A vegan diet provides many health benefits. For example, vegan meals have zero cholesterol since cholesterol is a component of animal products. Vegan meals also provide proper nutrition when a variety of vegetables, fruit, and grains are eaten. This is a great article which summarizes the positive health effects of a vegan diet along with nutrition tips and recommendations. It also provides quotes from registered nutritionists from the American Dietetic Association.
If you are interested in expanding to new ingredients beyond the common vegetables used in most veggie meals, one option is to explore sea vegetables. There are more edible sea veggies than the seaweed wrapped around sushi. To be honest, I haven't used sea vegetables in my cooking except for a short time when I made my own sushi at home. However, in many kitchens in Asia and other parts of the world, consuming sea vegetables is very common and nutritious. This article lists some of the ones you're likely to find in the supermarket or specialty markets. It also provides some nutrition information.
I hear it mentioned often that eating healthy is expensive. I think that this may apply to premium packaged goods that are targeted to consumers who want to pay a lot for ultra high quality goods. However, in general, I found that my grocery bill went down when I made the transition to a meatless lifestyle. I was also able to make what I bought go further. So I was happy with the change. If you find that buying vegetables does hurt your shopping budget, here are some shopping tips.
Also, I produced an audio cast on 10 tips to buying affordable vegetables and fruits that might be helpful as well. It can be found on the "Table of Contents & Audio Casts" page on this website Hope it helps!
I use plenty of yams in my cooking. I like the orange colored flesh and the flavor. They combine well with other ingredients in soups and salads. In fact, one of my favorite meal cominations includes yams. But, according to this article, what we call yams are actually sweet potatoes and true yams, native to Africa, are slightly different than what we buy in the grocery store. This article explains the differences.
Make Simple Vegan Meals