What Is the Plant Based Diet?
There are various sorts of plant based diets that range from occasional meat consumption to full out non-meat diets. As BBC Good Food puts it aptly, any type of vegetable based food can be healthy only if it contains balanced ingredients and is nutritionally sufficient. 
There are, in fact, a few genres of vegetable based diets. Partial vegetarians who still consume moderately meat and fish, but mainly on vegetarian based meal plans are called flexitarians. Dietary programs that include all vegetarian, with the inclusion of fish, are called pescatarian diets.
Vegetarians would be those who completely avoid fish and meat, but consume dairy products such as eggs and milk. Lastly, those who totally shave off animal based products such as milk, egg and honey are known as vegans.
How Does Plant Based Diet Work
When you are on a plant based diet, it essentially means that the meals are vegetable and fruit centric, with the inclusion of animal based products depending on the type of plant based diet plan one is adhering to.
Like all diets, there are the advantages and disadvantages to that specific type of regime, we will discuss more.
- Can be nutritionally rich and high in fiber
- Research study indicated that foods that are high in nuts, whole grains, fruits and vegetables can help to lower the incidence of heart diseases. 
- Another study indicated that plant based foods that are high in good fats, unrefined carbs and plant based protein played a big role in management and prevention of type 2 diabetes. 
- Higher vegetable, fruits and legume consumption has a positive impact on mortality rates. 
- Good for weight management, whole, plant based foods that are high in fiber can help to control the appetite.
- Deep fried starchy foods made of refined flour and vegetable oil are unhealthy and high in calories and fat
- Sweet desserts and beverages made of refined sugar can also be considered be plant based in many cases and can cause overweight issues and chronic illnesses in the long run
- Refined grains such as rice, pasta can be easily digested and converted to fats
- Can be overly seasoned with sodium (salt)
- For pure vegans, Vitamin B12 (generally from animal based foods) might be lacking.
Why is a plant-based diet bad?
There are a variety of unhealthy plant based foods which can be detrimental to health and weight management in the long run.
As mentioned in the previous section, over consumption of sugary foods are the number 1 reason why a plant based diet can result in weight gain and increase in the incidence of chronic illnesses such as diabetes in the long run.
Weight gain can also be caused when starchy vegetables (potatoes and corn) are consumed excessively, especially if they are deep fried. Plant based dishes can be seasoned with too much sodium to bolster taste, and can lead to hypertension which may result in cardiovascular illnesses.
Full profile amino acids (protein), omega 3 fatty acid and Vitamin B12 which are generally found in animal based foods might be lacking in many plant based cuisines. As such, in order to keep the body properly nourished, supplementation and sourcing of the corresponding types of vegetables that are rich in such nutrients is essential.
The key is to consume whole plant food sources that are nutritionally balanced, avoid refined or sugary foods to ensure a healthy plant based spread.
How Do You Eat a Plant Based Diet In Singapore?
- Leafy Vegetables such as Kailan, Xiao bai Cai, Kang Kong, Spinach etc
- Vegetables such as tomatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, bell peppers etc
- Starchy vegetables such as potatoes, corn, sweet potatoes, yam etc
- Good fats / Oil such as olive oil, avocados, coconut oil, sesame oil etc
- Whole grains such as brown / red rice, rolled oats, quinoa etc
- Legumes such as peas and beans
- Seed and nuts, baked and not with added flavourings
- Add flavour to your dishes through natural seasonings and herbs.
- Plant based protein sources from soy and plant based protein powder is essential
- Citrus fruits such as oranges and lemons
- Berries such as strawberries and blueberries
- Melons such as watermelons and cantalopes
Always consume fruits in moderation and avoid consuming juices as they can be high in fruit sugar. It is important to engage a nutritionist or doctor to run through your plant based diet regime to see if it is nutritionally balanced and if any added supplementation is required.
Where Do You Eat a Plant Based Diet In Singapore?
Vegetarian based foods are pretty common in your regular hawker centers and coffee shops. Do choose lightly stir fried, leafy vegetables, tofu and other non deep fried dishes. Brown rice is commonly available in these stalls, do choose that as your staple over bee hoon or white rice.
When preparing plant based dishes at home, make sure to include a variety of ingredients so as to ensure a balanced and nourishing meal. Use natural seasoning as opposed to too much sodium or MSG and lightly stir fry dishes with healthy oils.
Finish off the meal with whole fruits and avoid the accompaniment of sugary drinks or desserts.
Plant based food delivery is pretty common here in Singapore and choices are abundant. As mentioned by timeout, restaurants such as penarikan fare from The Peranakan Singapore to vegetarian bentos from the Whole Earth. 
Can you eat eggs on a plant based diet?
Other than a complete vegan diet, other plant based diets can include eggs. And it is a great source of protein and nutrients.
Can you drink coffee on a plant based diet?
Definitely. It is vegan friendly as long as milk is not included, other forms of plant based milk such as almond milk can be added. For other genres of plant based diets, dairy milk can be added. However, do moderate on the addition of sugar.
Are potatoes considered plant based?
Yes they are. Starchy vegetables like potatoes can be consumed but do moderate on its intake as it is high in carbohydrates.
Can I eat pasta on a plant-based diet?
Yes, pasta is accepted in all forms of plant based diets. Do choose healthier versions such as whole meal pasta so as to increase its fiber content.
You may also be interested in our article Keto Diet in Singapore and Food list.