by producing beef organically.

How to stop eating meat?

If you are someone who doesn’t really enjoy meat in the first place, you may find going vegetarian a piece of cake. However, as we all have different likes and dislikes, you may also be someone who eats meat daily, and can’t imagine giving it up. While in that scenario, it may be a little harder for you to stop eating meat, it’s not impossible. It actually makes for a more rewarding experience in the end! 🙂

In order to save earth, the first thing to keep in mind is that you don’t need to stop eating meat overnight. If you’re someone who doesn’t want to see any more meat after finding out about its environmental impact, certainly do so. However, if you don’t do well with sudden changes (as most of us don’t), eliminate one type of meat at a time, until you’ve stopped eating meat completely. For example, dedicate your first month to quitting red and processed meats. Next, give up chicken and other poultry in the second month. Then, dedicate the third month to eliminating fish and seafood from your diet. Lastly, give up any hidden meat, such as gelatine, in your last month.

There are plant-based alternatives to meat available in many stores – make use of them to satisfy your cravings. No, they are not going to taste exactly the same, but plant-based food manufacturers are making more progress every day. Keep an open mind and experiment with what you can find in the vegetarian section of the supermarket.

Summing Up

Lastly, always keep in mind why you’ve decided to stop eating meat – to save Earth. Yes, some steps are going to be challenging, but always keep the end goal in mind!

If you need help to take your next step into a meat free lifestyle, why not check out our Personalised Grocery List service.

We'd also be delighted to have you join our community - our amazing “Healing through food” movement!

Vegan Foods List for Veganuary

4th January 2021By DZ TeamGoing Vegan

Vegan Foods List for Veganuary

Happy Veganuary!

Start your Veganuary off with this helpful vegan foods list, so you can walk in the grocery store with confidence!

It’s Veganuary again! It’s time to start the year off with wholesome plant-food goodness. Whether you are already vegan, transitioning, or just trying it out, this helpful vegan foods list will give you some great ideas on what to shop for. Our vegan foods list will provide you with a great variety to make your meals amazing, and not miss out on any nutrients. You will feel better and start your year off great, with nutrient rich food to fuel your body.

 

How to step up your Veganuary

One of the best ways you can fire up your vegan game is by trying out many different plant-based whole foods. This means food that comes in its natural unprocessed form. Nothing is added or taken away. These can be foods like lentils, fruit, vegetables, oats, nuts, and seeds. Make sure to try out new recipes that look interesting and enjoyable for you.

Of course, if you have favorite meat substitutes like veggie sausages, smoked tofu, veggie burgers, keep them. These foods are still tasty, and if they make your vegan experience enjoyable, all the better. However, it is good to use them moderately as many are quite high in salt, refined fats, and other ingredients. The idea is to make veganism fun and delicious. However, make sure to include whole foods with them. They should be a gateway food to more plant-based foods.

Health perks

Plant-based foods are rich in antioxidants and can reduce inflammation in the body. Why is this important? When our body lacks antioxidants, there is an imbalance of free radicals. These free radicals (while necessary for immune and healing functions) can wreak havoc on the body over time. This leads to inflammation which can damage the DNA in our cells, leading to cancer growth.

Plant-based food also has an abundance of fiber. Fiber is paramount, given the statistic that 97% of Americans are fiber deficient. Moreover, fiber is both great and necessary for human health. It keeps our digestive system running smooth, it keeps our heart working at its best, and it keeps us fuller, which can help metabolism and manage weight.

Eating a plant-based diet can improve our longevity, prevent heart disease, diabetes, promote healthy cholesterol, regulate blood pressure and blood sugar levels. This can prevent many debilitating and costly conditions, as well as many needless deaths.

Benefits for the environment

Veganuary is gaining popularity due to the lockdowns, people trying new things, and increasing concerns for the environment. A record 400 000 people signed up to the Veganuary pledge last year. This is followed by 250,000 in 2019, and 170,000 in 2018. Restaurant closures have also forced people to cook more at home.

Eating a diverse plant-based diet helps the environment by encouraging a more diverse food supply. Much of the agriculture on the planet is dedicated to growing single crops. A lot of it isn't even for us, but instead is for feeding livestock.

By eating a plant-based diet, you skip the middleman. The food comes straight from the ground to the plate. Eating seasonal and local can help by reducing carbon footprints, getting fresher tastier, and nutrient rich food. It can also help your local farmers with much needed revenue to put back into their businesses and into the local economy.

Try to keep in mind when using the vegan foods list to shop in season. Try to buy local produce whenever possible. If you have farmers markets in your town or city, this makes it so easy to do both. The money goes straight to the farmers making it more profitable to have markets like these.

 

Vegan Foods List for Veganuary - Diet Zest Article

Getting the most out of your food

When using your vegan food list, it is good to shop and eat with plenty of colors. Include foods that are green, orange, purple, blue, yellow, and red. Eat lots of whole grains, healthy fats, and plant-based protein. Lots of ingredients can be swapped for different ones. It is like a create-your-own adventure of plant-based goodness! 😊 The vegan foods list will help you check all the boxes with flavors and nutrition.

Vegan Grocery List

Fruits

Fruits are always fun to shop for. There are so many different kinds, and it's exciting to try new ones. You can further diversify your fruit shopping by getting different kinds like berries, citrus fruits, and melons.

Vegetables

Like fruits, it is good to try different kinds and colors. You always want to include dark leafy greens. Also be sure to include tomatoes (even if it is a fruit), starchy root vegetables like yams, and potatoes, and other root vegetables like carrots. Frozen vegetables can be a quick and convenient way to include more veggies in your diet.

Protein

Plant-based protein can be best found from tofu, and legumes like lentils, beans, and chickpeas. However, the vegan diet is great because protein can be found in many other things in the vegan foods list like nuts and seeds, greens vegetables like peas, and grains like quinoa, and oats.

Whole Grains

These are good staples to include in your vegan food list. Grains help to include fiber, protein, and complex carbs. This supports heart health and keeps you feeling full throughout the day! Some good grains to include are brown rice, quinoa, oats and farro.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are a good source of healthy fats, and protein. Some good things to include on your vegan foods list are almonds, (and almond butter of course), walnuts, brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, and flax seeds.

Healthy Fats

When eating a plant-based diet it is easy to get too much refined vegetable oils like canola oil, palm oil, and vegan margarine. Instead, try to get fats from avocados, sesame oil, extra virgin olive oil, and from the olives themselves of course. You can also include nuts and seeds as a source of fats.

Herbs and Spices

Do not overlook herbs and spices, as these will bring great flavor to your cooking. Fresh herbs are always great to include whenever possible, but the dried varieties are okay too. Some good options to blast flavor into your food are garlic, rosemary, dill, cilantro, and oregano. If you like Indian cuisine, keep a steady supply of turmeric, paprika, cumin and garam masala (or some other curry spice mix). If you are not sure which spices are best, it's always a good idea to read recipes. This will help you to get an idea of which spices go with which foods. Additionally, try to look up recipes for your favorite foods to learn what spices are in them.

You can check out our recipe ideas and our Personalised Grocery List service.

Also, consider joining our community, our “Healing through food” movement is growing daily!

Difference Between Vegan and Plant-Based

29th December 2020By DZ TeamGoing Vegan

Difference Between Vegan and Plant-Based

Vegan Vs Plant-Based: So What's The Difference?

Many people ask, what is the difference between vegan and plant-based? Isn’t a vegan diet a plant-based diet? Yes, it is but that doesn’t make them the same.

A vegan diet is different from a plant-based diet, though they are similar. They differ on the premise of the inclusion by choice of animal-based products.
A plant-based diet tends to include foods like fruits, sprouts, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. Still confused about the difference between vegan and plant-based? No worries, I will explain further! 🙂

 

Difference Between Vegan and Plant-Based - healthy vegan diet

A Healthy Vegan Diet

In this section, I’m going to breakdown the basics of a healthy vegan diet. Firstly, it comprises strictly of healthy plant-based foods. All animal products (dairy, meat, poultry, fish, honey, and eggs) are excluded from the diet. That said, some vegans may still consume foods like biscuits, chips, cookies and other junk related foods. It may also consist of processed foods including tofu, burgers, and ice-cream. Though snacks can be consumed a whole based diet is recommended. This will encourage a healthy vegan diet which is high in nutrients. Foods which are often consumed include:

Legumes: beans, split peas, nuts, seeds, soy products (tempeh or tofu). Legumes are known to be packed with fiber, protein, antioxidants, b-vitamins, and essential fatty acids.
Whole grains: wheat berries, millet, oats, brown rice, and quinoa. Whole grains provide a rich source of minerals, protein, fiber, b-vitamins, and antioxidants.
Fruits: Citrus and Berries. They are rich in vitamin C and a great source of antioxidants.

 

What Else Should a Healthy Vegan Diet Include?

Vitamin B12, vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and iodine. The are important nutrients.
Vitamin B12: Crucial for the formulation of red blood cells, neurological functioning, and the system of DNA. B-12 sources are best received through methyl cobalamin and supplements. B-12 in the form of cobalamin is found in fortified foods such as nutritional yeast, cereal, and non-dairy milk.
Vitamin D: natural sunlight and vitamin D supplements.
Omega-3 fatty acids: (flaxseed, flaxseed oil, walnuts, hemp seed oil, tofu, canola oil and dark leafy greens). Omega 3 fatty acids create the adequate balance necessary for optimal brain and heart health. Omega 3 fatty acids are crucial for infant/child development. Alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is omega-3 fatty acid in its original form. This is recognized within the body as DHA and EPA when converted.
Iodine: (navy beans, baked sweet potato with skin, enriched white bread, prunes, apple juice, strawberries and watercress)
Calcium: (almond milk, soy milk, almonds and soya beans)
Iron: (amaranth, navy beans and blackstrap molasses
Protein: (oats, tofu, tempeh, legumes and quinoa)

 

The Vegan Society - Definition of Veganism

The Vegan Society provides a great definition of veganism. They say,

"Veganism is a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude—as far as is possible and practicable—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of animals, humans and the environment."

Their definition also contains a specific clause:

“In dietary terms, it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.”

As we explained previously, this means that people who follow a healthy vegan diet will not consume meat, fish, eggs, or dairy products. Additionally, strict vegans avoid all animal-based products, i.e., honey and any foods or non-food products that are derived from animals.

 

Difference Between Vegan and Plant-Based - healthy plant-based diet

A Healthy Plant-Based Diet

A healthy plant-based diet is similar to a healthy vegan diet. In what way? Well, in the sense that it is about avoiding animal-based food products. That said, a person who is plant-based might avoid eating animal products. However, they might still decide to purchase a fur coat!

There are specific foods that some vegans might eat, which would not form part of a healthy plant-based diet. A perfect example is ‘vegan junk food’. This may consist of things like tofu based hot dogs and deep-fried seitan etc. These types of products are not great for your health and they obviously lack nutrition! Obviously, this does not fit in with the ethos of being plant-based.

What is Plant-Based?

Essentially, the focus is heavily placed on eating foods that are rich in plant sources. A healthy plant-based diet primarily includes whole foods. Whole foods are foods that experience little to no processing. Plant-based whole foods include vegetables fruits; whole grains (quinoa, barley, oatmeal); oils (avocado, olive, canola), and nuts and seeds. Additionally, refined foods such as white flour, white sugar, and processed oils are excluded or greatly reduced. Examples of recommended foods are listed below

Fruits: peaches, pineapple, bananas, berries, citrus fruits and pears
Vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, kale, spinach, tomatoes and bell peppers
Starchy vegetables: butternut squash, potatoes and sweet potatoes
Whole grains: Brown rice, brown rice pasta, rolled oats, quinoa and barley
Unsaturated fats: Avocado oil, olive oil and coconut oil
Legumes: Lentils, peanuts, black beans, peas and chickpeas
Nuts and Seeds: Almonds, cashews, macadamia nuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, homemade peanut butter and tahini
Plant-based milk (no sugar added): Coconut milk, almond milk and cashew milk
Spices & Seasonings: curry, black pepper, salt, basil, rosemary and turmeric
Condiments: soy sauce, vinegar, lemon juice, salsa, mustard and nutritional yeast
Plant-based protein sources: Tofu, tempeh, protein powders, no added sugar, or artificial ingredients
Beverages: herbal tea and water

 

Summing Up - "Healing Through Food”

To conclude, I will sum up the difference between vegan and plant-based in the following way:

- Veganism is a lifestyle which seeks to exclude all forms of cruelty, where possible.
- Plant-based is a diet which is about avoiding the consumption of animal products and anything refined, and food products which are not beneficial for health.

It's clear that people who follow a healthy vegan diet and a healthy plant-based diet have lower blood pressure and a lower body fat percentage.
So, now you are aware of the primary difference between vegan and plant-based nutrition, what is your next step?
Need help? No worries, check out our Personalised Grocery List service.

Whether you decide to go vegan or plant-based –you should join our community and be part of our “Healing through food” movement!

Go Vegan For The Environment

15th December 2020By DZ TeamEnvironment

Go Vegan For The Environment

Vegan Environment Facts

Are you considering going vegan for the environment? Well, there are various reasons why more and more people choose to go vegan every day. An increasingly popular one is to go vegan for the environment. As more research discovers what the exact impact of animal agriculture is on the environment, and more vegan environment facts come to light, we are finding out that going vegan is one of the best things we can do for our planet.
In this article, we will share some of the most important vegan environment facts, which explain why it’s so beneficial to go vegan for the environment.

 

Vegan For The Environment - Diet Zest Vegan environment facts

The production cycle of our food

In animal agriculture, food grown on farms isn’t consumed directly – instead, it’s fed to livestock. This requires a lot of livestock feed and the animal product which ends up being made feeds much fewer people than the plants would in the first place. Over 700 million tons of food, which could be consumed by humans, is fed to livestock every year. If we all stopped eating animals, we could even solve the world’s food crisis!
This means many more resources are needed to produce animal products, in comparison to plant-based alternatives. Ultimately, the production cycle of animal agriculture is unsustainable by design. Even organic farms cannot avoid this characteristic, making going vegan for the environment the most sustainable solution.

Adding to our carbon footprint

Climate change is one of the most pressing environmental issues we’re facing today – and the vegan environment facts regarding our carbon footprint are truly shocking. Research has found that animal agriculture produces more greenhouse gasses than all of the world’s transportation combined. There are many reasons why this is the case.

Firstly, livestock, particularly cows and sheep, produce methane while they digest – a greenhouse gas 84 times more potent in the short run than CO2. However, the good news about methane is that if we reduce our consumption, we’re likely to see the results in our environment much sooner than when reducing our CO2 consumption!

Secondly, slaughterhouses and farms take a lot of energy to power, energy which often comes from fossil fuels. By choosing plant-based options, or deciding to go vegan for the environment, you are not just reducing your energy consumption – but also the carbon emissions associated with it.

Lastly, to grow livestock feed, forests are often cut down, particularly in the Amazon. As the number of trees which could compensate for our release of greenhouse gasses decreases, so do the effects of climate change. However, climate change is not the only issue deforestation causes – it also leads to widespread species extinction and soil degradation in the area.

Effects on our oceans

When speaking of vegan environment facts, we often focus on farming of livestock, rather than fishing. However, industrial fishing is one of the most environmentally damaging activities related to the sourcing of animal products – and an incredibly good reason to go vegan for the environment.

Firstly, the demand for fish and seafood is severely endangering marine species targeted by the fishermen. The fish simply cannot multiply fast enough to keep the population size stable, because so many are being caught. Some data even suggest the oceans could be fishless by 2048 if we don’t take action. Although some steps are being taken to address this issue, we need much more widespread bans on fishing in these endangered areas – until that happens, the best thing to do for the environment and our ocean is to go vegan.

As if it wasn’t enough that these targeted species are being endangered, so are other sea animals. This is happening because the fishing nets used by industrial fishing are exceptionally large and catch anything that comes in their way – this includes not just the target fish but also other animals, including dolphins, sharks, turtles and many endangered species. This phenomenon is referred to as bycatch and costs billions of animals their lives annually. Why do the animals die? They often get severely injured in the process and are thrown overboard, dead or dying

 

Vegan For The Environment & Vegan Environment Facts - Diet Zest

Wasting and polluting our water

It takes a lot of water to produce animal products – we need 100 to 200 more water to produce a pound of beef compared to a plant-based alternative. Besides water for the livestock to drink, a lot of water is also used to clean and maintain the facilities they are kept in.

Animal agriculture is also a big polluter of water, as faecal matter often leaks into rivers and contaminating them. Animal waste runoff is much more common than you may think and one of its most environmentally destructive consequences is the collapse of freshwater supply to the affected areas, leading to people being left without access to safe drinking water.

All the food that’s wasted

Food waste is another environmental issue we are facing in the 21st century. According to the USDA, 30% to 40% of our food supply goes to waste! While all food waste is highly problematic, it seems to be even more so with animal products.
Firstly, as we mentioned above, it takes more resources to produce animal products than it costs to produce plant-based foods. This means that if the food gets thrown away, more resources will have been wasted.
Secondly, animal products such as meat or dairy have a particularly short shelf life, especially when compared to vegan alternatives. This gives us less time to consume them and makes them more likely to be thrown away. While this does not apply to all animal products, it’s an important factor to keep in mind.

Summing up vegan for the environment

Decided to go vegan for the environment? That’s a wonderful thing! We wish you a lot of joy, sustainability, and animal compassion on your journey.

Remember these vegan environment facts – write them down or save this article. They will help keep you going if, at any point, you encounter challenges on your journey towards veganism.

If you need help to take your next step into veganism, why not check out our Personalised Grocery List service.

Consider joining our community, our “Healing through food” movement is growing everyday!