Record numbers of people are turning to veganism in the UK. Vegans do not eat meat, dairy products, seafood and other foods and items that may include animal by-products. Vegans also do not wear leather, wool or anything tested on animals. This once much maligned lifestyle is now seen as trendy, with much of the food industry catching onto its increasing popularity. However, there are still some misconceptions. Our TruBe trainer Angela Rochester is here to clear things up!
You can’t get enough protein
Vegans are often asked ‘Where do you get your protein from?’
Protein is not just restricted to meat. Protein can also be obtained from foods such as tofu and tempeh. Other sources include grains, pulses, nuts and seeds. Eating a variety of these foods means a vegan can achieve the recommended daily amount of protein. Vegans can also build muscle on a plant-based diet; check out Torre Washington!
The rise in vegan Instagram accounts shows the variety of meals that can be made. An internet search can provide a wide variety of alternatives. Do you miss pizza? Burgers? There are tasty vegan versions of these.
Vegans are Skinny and Automatically Healthy
Think carefully about the reasons for choosing to become vegan. Turning vegan will not help you with weight loss. Although it can certainly be very healthy, there are still highly processed vegan foods that contain a lot of sugar and salt which should be avoided to maintain a healthy weight.
Vegans lack energy
Vegans lack no more energy than those on other diets. However, they must check their intake of vitamin B12, which plays an important role in preventing anaemia and nervous system damage. It cannot be reliably sourced from a vegan diet but it can be obtained from fortified foods or taking B12 supplements. Gaining Iron from a vegan diet is also easy, if a wide range of fruit and vegetables are eaten. Include foods with vitamin C to further aid the absorption of iron. If you are unsure that you are gaining the right amount of nutrients from your diet, check with a doctor or dietician.
It takes a lot of planning
Just like any other diet or lifestyle, you need to plan what you eat in order to stay healthy. However, once you know what you need it becomes second nature!
Vegans can have lower levels of cholesterol, lower blood pressure, lower risk of diabetes and lower body mass indexes. However, those who have these benefits also tend to have balanced diets and stay active.
Helping the planet
The main reason for many being vegan is their concern for animals and the environment. It is less of a drain on global food supply and is a great choice for those concerned with animal welfare.
Those who adopt a vegan diet often report that they have less acne prone skin, stronger hair and nails and the reduction of bad breath and body odor!
It is easy to transition into/try out
If you are thinking about becoming a vegan you don’t have to leap into it. You can gradually see what suits you and there is no need to feel guilty if you make mistakes or if you think it is not right for you.
It can lead to greater self-control as you cannot simply grab anything when shopping for food. You will gradually pay more attention to what you put into your body which has great health benefits in itself!
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