How to Get 30 Different Plants a Week (15 Practical Tips)

30 different plants a week

Are you looking for a simple and effective way to improve your gut health and overall wellbeing? It turns out that one simple dietary change could make a big difference: eating 30 different plants a week.

What’s the gut microbiome, you ask? It’s a collection of tiny organisms, such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi, that live in our digestive tracts, and increasing its diversity has been linked to benefits such as improved digestion, immune function, and mental health.

Luckily, increasing your plant intake can be simple and delicious. So if you’re ready to take your health to the next level, read on for some tips on how to easily incorporate 30 different plants into your weekly meals.

Getting Started on 30 Different Plants a Week

1 | Plan. Plan. Plan.

To get more plants into your diet, planning ahead is key.

Start off by planning what meals you want to have over the next week and then think about how you can incorporate more plants into them.

You can also try a new plant-based meal every week to keep things interesting. This can help you discover new plant-based foods and recipes that you may not have otherwise tried.

I have a variety of delicious plant-packed recipes you can add to your weekly meal plan – so why not give them a go?

2 | Shift Your Mindset From Restriction to Abundance

What I love about the goal of eating 30 different plants a week is that it encourages us to think about what we can ADD to our diet rather can exclude.

There are a lot of tips online around plant-based eating that talk about how you can remove X, Y and Z from your diet, but the whole reason I created More Plants Nutrition was to help people eat MORE plants – regardless of whether you are vegan, veggie or a part-time plant eater.

I really think that to be successful in eating more plants (and hitting that magic 30), you need to switch your mindset from ‘I need to eat only plant-based and remove foods I enjoy’ to ‘Now I can focus on adding more plants to the meals I already love’.

This subtle switch from a restrictive mindset to one of abundance and opportunity will make the goal of eating 30 plant-based foods a week a whole lot easier and enjoyable.

3 | Start Slow and Build Up to 30 Different Plants a Week

Small manageable changes will have a more meaningful impact in the long term than big changes made all at once that you’ll struggle to stick to.

You could try adding 1 extra portion of plants every day or aim to try a new plant-rich recipe every week. Find the small steps that work for you, and in time, you’ll reach your goal of eating 30 plants a week.

4 | Make Sure to Stay Hydrated

Before we get into the practical tips for eating more plants, it’s important to highlight that when you increase your plant intake, it’s vital that you stay hydrated to ensure smooth digestion.

Water is crucial when it comes to moving fibre through your digestive system, as it helps prevent constipation.

So as a diet high in plants is also high in fibre, you need to make sure that you increase your water intake to help your body adjust to the changes.

I recommend aiming for at least 8 glasses of water a day for healthy digestion, to keep your gut feeling good!

Practical Ways to Achieve 30 Different Plants a Week

5 | Sprinkle Them On

Sprinkle nuts, seeds, berries or greens over your meals for extra flavour and nutrients.

Here are some tasty ideas:

  • Top pasta dishes with some fresh rocket or basil
  • Add a tablespoon of flaxseeds or toasted nuts to porridge
  • Swap soup croutons for roasted chickpeas
  • Add a mixture of berries to a bowl of cereal
  • Top curries with a handful of coriander
  • Sprinkle chia seeds over toast (e.g. avocado toast or nut butter and jam on toast)

6 | Sneak Beans and Lentils In

Add a tin of beans or lentils to your favourite dishes. This works well with curries, stews, chilli and pasta dishes. If a tin is too much, add a handful to start with and slowly increase the amount added each time.

You don’t have to forgo meat completely either – half meat and half beans/lentils is a great starting point (and a cheap way to make your food go further!).

7 | Switch It Up

If you get bored of eating vegetables the same way, switch up how you prepare or cook them.

The more appealing you can make vegetables, the more likely you’ll add them to your meals. Try:

  • Roasting them with herbs and spices
  • Grating them for a different texture
  • Pairing them with condiments or dressings

8 | Blend Plants Into Soups and Sauces

One of the easiest ways to get more plants into your diet is by making plant-rich soups and sauces.

My favourite soups and sauces to make are:

  • Three bean chilli soup
  • Lentil and root vegetable soup
  • Tomato and basil pasta sauce with hidden veg
  • Creamy butternut squash mac and cheese sauce

9 | Plant Snacks

Opting for plant snacks can be a great way to help boost your plant intake. Though I am a big believer in balance, so remember you CAN have that chocolate bar every now and then!

Some of my fav plant snacks include:

  • Veg sticks and dip
  • Sliced fruit and peanut butter
  • Edamame
  • Roasted chickpeas
  • Nuts

10 | Choose Mixed Varieties

When you’re in the supermarket, opt for mixed tins of beans or mixed bags of frozen fruits and vegetables.

If you like microwavable rice and grains, you can often find mixed varieties of these too (like quinoa and bulgur wheat).

This simple swap can double or triple the number of different plants you’re eating in one sitting!

11 | Plant-Rich Smoothies

Nutritionally speaking, eating whole fruit is preferred as it’s better at filling you up. But, adding proteins and fats (such as chia seeds, peanut butter and avocado) to smoothies can make them more balanced and satisfying.

Try blitzing a mix of berries, banana, spinach, oats, flax seeds and yoghurt for a tasty, balanced smoothie.

12 | Swap Meat For Plant-Protein

If you eat meat, going meat-free 1-2 days a week can give you that extra push you need to experiment with new recipes and try new plant-based sources of protein.

Try to base your meals around plant proteins like:

  • Edamamme, tofu and tempeh
  • Nuts (e.g. peanuts and almonds)
  • Beans, chickpeas and lentils

But, if meat alternatives are your thing, try mixing it up with these less processed plant proteins too, as meat alternatives are often high in salt and lower in fibre (compared to these options).

Maintaining 30 Different Plants a Week

13 | Keep Track of Your Plant Intake

To ensure you’re eating 30 different plants a week, keep track of what you’re eating. This can be as simple as creating a checklist or using a food diary to record how many plants you eat throughout the day. Do whatever works best for you!

Keeping track of your plant intake can also help you identify any gaps in your diet. For example, if you notice that you’re not eating many leafy greens, you can make a conscious effort to add more to your meals.

Plus, tracking your plant intake is a great way to celebrate your progress and stay motivated.

14 | Meal Prep and Freeze Leftovers

If cooking a fresh plant-packed meal every night sounds like too much effort, meal prep could be the answer.

But you might still be wondering how you can eat 30 DIFFERENT plants a week if you are eating the same meals for a couple of nights in a row, and this is where your freezer comes in handy!

Batch-cooking meals and freezing any leftovers means that you will have a variety of meals to choose from when you’re busy. This means that you can keep your meals varied throughout the week, so you won’t get stuck eating chilli 3 nights in a row.

15 | Don’t Stress About Getting 30 Different Plants a Week EVERY Week

Aiming to eat 30 plants a week is a great goal, but sometimes life gets in the way and that’s OK!

If you have a holiday coming up or your life is too hectic to cook from scratch, remember that we’re only human and not every week will be a success.

I’m a big believer in the 80/20 rule:

  • 80% of the time, aim to eat an abundance of nourishing foods that keep us feeling our best
  • 20% of the time, allow yourself to indulge or eat whatever is convenient (but maybe not nutritious)

This is also a good way to look at the 30 plants a week goal. For 80% of the weeks in the year, try to achieve as close to 30 plants a week as possible. But the remaining 20% of the time, whether it be over Christmas or on your summer vacation, eat what is convenient and feels good.

This might still include a variety of plants, as you’ll slowly build up habits to add them in and it’ll feel natural, but it’s good to take our foot off of the gas every now and then – especially when life is a bit less predictable.

Summary

By following these 15 tips, you’ll be on your way to eating a more plant-rich diet that’s both enjoyable and sustainable.

Remember, it’s okay to start small and gradually increase the number of plants you consume each week – I know 30 can seem like a big jump for some people.

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