Vegan Diet Benefits and Health Risks [Video] – Womenzilla Fitness
More and more people are targeting veganism as a way of life, in which diet is fundamental. Today we tell you what is the vegan diet, what are the benefits of eating vegan and the risks that can lead to a poorly balanced vegan diet. If you’re considering being a vegan, watch this video.
What is the vegan diet
The vegan diet is one that rejects any type of animal or animal source, that is, a vegan person does not eat any type of meat, but neither does dairy, eggs or honey, as well as processed foods that have ingredients in their ingredients. some ingredient of animal origins such as grenetine (gelatin of animal origin), casein and whey milk products) or carmine or cochineal (a compound that is obtained from beetles)
A complete and convinced vegan does not accept to eat any vegetable food for which work animals have been used for its cultivation. They also take into account the origin of chemical substances from pesticides, so they usually prefer organic and locally produced foods.
In addition, veganism does not accept any type of product of animal origin, so they do not use leather or silk in their clothing, nor most of the cosmetics, which usually contain ingredients of animal origin.
The reasons why a person decides to become vegan can be several, from care to the planet for health reasons and are generally recognized in the benefits of the vegan diet and the vegan lifestyle. There are also people who convert to veganism for religious reasons.
Veganism is usually considered one of the types of vegetarian diet, but many vegans name themselves as ‘pure’ vegetarians since they defend that in their lifestyle and their food 100% animal life is respected.
Benefits of the vegan diet
There are several benefits of the vegan diet and the vegan lifestyle, which generally become compelling reasons for people who decide to opt for veganism.
Take care of the environment
One of the benefits that are usually of weight for the vegan people is the environmental care. Vegans are against the overproduction of meat because it affects the life and living conditions of animals, but also directly impacts the environment.
Many detractors of veganism argue that large vegetable plantations also impact the environment, which is also a current reality. That is why many vegans, although not all (due to misinformation or because they can not afford it economically), prefer to opt for organic plant foods and local plantations so that the environmental impact is minimal. This is what some call living and conscious feeding.
A healthy diet
The well-done vegan diet considerably improves the health of those who follow it and prevents many diseases, due to a large number of nutrients that are obtained from the intake of foods of plant origin. This does not mean that it is the only healthy diet, but it is true that a vegan diet that is done correctly can prevent some types of diseases such as heart problems, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and it seems that some cancers, such as colon, breast, prostate, stomach, lung, and esophagus.
In addition, some studies say that it increases healthy life expectancy, improves premenstrual syndrome and prevents premature aging, due to the high amount of antioxidants contained in the vegan diet. The vegan diet also improves the immune system, helps prevent neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s and prevents some diseases related to the toxicity of foods of animal origin such as e-coli, salmonella or listeria.
It helps you maintain your ideal weight
Although it is not the main reason why a person should become vegan, the truth is that the vegan diet is a good ally against overweight. The fact of reducing saturated fats and increasing the consumption of fibers, vitamins, and minerals helps to lose weight and maintain an adequate weight according to body size.
And is that the vegan diet is a kind of detox for the body, as it helps eliminate harmful toxins to the body. In addition, much less is ingested, since a large part of the toxins that we acquire come from meat and dairy products, due to the number of hormones and chemicals that are used in animal feed.
Despite the numerous benefits of the vegan diet, many nutrition experts do not recommend it, mainly because it may entail certain nutritional risks if it is not carried out properly.
Deficiency of vitamin B-12
Vitamin B-12 is one of the most difficult to acquire by the human body since it is difficult for us to assimilate it, although it is essential for the functioning of our body. The foods that have the highest concentration of vitamin B-12 are meat, fish, and eggs, that is, animal proteins.
For a vegan diet to be totally healthy, it is necessary to take into account the daily intake of vegetable proteins in the amount necessary for the organism. Foods such as nuts, seeds, soy derivatives such as seitan or tofu, legumes, and whole grains should be very present in the diet properly combined.
Risk of iron loss
The human body is more biologically prepared to absorb iron from animal products since this is the same as that found in the red blood cells of humans, the so-called ‘iron heme’. The iron present in vegetables is not ‘heme iron’, which is why it is more difficult to absorb, to which it is added that some vegetables have components that decrease the absorption capacity of iron by the human body.
Therefore, a vegan diet should be rich in iron-rich plant foods: green leafy vegetables, such as kale whole grains, dark legumes such as black beans and lentils, iron-fortified cereals and some rich dried fruits in iron like prunes.
But in addition, for the absorption of iron to occur properly, it is necessary to combine them with foods rich in vitamin C: red fruits, tomatoes, cabbage, broccoli, and citrus.
Calcium and Omega 3
When giving up dairy products, the vegan diet should contain plant foods rich in calcium, such as green leafy vegetables (broccoli, coriander, spinach), sesame seeds, quinoa, tofu or almonds, among others. In addition, it is advisable to eat processed vegan foods enriched with calcium, such as vegetable milk or cereals.
As for Omega 3 fatty acids, practically the same thing happens with iron and calcium, we usually buy them from animal products such as fish. Vegans need to obtain them from certain foods that are often expensive and difficult to find, such as chia seeds or nuts, which must also be consumed in high proportions to provide enough fatty acids to the body.
In general, most vegans have to consume supplements of vitamin B-12, iron, calcium or Omega 3 fatty acids at some point in their lives.
You can get fat when you start the vegan diet
If you do not know well what your diet should be like on a vegan diet, you can run the risk of gaining weight and increasing body fat levels. There are several reasons why some gain weight when starting a vegan or vegetarian diet, but the main one is the error of increasing the intake of sugars and carbohydrates.
A healthy vegan diet is possible?
Yes, it is possible, as long as it is done in a controlled manner. That is, you can not go from one day to another to a vegan diet, because to do it you have to have a series of basic knowledge about nutrition so that it truly is a balanced and healthy diet, and does not cause diseases derived from the lack of some vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients.
That is why the ideal is to go to a nutritionist before starting to become vegan, to set the guidelines for a healthy vegan diet and teach you how to do it correctly. It can even help you know how to improve your levels of vitamin B-12, iron, calcium and Omega 3 through supplements or the number of calories you need to take in a day to feel good.