Everyone is talking about the benefits of eating plenty of greens, fresh fruits and superfoods while consuming less meat. From social media influencers to celebrities to nutritionists and food scientists, people opt for plant-forward diets to detoxify their bodies, reduce their environmental footprint and prevent certain health diseases.
Plant-based diets include plenty of vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, fruits and superfoods with little or no processing. The list of mouth-watering plant-based recipes is endless, yet eliminating meat, dairy and other animal-derived products all at once is not an easy task.
To make healthy cooking and eating easy, fun and quick, start with a 7-day challenge!
Try swapping animal protein for plant-based proteins. So, instead of filling your lunch meal or dinner with chicken, red meat or pork, get the protein you need from one of the below green sources:
- Quinoa, farro, amaranth
- Tofu, soy
- Lentils and beans – the Mediterranean diet at its best!
- Chia seeds
Add some of these rich in protein ingredients to each snack and meal you’ll have on day one.
Search for local seasonal produce in Cyprus grocery stores. Watermelons are so flavourful and juicy in the summer, while grapes, figs and romaine lettuce taste exquisitely in autumn.
So, fill your fridge with the freshest veggies and fruits produced by local farmers and use them to make the most creative culinary combinations.
It’s the seed day! Seeds are not only for the garden. They are superfoods that can help you maintain a strong body and mind. They offer us essential nutrients, like healthy fats, iron, calcium and magnesium.
Fill your smoothies, salads and main dishes with chia seeds, sunflower, hemp seeds, pumpkin or sesame seeds.
Spread them on toast, yogurt, or mix them with nuts and dried fruits to get a snack that will boost your energy and metabolism.
Include healthy fats in the 4th-day menu. Go for avocados, coconut oil, milk, shreds and flakes, plant oils like virgin olive oil, cacao powder, nuts and seeds.
Plant-based fats help reduce the risk of chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart diseases.
Do you know how many animal-based dairy alternatives exist out there? Supermarkets have allocated whole shelves and aisles to dairy-free products that have taken the world by storm in recent years.
Dairy-free food options are not only for lactose-intolerant people and vegans. They offer significant benefits to all health-conscious consumers, such as better digestion and glowing skin.
- Milk alternatives – Coconut milk, almond milk, rice milk and soya milk are all delicious cow’s milk alternatives. Instead of heavy cream, try adding coconut cream to your cooking.
- Butter alternatives – Olive oil is ideal for caramelizing or sautéing foods. For sweet recipes, like pancakes, a ripe banana would make your food taste better than ever. Many people use avocado and coconut oil with a bit of salt for baked goods too.
- Cheese & yogurt alternatives – Tofu and soft cream “cheese” made of soya, cashew or coconut milk can be easily found in many grocery stores. Check the supermarket’s dairy free shelves for lactose-free yogurts produced by popular yogurt brands.
- Ice-cream alternatives – Opt for dairy-free, fruit-based sorbets and ice-cream made of almond, cashews, coconut and other nut-based milk. Or visit the Elysian Plant-Based Kitchen Bar in Nicosia, Diagorou 15, to taste the most delicious plant-based ice-cream in Cyprus!
Today you’ll discover the fascinating world of plant-based beverages and sweeteners.
Instead of carbonated drinks and caffè latte, dedicate this day to plenty of water, green tea and black coffee.
In addition, try to satisfy your sweet tooth with a cake made of vegan chocolate, gluten-free flour, coconut sugar and agave nectar instead of honey.
On the last day of your plant-based food challenge, embark on an authentic plant-based culinary journey out of your kitchen. If you’re in or around Nicosia, check out the Elysian Plant-based Kitchen Bar – the first 100% plant-based restaurant in the heart of Cyprus’ capital.
At Elysian, you’ll find the most delicious and healthy signature burgers, wraps with gyro, smoothie bowls, pancakes, ice-cream and refreshing salads.
All dishes and sweet delights are made with the finest plant-based ingredients to serve our customers fresh, healthy, nutritious and mouth-watering food that will revitalize and recharge their system.
Ask our staff for more details on plant-based food or healthy recipes!