One of the things most vegans dread hearing is the question,
“If you don’t eat meat, how in the world do you get enough protein?”
For some reason, the rest of the world seems to forget that there are such things as plant proteins. While they may at times seem to build more lean muscle, there are actually body builders who succeed on a vegan diet and look just as ripped as body builders who swear by eating a ton of meat.
If you are a vegan, there are hundreds of options for you to get protein. There are the recommended dosages of fruits and vegetables, and even some protein powders that can be incorporated easily into your diet on a daily basis.
However, a lot of people assume in advance that vegans are uppity and moralistic, and look down on anyone who doesn’t understand or follow their vegan lifestyle. So rather than meeting this question with annoyance, it can be helpful to try to maintain a patient and helpful approach to people who are trying to understand the way you live.
Maybe they have considered a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle for themselves but simply don’t see how it is possible. if that is the case, then meeting their innocent inquirires with hostility can really dampen their spirits.
If somebody comes up and asks you how you get enough protein on a vegan diet, you can either be vague and say that you take supplements or eat the proper fruits or vegetables, or go into great detail. Soy protein is an option for vegans. Tofu, leafy green vegetables like kale and spinach, and several other leafy greens can provide a regular source of protein to our bodies.
A lot of people are afraid of the things that they don’t understand, and because of this it can be very difficult for them to wrap their heads around new ideas. While it can be frustrating at times to meet the same questions over and over again, the protein question is one that can easily be met with patience. A lot of the time it is asked out of genuine concern.
How can you possibly be healthy not eating meat?
We are programmed very early on to believe that meat is the best thing for us. We are promised to grow big and strong if we eat what is given to us without question. So if someone is asking you how you get their protein, sometimes what they are really asking is, “how can I be sure that you, as someone I care about, are as healthy as you should be based on this unconventional diet choice?”
If you meet the protein question with that attitude in mind, it may make it less frustrating to hear it on a regular basis. But if it still annoys you, another option is pasting on a smile and telling the person asking that your health is your concern and you are doing everything you need to do to maintain it. That might just be good enough.
The Importance of B12 While Living a Vegan Lifestyle
A vegan lifestyle is not without its risks. Some people might approach it with the attitude that cutting animals out of their diets and calling it a day is good enough. However, there are some unfortunate differences that can result when we make a change like cutting out animal proteins from our diets.
One particularly important thing to consider is a source of B vitamins. B vitamins are important. Without enough of them, we can begin to feel sluggish and depressed, lack in energy, find it difficult to concentrate and focus on things that are important to us, or even cause ourselves nervous system damage or anemia.
B12 in particular is difficult for vegans to obtain because there are not a lot of vegan approved sources of this vitamin
If you are choosing to go vegan, this is a very important vitamin to consider. You will have to go out of your way to make sure that you are eating foods that are fortified in B12. Unfortunately, this is a vitamin that is specifically found in foods that are vegan un-friendly.
Without enough B12 in your system, the damages you experience can range from heart issues to complications with pregnancies. It is very important to know this before you even begin so that you are not depriving your body of such an important vitamin. You can take supplements daily if you are not able to get foods that are fortified, but make sure you are getting at least 10mg daily.
You can also consider eating foods that will help your body to absorb the vitamin B12 better since it is going to be a resource that is particularly lacking in your diet, so it is extra important that you are able to absorb it easily.
For example, if you are already suffering from anemia, it can make it difficult for your body to absorb vitamin B12. It’s important that you are eating foods rich in iron and taking them with vitamin C, which will help your body to absorb the iron to combat the anemia, ultimately helping your body to process vitamin B12 more effectively.
If there is one thing you will learn as you embark upon a journey of veganism, it’s that everything that you put into your body counts. Every choice we make is important and can have an impact, both on our health and on the world around us.
We can choose to eat foods that will nourish us and provide us with the comfort we need in knowing we have made ethical and healthy choices that we can be proud of, or we can choose to look the other way.
But living in ignorance does not work for everybody. The more you know about your vegan lifestyle, the less likely you will be in making a mistake that could be costly to your health.
So make sure that you are eating foods that have been fortified with vitamin B12 and pay attention to your food choices!
The Importance of Iron When Living a Vegan Lifestyle
Eating vegan can come with a lot of little lifestyle changes, but some of them are very important while others may come down to a matter of preference. Preference should have nothing to do with making sure that you get every vitamin and mineral you should have on a daily basis.
Unfortunately, a few too many vegans may easily neglect this aspect of veganism, and later on in life or throughout the course of their diets they begin to encounter some health issues that they could have easily prevented with a little bit of preparation.
Iron is something that is necessary for our bodies to thrive. Without enough iron supply, it can be easy for us to develop anemia, which can ultimately cause heart issues and other uncomfortable symptoms, such as fatigue and easy bruising that can be slow to heal.
It is a preventable disease however, and if you are paying close attention to your diet, then you will easily be able to avoid any iron-deficiency anemia that could rear its ugly head.
If you are iron deficient for too long, it can cause enlarging of the heart and several other uncomfortable conditions. Be sure to find ways to get your iron, whether that be through purchasing iron-fortified foods or by taking a supplement daily.
Be careful should you opt for a supplement. They have a bad reputation for plugging you up and causing gastrointestinal distress. The best way to get any vitamin is always through natural sources.
Eating a fair amount of spinach and potatoes are good ways to get healthy iron supplies. Other iron rich foods include tofu, lentils, and broccoli. All together that sounds like a good meal!
Alongside your iron-rich foods, ensure that you are primed for iron absorption as well. You can eat all the iron you want, but if your body isn’t receptive to it, then that can be just as bad as not eating any iron at all.
If you want some assurance that your body will be willing to absorb the nutrients you are feeding it, then eat vitamin c along with your iron. That way, you will have a better chance of getting everything your body needs in order to thrive.
Most people worry about your protein when you are living a vegan diet, but most people don’t come up and ask you where you are getting your iron and your B12 vitamins. Maybe they should change the question!
That way, it will be at the forefront of your mind every day to make sure you are getting good sources of these vital nutrients.
It is extremely worthwhile to go vegan, but make sure you are doing it in a way that is beneficial to you in all aspects, and don’t deprive your body of some of the most important things it needs to stay healthy.
Taking a daily vitamin can help in this regard. Check all the labels and choose one that is right for you!