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Potential Health Risks of Going Vegan

There might be potential health risks when going vegan; here is what to expect when going vegan and how to prevent risks.

Potential Health Risks of Going Vegan

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The vegan diet and lifestyle are taking the world by storm, with many people turning to plant-based eating to improve their health or reduce their carbon footprint on the earth. There might be potential health risks when going vegan; here is what to expect when going vegan and how to prevent risks. 

The Risks of Going Vegan

As with any diet change, there are risks if you have not adequately planned out your meals and made sure to include a healthy balance of vitamins and minerals. These are some of the most common risks of going vegan and how to prevent them. 

Low Iron

Iron deficiency impacts thousands of people worldwide; for many people going vegetarian and vegan, it becomes increasingly common. Iron is found in most leafy green vegetables and red meat. 

Women and adolescent girls are more at risk of battling with anaemia if they do not adequately adjust to improving their diet by including plant-based sources of iron. Including beans, legumes, beetroot, and leafy green vegetables are some of the best ways to increase your daily iron intake. Another fantastic way to improve your iron levels is to include citrus with your leafy green vegetables. 

Vitamin-B12 Deficiency

Vitamin-B12 is primarily found in animal products. It is vital for brain function and is essential for overall health. It is always necessary to have your vitamin B levels tested when switching to a plant-based diet, and make sure to include plenty of plant sources. 

Try including fortified plant milk, nutritional yeast into your daily diet. Patches and vitamin-b12 shots are also another way to ensure you get the proper amounts in. 

Protein Deficiency

Many people who take on a vegan diet tend to limit their meals if they have not appropriately researched or consulted with a dietician; protein deficiency from a lack of healthy vegetables and plant protein sources can become an issue. 

Protein deficiency can lead to fatigue, loss of hair, weight loss, depression, and muscle degeneration. Protein is vital for muscle growth and maintenance and can help prevent you from overeating. 

There are several ways that you can include protein while following a vegan diet: 

  • Tofu - One of the most common forms of vegan protein is tofu. It can be adapted to make sauces creamy and delicious and cooked in a batter for a crunchy and healthy bite. You can make tofu yourself with a tofu press or buy store-bought options.
     
  • Seitan - Another source of protein is an excellent way to include protein in your diet. Made from vital wheat gluten, it has health benefits such as keeping you feeling fuller for longer and a decent amount of protein. 
     
  • Plant milk - Many plant-based kinds of milk are made with legumes, beans, or nuts; they are rich protein sources. If they are fortified, they will contain omega 3 fatty acids, vital for brain function. 
     
  • Pea Protein - Peas are protein-dense. They are an essential part of any vegan diet. If you are ever concerned about protein, including a protein shake into your daily routine can help maintain your health. 
     
Potential Health Risks of Going Vegan
Potential Health Risks of Going Vegan

Low Energy and Weight

For many people first going vegan, it can feel overwhelming; most restaurants and supermarkets cater for many different options suited to meat-eaters. It can be confusing at first and frustrating trying to find healthy, tasty, and affordable vegan-friendly choices. 

This can often lead to under-eating and disordered eating. It is crucial to get the proper amounts of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy nutrient-rich vegetables in. Instead of living on salad alone, try to include as much variety as possible. It is vital to develop a healthy relationship with food when switching to plant-based eating. 

Depression

Depression is common in vegans with unbalanced diets. There are a few causes, such as love vitamin b-12, low protein levels, and anxiety around eating meals. 

Anxiety about getting the proper nutrients or perhaps eating the wrong thing is quite common among vegans. 

There are several ways to combat this:

  • Eating healthy balanced meals - try to include fruits and vegetables in your diet every day, with complex carbohydrates and proteins. 
     
  • Planning meals out - following a plant-based diet is easier if you plan your meals out. Preparing meals for two weeks can help you ensure that you reach your nutrient goals and better understand what your body needs. 
     
  • Phoning ahead of time - if you are going out for dinner, call the restaurant ahead of time; knowing that you have options or asking whether they would be able to accommodate you can help reduce feelings of anxiety. Most restaurants have vegetarian or vegan options on their menus or are willing to adapt a few meals to suit your needs. 
     
  • Be gentle with yourself - This is the most crucial part of any diet, be kind to yourself. Don't force yourself to eat foods that you do not enjoy.

Balance is Vital

It is vital to include a healthy balance of carbohydrates, protein, and leafy green vegetables. If you are ever struggling to follow a nutritious diet, consult a dietician that will be able to provide you with a meal plan to suit your budget, meal preferences and includes meals that are full of health benefits.


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