Welcome Green Monsters! We're your online guide to making conscious choices that help people, animals and the planet.
Download food monster: the biggest, baddest, yummiest vegan food app!
Buy the #EatForThePlanet book


Food Monster - Features

Simple Rules to Eat Plant-Based Without Thinking About Calories or Nutrient Ratios


For many, now that the new year has begun, so does the start of diets, weight loss programs, and exercise routines. Making a change can be hard, since waking up an hour earlier to go to the gym and chug a green smoothie can, at first, seem like climbing a mountain.

If you’ve made a New Year’s Resolution to achieve a healthier version of yourself, then congrats! You’ve made the first step. The next step should be to eliminate meat and dairy, and to eat more vegetables. Though keeping track of your calorie intake is important, don’t get too caught up in counting. You risk loosing sight of the larger picture. Some low-calorie foods and food products marketed as helpers of weight-loss aren’t made with healthy ingredients. Here are five rules to eat plant-based without thinking about calories or nutrient ratios.

1. Don’t overdo it on healthy fats

Nuts and seeds like flaxseeds, walnuts, and canola oil are good vegan sources of the omega-3 ALA. But too much of these good things can mean bad weight gain. These are plant-based foods you don’t want to overdo on consuming. Don’t eat too much or you could gain weight. If you find yourself killing multiple handfuls, take a break. A couple of tablespoons is usually enough to add a healthy amount of fat to your meal.

2. Always go for raw fruits and vegetables

Do you find yourself comparing the two nutrition bar packages for which one has the most vitamin A, C, fiber, etc? Remember that eating the raw version of foods is the best way to get the most nutrients from the food. Raw is the simplest, purest form of the food, so eat an apple over applesauce. Eat raw broccoli on a salad instead of boiled broccoli with butter.

3. Look for “unsweetened”

People who embrace a new vegetarian or vegan diet for weight loss reasons may be fooled into eating packaged foods labeled “vegan.” If you are having trouble losing weight, consuming too many sweetened products could be one of the culprits. Even foods that are considered healthy like almond milk can have sugar in it. Instead of buying the vanilla or regular dairy-free milk, vow to always buy the version labeled “unsweetened.” Follow this rule when grocery shopping instead of comparing sugar contents on flavored drinks.

4. Include carbohydrates, protein, and a healthy fat in each meal

Though it’s best to figure out the nutrient ratio of your food, a rule to eat plant-based without worrying about those numbers is to remember: pair fat, protein and carbohydrates. Balance is the key. Make a list of healthy fats, like olive oil, then add proteins like lentils and carbohydrates like fruit or sprouted grains. Then, make meals by combining one from each list together. Once you remember what’s a fat and what’s a protein, then when in your kitchen trying to figure out a balanced meal, you can quickly grab three items without thinking about it too much.

5. Never eat packaged bread

Some of the ingredients in store-bought loaves of bread with a relatively long shelf life are just downright awful for your health. Potassium bromate, high fructose corn syrup, and refined grains are just a few of the unhealthy and harmful ingredients that are hiding in packaged bread. Don’t get caught up in comparing calorie amounts per slice or studying all the packaging statements like “heart-healthy, good for weight loss, etc.” Instead, remember the rule to not eat those products. Instead, make your own healthy bread, or go to a health food store and purchase organic sprouted grain bread. Most stores keep it in the freezer, since there are no preservatives to make it last like other breads. Personally, I love the Ezekial 4:9 brand by Food for Life.

Want to read more posts like this? Sign up for our newsletter below!​

Browse through some recent posts below:

10 Délicieux French Dishes Done Vegan!

Vegan Almond Croissant with sugar and almond topping

5 Healthy ‘Shots’ To Alkalize Your Body in the Morning

Canadians Get Almost Half of Their Calories From Ultra-Processed Foods

Your Favorite Philly Recipes Made Vegan!

Disclosure: One Green Planet accepts advertising, sponsorship, affiliate links and other forms of compensation, which may or may not influence the advertising content, topics or articles written on this site. Click here for more information.

7 comments on “Simple Rules to Eat Plant-Based Without Thinking About Calories or Nutrient Ratios”

Click to add comment
1 Years Ago

I’ve lost 5 kilos in my first week. I followed the diet with some protein as suggested. It is really like magic! It works. I’m not perfectly following the listed diet plan mostly), but the weight looses even on very little exercise. Give a try on this, <a href=https://goo.gl/IY88ng>this diet plan clearly works.</a>

Darlene Steinis
4 Years Ago

Don't forget to include vitamin B12 daily or weekly depending on the dose.

Cindy Nett
4 Years Ago


Susan Beterbide
4 Years Ago

Actually, studies show that some veggies are more nutritious when cooked.

Kathy Derrick
4 Years Ago


Solanum Tuberosum
4 Years Ago

I must admit, I first read : Eat Giant Dong.

One Green Planet
07 Jan 2014

oh well...

4 Years Ago

One of the few articles on healthy plant-based eating that are in line with optimum nutrition.


Subscribe to our Newsletter

Follow us on

Do Not Show This Again


Submit to OneGreenPlanet

Terms & Conditions ×