Claire Cary Shows Us How to Include Pasta In Your Plant Based Diet
Pasta fits into all kinds of diets and food restrictions from the Mediterranean Diet to vegetarianism to gluten-free. Pasta is especially a mainstay in plant-based diets as it perfectly accommodates many other plant-based foods. For this month’s Pasta Spotlight, we’re connecting with Claire Carey, Certified Holistic Nutritionist behind Eat With Clarity on how pasta fits into a healthy diet and can be a fun and easy dish to make with little notice!
- Can you explain what it means to be a holistic nutritionist and practice holistic health?
As a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, I approach health and wellness with a mind-body approach. When a client comes to me with an issue, I take a look at not only their diet and exercise, but also at their lifestyle, relationships, stress level, history of trauma etc. All of these aspects play a role in our health, not just food. My primary focus right now is working with clients who struggle with acne, since this was something I dealt with for a long time and is very misunderstood. I work to improve their diet, lifestyle, enhance detoxification, and gut health. However, I work with clients struggling with a variety of issues!
- What are the benefits of a plant-based diet?
The benefits of a whole food plant-based diet are seemingly endless! Not only has a plant-based diet been shown to prevent many of our top killers (heart disease, cancer), but it can actually reverse many chronic diseases as well. Many people experience clearer skin, more energy, better sleep, and weight loss when consuming a plant-based diet. However, I always tell people that being plant-based does not have to be all or nothing. It’s ok if you want to indulge in some processed foods every now and then. The idea is to focus on adding in as many whole, unprocessed plant foods to your diet as possible. Eventually, many of the refined foods will no longer have a space on your plate because you’ll feel so good from eating the real stuff!
- How do you fit pasta into your diet?
If you talk to any member of my family, they’ll tell you I’ve been obsessed with pasta from the moment I was born! I practically survived on pasta alone for much of my elementary school years! (I was a very picky eater). But really, it’s always been one of my favorite foods, and I love that I can incorporate it into my diet in an easy and healthful way. In the colder months, I love cozy pasta dishes such as my easy fettucine alfredo, but as it warms up, I like to lighten it up with a fresh pesto sauce or an easy pasta salad!
- What are your recommendations for creating a pasta dish that’s both healthy and delicious?
Keep it simple! I love making sauces that are veggie based but satisfy even the pickiest of eaters! You can make sauces out of cauliflower, like I use with my dairy free alfredo, or bell peppers in my roasted red pepper penne. This adds a lot of nutrition! Also, I recommend choosing pastas with minimal ingredients, such as brown rice or chickpea pasta. I love using legume-based pasta to keep the fiber and protein content high, while still giving you that classic comfort food feeling of eating pasta.
- Finally, can you share one of your favorite pasta recipes with us?
One of my favorite recipes is my roasted red pepper penne. It’s packed with flavor and has a bunch of veggies snuck into the sauce. Plus, it only takes about 30 minutes to prepare, so it’s perfect for busy families or for people who just don’t like to cook!
About Claire Cary:
I’m Claire, a Certified Holistic Nutritionist who specializes in skin health. I help women (and men!) heal their skin and glow from the inside out through personalized nutrition, detoxification support, and natural healing modalities. I share nutritious recipes that are mostly plant-based and gluten free as well as holistic health tips to help you achieve optimal health and wellbeing.