Our advertising executive Sam is going vegan! Join him as he talks us through his experience of going vegan, gives his insight on the products that can help you transition, and gives advice on how to overcome any obstacles that a change in lifestyle can throw up… If you have any advice for him, please do share it in the comments below!
When going vegan, nutrition isn’t something to be taken lightly. Without the correct balance of nutrients, it is possible to develop serious health problems.
When you get the balance right, veganism can be an extremely healthy was to live your life. It’s a common misconception that vegan diets are deficient in nutrients (and protein!), but the truth is you can get almost all of the essential nutrients you need from a plant based diet, it just takes a little research. Leafy greens, like spinach and kale, are a great source of all types of nutrients – especially Iron – and as long as you make sure you’re eating enough, nuts and pulses provide you with enough healthy fats and protein. When I first decided to go vegan this Veganuary I was worried I might feel tired and hungry, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised at my energy levels (I don’t need so many coffees in the morning!), and have definitely not been going hungry!
Calcium is another thing people often worry about missing out on when they go vegan, but interestingly enough, calcium in cow’s milk cannot be easily absorbed by the body, which means that vegetables such as kale are actually much better sources of calcium than animal milks or ‘dairy’.
However, there are some nutrients that you will struggle to get enough from and this does call for some supplements to ensure that you are getting everything your body needs.
The big one is Vitamin B12 which helps brain and nervous system functioning and the formation of red blood cells. A lack of this nutrient can lead to anemia and the only reliable vegan source of this nutrient are fortified foods and supplements. Some plant milks and soy products are fortified with B12, but to be sure. it’s worth taking a supplement regularly.
Veganicity offer a wide range of all kinds of supplements, including B12, and you can be sure that everything is totally vegan – it’s best to start here.
Another nutrient that can often be missed is Omega 3. This can be obtained through leafy greens and the oils from nuts and seeds, but it’s worth looking into some supplements to ensure you’re getting enough. Testa Omega 3 is a vegan alternative to fish oils. Derived from algae, their products contain the same active ingredients as regular fish oil, without any cruelty and in a totally sustainable and environmentally responsible way.
If you’d like to get some more in-depth information on vegan nutrition, you can download our FREE beginners guide to nutrition, featuring articles on iron, calcium, B-12, seasonal eating and how to eat a well-balanced vegan diet. Simply sign-up to our newsletter below to get your copy!