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How to Eat 30 Plants in a Week
It’s great that you’ve decided to try and eat 30 plants – AKA fruits, veggies, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds – a week! Go you!! But if you’ve landed on this page, I bet you’ve been asking yourself how exactly to go about this.
Well, look no further – here’s my guide to help you easily get all 30 (or more) plants into your diet on a weekly basis:
Eat More Plants for Breakfast
- Buy (or make) muesli with added nuts, seeds and dried fruits – most products have more than one kind of whole grain in them, just try to pick one without any added syrups or sugars. Don’t forget to top it with some fresh fruit!
- Try out different breads for toast – sprouted whole multigrain and rye varieties are fab.
- Add some seeds and chopped nuts to your cereal or yoghurt bowl (along with fresh fruit, of course). Seeds make a great avocado toast topping too.
- Don’t forget legumes! Beans on toast is a super satisfying (and quick!) breakfast option. Pair it with some sautéed mushrooms, onions and spinach if you have a little more time. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, try your hand at making Ful Medames – it’s delicious topped with some za’atar, fresh parsley and chopped tomato.
- Add some chopped veggies to your tofu or egg scramble (frozen is a great option here!).
- Make a smoothie a proper meal – add oats, nut butter and flax seeds to your smoothies, and throw in a couple of handfuls of leafy green veggies for an extra plant point too.
Add More Plants to Your Main Meals
- Have a soup or salad as a starter.
- Add beans and lentils to your soups, stews and curries (you can even blend them in, if you don’t like the texture of legumes).
- Sprinkle seeds over salads for some crunch.
- Get creative with grain bowls – you can pack so much in!
- Have a stir fry every week – this is a great opportunities to add LOTS of veggies to one meal.
- Switch up your whole grains – try different varieties of rice, as well as quinoa, couscous, barley, spelt, freekeh and wheat berries. Many supermarkets do microwavable pouches of ready to eat grains which are great for saving time, and also letting you try something new without the risk of being stuck with a big pack of something that you don’t really like.
- Make half your plate veggies.
- Eat a piece of fruit for dessert.
Make Plants your Go-To Snacks
- Chop up some veggies, like carrots, peppers, celery and cucumber and enjoy them dipped in guacamole, hummus or salsa when you get the munchies.
- Bake with different flours – rye and spelt are great whole grain options.
- Eat fruit to manage sweet cravings, but pair it with some healthy fat (like nut butter) to make it more satisfying.
- Make your own trail mix out of nuts, seeds, dried fruit and dark chocolate – yum!
Throw some frozen fruit and veggies into your shopping trolley! Frozen produce is picked when it’s ripe and can contain more nutrients than the fresh equivalent. You’ll cut down on food waste, and frozen fruits and veggies are great for saving time and money too!
Proper planning is the foundation of many healthy habits, and eating a nutritious diet is no exception. By planning your meals, you’ll easily be able to smash the challenge!
Local produce is often tastier, more accessible, cheaper and kinder to the planet, so see what’s in season where you live – maybe even head to the farmer’s market, if you have one locally.
Try Something New
Why not order a fruit and veg box? This can be a great way to try something new and get creative with ingredients you may not have used before. You might just find something you love!
Eat The Rainbow
By aiming to ‘eat the rainbow’ you’ll be well on your way to 30 plants. Adding different coloured plants to your meals means greater variety, and that equals bigger diversity in your gut flora.
Stock Your Pantry
Fill your cupboards with shelf-stable dried goods like whole grains and canned or dried beans and lentils. They always make for a quick, convenient and tasty meal.
Don’t Forget Toppings
Nuts, seeds, herbs and spices are great for adding flavour, but they also count towards your plant points. Herbs like coriander and parsley can really freshen up a savory dish and spices like ginger and cinnamon add some warmth to oats and smoothies. So go ahead and sprinkle some on your salads, soups and breakfasts (or anything!).
Add One More
Take a look at every meal and ask yourself this: ‘can I add just one more plant food to my plate?’. There’s almost always room for more!
This is my favourite one – experiment with new flavours. Look to international cuisine for inspiration and adapt your favourite tried-and-tested dishes by swapping ingredients if you don’t have the inclination to try totally new recipes (although I highly recommend trying something completely new once in a while – variety is the spice of life, after all!).
Are you up for the challenge?
Download my free 30 plants challenge workbook and track your weekly plant intake! Inside your workbook, you’ll find:
- A printable checklist where you can record all the plants you’ve eaten.
- Practical tips on how to maximise the number of plants in your diet.
- And, shopping list suggestions if you need a bit of inspiration.
Go on – give you gut microbes the nourishment they need!
The benefits of eating more plants are undeniable and by committing to eat 30 plants a week, you will be taking a big step towards optimizing your health.