Adapting to the New Canadian Food Guide with Easy Whole Food Options

There’s a reason why parents harp on their children to eat their vegetables – and it’s not to torture them. In 2019, Canada has decided to side with parents in the new Canadian food guide. The new guide boasts about the importance of a plant-based diet. It advises Canadians to move away from depending on animal products like high-fat dairy and meat for their protein intake. There are many easy plant-based whole food options to consider.

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Food Guide Progression

1997 Canadian Food guide
The Canadian Food Guide from 1977.

Many Canadians were raised with a different idea about what it means to eat healthy. The old Canadian food guide recommended that half of a Canadian’s diet be dairy, meat, and eggs. The other half being vegetables and grains. The New Canadian food guide recommends that a Canadian’s diet should be half vegetables, a quarter grains, and a quarter protein with a focus on plant-based protein. It is common for Canadians raised by the old guide to question whether it is possible for a human to be healthy without animal products. The human body produces 11 amino acids (proteins) but needs to source nine more from foods. It’s true that many animal products are a good source of the remaining nine amino acids that a human body needs; however, these amino acids can be found by eating a balanced diet of plant-based whole-foods.

Easy Plant-based Whole-food Options

The new Canadian Food Guide 2019.

It’s easy to find plant-based whole-food options with amino acids. Kale, for example, has two grams of protein per cup. Spinach is one of the most nutrient-dense greens out there, and microgreens are known to have 40 times the nutrient density than their fully-grown counterparts. Beans, pulses, nuts, and fungus’ are all great choices and don’t forget about water lentils. Who here has heard about water lentils?

Fish are Ideal Animal Proteins

The new guide recommends eating fatty fish over beef, pork, or chicken as a source of healthy fats and proteins. Aquaponics facilities grow edible fish and plants together, creating a sustainable ecosystem.

Organic, Black Nile Tilapia
Our Tilapia.

Many Canadians have been living a healthy life following the recommendations of the old food guide, so why should they switch it up?

Things Change

Things change. Like everything else in life, the needs of our nation, our environment, and our planet have changed. As a nation, we are nowhere near the same as we were when the first food guide came out in 1942. The difference in the daily life of a Canadian from World War II to now alone warrants a change in diet.  Due to climate change, our environment is changing rapidly, and adapting our diets could help future generations. In the past 80 years, the planet has become a global community. Globalization has had positive and negative effects. A Canadian having access to pineapple from Hawaii, kiwi from New Zealand, and beef from Argentina in the middle of winter is a pretty new thing. The resulting carbon footprint that having access to these luxuries can cause may not exactly be sustainable.

So, how can Canadians meet the recommendations of the new Canadian food guide? Eat plant-based whole-foods, and think local! Many Canadians live in areas where local and urban farms bring their goods to farmer’s markets. There are farm stands scattered across Greater Victoria and Vancouver Island that provide fresh eggs and produce.

The Aquaponic Solution

Aquaponic systems can be set up to produce more food in less space, and are great for producing food close to communities. They use 95 percent less water than conventional methods, are almost always organic, and provide two food outputs. Healthy fish, greens, microgreens, and even water lentil protein powder are great food items that can come out of an aquaponic system.

Aquaponic systems are scalable to the needs of the grower and can be the size of a fish tank, or the size of a stadium.

Contact us or book a free consultation if you are interested in joining the aquaponic movement.

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