In recent years, the number of people who decide to follow a vegan diet has increased, and veganism has already become a type of diet and a lifestyle.
When a person adopts veganism, they not only stop eating meat, dairy or gelatin but also reject any animal exploitation. They leave aside cosmetic brands that test on animals or clothing that has been made with them, for example.
But, as we said, the emblem of veganism is diet. Various factors have contributed to the increase in vegans, such as the inclusion of vegan products in supermarkets and the belief that it is beneficial for health since diet is associated with a healthy diet because its base is found in healthy nutrients such as vitamins and fiber.
However, this association is entirely wrong since just because a diet omits meat and animal products, it does not make it instantly healthy. A healthy diet should provide the human body with all its nutrients. Thus, there is some controversy since there is a risk when substances that are mainly found in products of animal origin, such as fats, calcium, or proteins, are not consumed.
What is the vegan diet?
The vegan diet is a type of food that does not include any animal product or that comes from animals. Derivatives such as eggs, milk, or honey are not allowed. Therefore, it consists of vegetables, mushrooms, legumes, fruits, cereals, nuts, and plant-derived products, such as tofu and almond or soy drink.
Nutritional advantages of the vegan diet compared to omnivorous diets.
- Fat and cholesterol intake are reduced. Saturated fats are mainly found in meat or cheese. Therefore, eliminating their information with the vegan diet reduces the risk of suffering from high cholesterol.
- Increase the intake of fiber and vitamin C. With the high consumption of vegetables, legumes, and fruit. We increase the fiber and some vitamins to achieve a more robust immune system.
The vegan diet must always be of quality and follow some guidelines because if we base it on cookies, processed foods, chocolates, and buns, even if they are vegan, we can increase our weight and lose a lot of health.
Does the vegan diet omit essential nutrients?
A well-planned and planned vegan diet could become complete and healthy, although it is complicated. All the nutrients the body needs can be obtained if carried out rigorously. However, it is essential to remember-that by stopping eating products of animal origin, we can lose the intake of the following nutrients, and therefore they must be replaced:
- Protein. Protein is essentially obtained from meat and is vital for the growth and maintenance of tissues such as organs, muscles, and skin.
- Calcium. Calcium is usually obtained from milk or cheese and strengthens bones, muscles, and the nervous system.
- Iron. Iron contributes to the formation of red blood-cells responsible for distributing oxygen throughout the body.
- B12 vitamin. It has a fundamental role in the cellular function of the blood and helps our nervous system to remain healthy.
It is essential to consider these data and look for plant-based foods that help achieve the recommended daily intake of these nutrients. We get iron in dozens of foods such as green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, some cereals. Additionally, consuming vitamin C can aid in the body’s ability to absorb the iron from these foods.
Calcium is also abundant in nuts, seeds, vegetables, whole grain products, legumes. Some vegetables rich in easily absorbed calcium are kale or cauliflower. We can also find this mineral in vegetable drinks, although we must monitor their caloric intake.
Protein can be found in chickpeas, beans, pistachios, soybeans, etc. Still, we must remember that vegetable protein is not a complete protein (of high biological value) as animal protein is. Therefore, for our body to be able to use vegetable protein, it must be combined with other sources of protein in the appropriate measure, such as cereals. Another fact to keep in mind is that although legumes, for example, have protein, they also have many more calories than animal protein. The usual portions of these are more diminutive. In other words, 100-150 grams of meat would be a normal portion, while the same amount of legumes is an exaggeration, which makes the protein intake less. It isn’t easy to make a good protein intake only with vegetable protein.
Usually, the only vitamin we should take is B12. You have to take a supplement and keep a proper follow-up with a nutritionist.