Today on the podcast:

TJ Waterfall is a plant-based human biologist (BSc) and nutritionist (MSc). He specialises in vegan and vegetarian nutrition and helping clients reach their potential by optimising their nutrition. 

He is the author of the new book The Plant Based Power Plan – Increase Strength, Boost Energy, Perform at Your Best.

In his new book, TJ uses cutting edge research that he applies with his clients ranging from premiership rugby players, competitive weightlifters and professional boxers to premier league footballers and ultra-distance triathletes.

Listen in as TJ discusses how vegan diets are NOT the same as plant-based diets when it comes to overall health, the major unhealthy foods to watch out for (especially the ones you may not have thought of), the scientific vs anecdotal evidence of plant-based diets and their benefits, key nutrients to include in any diet, how to start a new diet plan, the gradual vs all-in approach, and how to start including more plants in your diet.

Episode Outline

  • 03:46 TJ’s background and how he got into the world of nutrition
  • 07:26 Who did TJ write his book The Plant-Based Power Plan for?
  • 09:30 Why it’s actually easy to meet your daily protein requirements while on a plant-based diet
  • 15:08 Notes on amino acids and plant-based diets
  • 16:58 The myths and misconceptions around vegans being more prone to nutritional differences
  • 21:26 Vegan diets versus plant-based vegan diets
  • 24:42 Constructing a healthy plant-based diet
  • 26:34 The health benefits of a plant-based vegan diet
  • 33:48 Where meat, cheese, and eggs fit in
  • 38:03 How to switch to a plant-based diet
  • 40:27 The biggest thing that stops people from switching to a plant-based diet
  • 43:19 The one message TJ would like to send to everyone around the world regarding plant-based diets

Key Points

  • Switching to a plant-based diet does not make it difficult to get your protein. In fact, the opposite is true. A lot of TJ’s own clients are able to take in more than enough protein per day without their conscious effort. The recommended daily intake of protein for 97.5% of the population is 0.75 grams per kilogram of bodyweight, and studies have shown that, on average, men and women in America already get more than what’s recommended. From eating peas and lentils, to nuts and plant-based protein powders, protein intake should never be a problem.
  • A vegan diet is not the same as a plant-based diet. You can be a vegan and fail to take in the nutrients you need to stay healthy and perform day-by-day. Eating certain processed foods every day, for example, can still be regarded as being part of a vegan diet. The general rule of thumb is to eat diverse, home-cooked meals. Eat a nutrient-dense diet of abundance.
  • The steps to switching to a plant-based diet depend entirely on the individual. Some can easily go cold turkey and make the switch overnight, while others need to gradually switch out parts of their diet for their plant-based alternatives. Another tip to consider is, the more unhealthy your diet already is, the slower you have to take the transition. The first thing TJ suggests you do is add more fiber to your diet before starting to introduce more greens and plant-based recipes.

Powerful Quotes by TJ

  • Anyone following a plant-based diet doesn’t really need to worry about the amino acid profile of their foods. As long as you’re having a varied, balanced diet, you’re getting all the essential amino acids.
  • Being on a vegan diet doesn’t mean that you’re going to be healthy.
  • Not all plant-based diets are equal.
  • A plant-based vegan diet can add life to your years as well as years to your life.

TJ Waterfall

Plant-based human biologist (BSc) and nutritionist (MSc).

I’m a plant-based human biologist (BSc) and nutritionist (MSc). I specialise in vegan and vegetarian nutrition and helping clients reach their potential by optimising their nutrition.

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