Chef Wendell: Reducing healthcare costs with plant-based diet

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Many are saying after they started a plant based diet, amazing changes occurred in every aspect of their physical and mental life. After nearly dying from heart disease and obesity, I switched to a plant-based diet and became a more authentic, wholesome, healthy version of myself. No matter where you are, right now is the time to start eating closer to earth. “I am not telling you that it’s going to be easy all the time—I’m going to tell you that it’s going to be worth it.”

Eating a diet loaded with plant-powerful foods is our biological design.

· Being sick a lot is our bodies way of telling us we are malnourished: something is wrong.

· Today’s American population is the sickest and most obese in human history.

· We put pharma “band-aids” over our body’s cries for help.

· We have the power to heal ourselves, and the power to be healthier and happier than we ever imagined possible.

· We pay more for our health care than any other country, and we do not have better health to show for it.

· Don’t blunt your gifts with inferior nutrition.

· Replace one, two to three days of your week’s meals to vegetarian options.

Benefits of following a plant-based diet:

· Reduced healthcare costs

· High in fiber, carbs, and protein, beans are generally feel-good foods that fill you up, balance blood sugar, maintain weight.

· More antioxidants, nutrients, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and less damaging fats.

· You will have more energy.

· Talents you didn’t know you had come to the surface

· You’ll sleep deeper, laughing more, feeling much better and friends will ask: “What exactly are you doing? You’re positively radiant.”

“Jerked” pinto bean tacos with spicy toasted corn, avocado and lime:


  • 2-15 oz. pouches or cans of pinto beans or 3 cups cooked-protein and fiber
  • 1 tsp. avocado or olive oil
  • ½ red onion, finely chopped-Anti-cancer
  • 1.5 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • ½ tsp. Himalayan salt
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika
  • ½ to ¾ tsp cayenne or half Scotch bonnet pepper, minced
  • ¼ to ½ tsp black pepper a good dash each of cinnamon, nutmeg and all spice Juice of half a lime-vitamin C 3 tbsp. water
  • ¼ tsp raw honey

Roasted Corn:

  • 2 cups corn kernels
  • ½ red onion
  • finely chopped
  • ¼ cup cilantro chopped
  • Salt pepper, cayenne or hot pepper and lime juice to taste


  • Avocado slices-healthiest food on earth
  • Himalayan salt,
  • black pepper
  • Lime juice

Jamaican Jerk Pinto Beans:

  • Drain beans, rinse and set aside.
  • Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent. 4 to 5 mins.
  • Add beans, hot pepper, spices, herbs and water and mix. Partially cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Taste and adjust salt and heat.

Roast the corn:

  • Gently toasted in skillet over medium fire till brown on edges
  • Add the cooled corn to a bowl with red onions and cilantro.
  • Add salt, pepper, and a dash of lime to taste.

Assemble the tacos:

  • Heat the tortillas over direct flame to crisp some of the edges. Add a good helping of beans, roasted corn, some avocado and a dash of lime.