" We're here to facilitate your plant-based journey "

PlantPlate.com is here to provide the recipes, information, and practical advice needed to follow a healthy plant-based diet. Whether you're interested in improving your health, losing weight, or eating more sustainably, a whole foods plant-based diet may be the perfect solution for you.

My name's Emma, and I started PlantPlate in 2013 with the help of my husband Scott, a web developer and fellow plantivore. I’m a certified Plant-Based Nutritionist who loves to cook, and I've followed a plant-based diet for over a decade. Having lived in various locations throughout the world - sometimes on a shoestring budget, and often with irregular and demanding work schedules - I’ve had to constantly adapt my diet in order to make it work. It’s taught me a lot, and it’s motivated me to show others just how accessible and enjoyable this way of eating can be.

The recipes featured on PlantPlate are based on minimally processed plant foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. They're free from all animal products, processed oils and refined carbohydrates, and are made with simple and affordable ingredients. Our articles are aimed at providing you with plant-based know-how when it comes to shopping, cooking, nutrition and day-to-day living. We have answers to common questions and share practical knowledge that we have acquired through experience. Finally, the resources section contains links to books, DVDs, and video presentations from some of the world's leading experts on plant-based nutrition. It is our hope that these resources will help you to fully understand and evaluate the health benefits of this wonderful way of eating.

Welcome to PlantPlate!  We hope you enjoy your visit. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email us at contact@plantplate.com.

The information on this website is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat health problems or illnesses without first consulting your doctor.

How to Replace Salt and Reduce Your Sodium Intake

Cutting the excess salt out of your diet can help reduce your risk of high blood pressure and heart problems. Learn how to do it with this helpful guide to healthy, flavourful salt substitutions.

Whether or not you have health conditions that require you to monitor your sodium intake, it's always advisable to keep an eye on the amount of salt in your diet. The recommended daily intake of sodium varies from about 600 - 2000 mg, depending on who you ask. Unfortunately, the average adult currently consumes double the amount at the higher end of this recommendation. Why is this a problem? Well, excess sodium intake is linked with high blood pressure, increased risk of heart and kidney problems, and osteoporosis. And of course, these are all things you definitely want to avoid!

You may think that if you eat healthily, you will automatically fall into the 1200 - 2000 mg range. While I definitely hope that's the case, I also know how easy it is to underestimate how much salt is present in your diet. Because it's added to just about every packaged food, including snacks, condiments, breads, cereals, tomato sauces, and even soy milk, it doesn't take much to exceed the recommended daily allowance. Fortunately, there are a few simple steps you can take to keep your sodium intake in check.

When purchasing products, be conscious and aware of the sodium content. A good rule of thumb, according to dietitian Jeff Novick, is to make sure that the sodium content of a food does not exceed the calorie content. For example: If a serving of bread contains 180 calories, check to see if the sodium content is 180 mg or less. If it is, then it qualifies. If not, search for one that's lower, and either purchase the best product you can, or find a healthier substitution. Condiments, stocks and sauces will almost always fall outside this range, but are generally okay provided that they are used in small quantities. However, you should buy low-sodium varieties whenever possible, or make your own salt-free versions at home, especially if you need to monitor your sodium intake for health reasons.

When it comes to cooking, there are a few simple steps you can take to reduce the amount of salt in your meals. This includes:

1. Using no-added-salt vegetable broth for soups, stews and sautéing purposes. Regular store-bought varieties can contain up to 1000 mg of sodium, which is obviously more than you need in one sitting! Low sodium and no-salt-added vegetable broths are widely available, or you can make your own vegetable broth at home, freeze portions, and use as needed.

2. Seasoning your food with with herbs and spices. This is the best way to flavour your meals without increasing the sodium content. Ginger, garlic and chilies form a great flavour base to which you can add herbs and spices according to the cuisine. Fresh herbs are particularly good for salads, soups and sandwich spreads; try livening things up with zesty varieties like dill and chives.

3. Using citrus juices and vinegar to season salads and vegetables. The astringent flavour of vinegar works excellently in place of salt, and will add plenty of flavour and vibrancy to the dish.

4. Cooking your own legumes at home, or buying canned varieties that have no added salt. Most health food stores, and some supermarkets, carry several varieties of canned, no-salt-added legumes. If you can't find these, then always be sure to drain and rinse your legumes well before using, or soak and cook your own legumes at home.

5. Using nutritional yeast in place of salt in some of your dishes can help. It has a kind of savoury, “cheesy” flavour, making it particularly good for pasta, cheese-less pizzas, and baked potatoes. It's not a whole-food per se, but it can be very handy if you're trying to transition away from added salt and animal products.

6. If you do add salt, add it at the table, rather than during cooking. Seasoning the surface of your food means the saltiness is more present, so you're like to use less. And this way, it's much easier to monitor exactly how much you're adding.



Article photo courtesy of Happy Krissy via Flickr