This book contains all the evidence needed to prove that a whole food, plant based diet is the best thing you can do to mitigate diseases and living a healthy life. The author also has a website where he blogs about various things nutrition and health.
I only drink water and tea with occasional coffee. No sugar in food/drinks. I love exploring new and interesting vegan recipes.
Minimize high GI (glycemic index). It spikes blood sugar and insulin.
Eat many healthy fats. Avocados, Flax seed oil, etc.
Eat lots of high quality protein.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the largest professional organization for nutrition and dietary professionals, says plant-based diets can be safe and healthy at all stages of life. Additionally, a sizeable percentage of Seventh Day Adventists eat a plant-based diet, and population studies show that Adventists have overall excellent health. Evidence and scientific consensus are solidly on the side of plant-based diets being healthy.
So think about it this way, all of the animals people eat are herbivores, they eat plants only. All of the nutrients in animal products come from the plants they eat. All you're doing is cutting out the middle man and putting those plant nutrients directly into your body. On the B12 issue, most animal feeds are supplemented with it because they no longer graze on pasture where they would get it naturally. So again, you can take the supplement yourself or through an intermediary.
Final note, according to Michael Pollan unless you are actively ill with diabetes, heart disease, or some other ailment this diet can help, there is a negligible difference between a full whole foods vegan diet and someone who eats up to 10% of their calories from animal products. Personally I wouldn't for moral reasons. It's anecdotal but I reversed pre-diabetes and lost 40lbs eating this way and I have all of my blood levels done yearly. ALL of my markers are significantly better than before I was plant based.
Highlights from high-carb diet may explain why Okinawans live so long article:
sweet potato, rather than rice, is high-consumption food in the Okinawan diet
high engagement in agriculture and fishing jobs → high physical activity
possible effects of genetics — high presence of FOXO3 gene
10-to-1 carbs-to-protein consumption ratio, like in other particularly-long-lived populations – linked studies support the conclusion, though too early to judge definitively
most of the diet is vegetables and fruits; meats and fish are rare
calorie consumption is, on average, 13% lower than general population
studies suggest that plant-based protein intake have a more positive effect on the human organism than meat- and fished-based
their diet is not the "elixir of youth", as multiple interacting factors may be in play
You're talking about a recomp: reducing body fat percentage while maintaining overall body weight. You'll need to eat maintenance calories while insuring you get enough protein (.8-1g/lb of bodyweight) and doing strength training. This is a slow process. Commit to making strength training a regular part of your life for at least a year (do the RR), eat enough protein while not overeating, and you will have leaner body. Then do it for the rest of your life. The only other solution besides strength training is continuing to enforce a caloric deficit until you lose more weight. Eventually you will be thinner, but won't probably be very healthy (assuming you're an average height).
You should take into account that getting a "flat" body has many factors to take into account, from your body composition, genetics, diet, training, etc... I would take a deep look into your diet and maybe increase the protein intake, as a high consume in protein results in more lean body mass rather than being store as fat for the most part (if you are in caloric surplus) , other than that try to use exercises that focus on the spots you want to tone out, whether it is chest or stomach/abs, you CANT reduce fat from certain spots just by training those spots, as fat reduces at the same time in all your body (yes some people store more fat in certain areas but that's not the point) , training your chest and abs will bring the muscle out more, and if you are being GOOD with your diet you should be losing fat and making those parts stand out more at the same time.
Nutrition Facts - Has bias towards vegan foods. But whole food plant based diet is really the way to go.
Examine - Unbiased source on nutrition and supplements.
Lighter - Shows you what food to buy and how to throw great meals together, based on the recommendations of food leaders.
Plant Positive - Making the Case for Plant-Based Nutrition.
Precision Nutrition - Nutrition Certification, Coaching & Software.
Clockwork Nutrition - Automates meals based on your fitness and health goals.
FoodNoms - Food Tracker App for iPhone.
Nell Health - Genetic testing, health screening, health assessments based on diet and exercise.