Although my blog is completely focused on whole food plant based eating, it came to my attention that I haven’t defined what that means. When I say it came to my attention, I mean my dad read the acronym ‘WFBP’ in one of my posts and messaged me about it. He said he didn’t know what it meant and wasn’t in the cool club. Sorry, Dad! I realized I may be leaving other people out, too.
There’s a big increase in people reducing or eliminating their consumption of animal products. This is awesome, but there are many terms used to describe a person’s approach to this way of eating. Plant-Based, Whole-Food Plant-Based (WFPB), Raw, Vegan. It’s good to understand these terms and decide where you stand and find meals and recipes to suit you. I’ll focus on whole food plant based here, but touch on the other terms as well.
What does Whole Food Plant Based Mean?
WFBP, also known as just ‘plant-based’, is pretty simple when you break it down. It means eating foods that:
- are in their whole form, and minimally processed. Meaning, they haven’t’ been broken down chemically and/ or mechanically. Think potatoes, not potato chips. Olives, not olive oil. Homemade lentil balls, not processed or fake meats and cheeses.
- come from plants, not from animals or animal by-products such as meat or dairy. Food that does not contain chemicals and additives that are not from plants. Think Vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds, legumes.
Put this together, and you have foods that do not contain animal products, and are in the most natural form of the ingredient. Some people believe eating foods in their fully raw, completely unprocessed and uncooked form is truly whole food plant based. This is called Raw Eating. Others are okay with cooking and a little bit of processing, as long as the ingredients have fewer than 3-4 ingredients and no harmful additives or chemicals.
Myself and the Veggie Campus blog fall into the second category of WFPB. I do my best to advocate for whole foods plant based eating that is a combination of raw, cooked and minimally processed foods.
Examples of WFPB Meals:
- No oil used for cooking or as an ingredient
- No animal products
- Made of whole fruits, veggies, grains and legumes
- May have minimally processed breads and pasta
- Smoothie: homemade with almond milk, frozen banana, frozen berries, spinach, peanut butter, flaxseed
- Overnight Oats: oats soaked in almond milk, cinnamon and agave overnight in a jar. Add berries, nut butter, chia seeds or other toppings before eating the next day
- Veggie Bowl: steamed kale, brown rice, tofu, cauliflower, chickpeas, avocado, potatoes, cashew based ‘ranch’ dressing
- Sandwich: Minimally processed whole grain bread with cashew cheese spread, avocado, tempeh or tempeh, tomato and lettuce
- Curry: homemade veggie and tofu curry with brown, not white, rice
- Falafal Veggie Pasta: homemade falafel balls over zucchini noodles, additional veggies, homemade tomato sauce
- Handful of almonds
- Apple with peanut butter
- Veggies with homemade hummus
Whole Food Plant Based vs Vegan
Whole Food Plant Based
- People who eat whole food plant-based often have health at the first reason and basis for their food choices. There are a ton of resources on the healthy benefits of eating plan-based.
- They may or may not also live a vegan lifestyle (see below), and may or may not care about impacts to the environment. At Veggie Campus, I am to live a vegan lifestyle, along with my plant-based food choices.
- Being Vegan truly is a lifestyle. It is about a compassionate way of living and treating other species. Living a vegan lifestyle is means you avoid consuming products made from animals, be it eating them, wearing them, drinking them, etc.
- You can live a vegan lifestyle, but not necessarily eat whole food plant-based. Someone who is vegan may not care as much about their health. However, some people who live a vegan lifestyle, do eat whole and plant based foods.
- The biggest thing to understand is that being vegan is larger than just food choices.
Let me know if you have any questions I can help with to make this clearer! Do a search for whole foods plant based, plant based or WFPB and you should find a wealth of resources available.