The 3 pitfalls of Veganuary and how to avoid them
There is a lot of press around vegetarian, vegan and plant-based approaches and it might be that you are considering or trialling one of these. Whilst there are many benefits with taking part in Veganuary or adding in more plants into your existing diet, there are also a number of pitfalls which we can help you avoid.
BY GILLY BRUNTON, NUTRITIONIST
1. Check the labels on plant-based foods
Pre-packaged vegan and vegetarian foods can be presented in a way which makes them look like a healthier option. Unfortunately they still may contain additives and preservatives which disturb our gut health. It’s important to maintain helpful bacteria and immune cells that ward off infectious agents (bacteria, viruses and fungi). A healthy gut also communicates with the brain through nerves and hormones, which helps maintain general health and well-being.
2. Don’t become deficient
There are common deficiencies we see in vegans. Vitamin B12, Zinc, Iodine, Choline and Iron are paramount to our health and are often missing or devoid in a vegan diet. With this in mind, it is often advised to add a quality multivitamin, blend or even single nutrients at higher doses, especially when removing animal products from your diet.
Where to find good quality multivitamins
If you are moving to a plant-based diet, our award-winning Daily Multi Nutrients** provide a strong foundation and a full spectrum of vitamins, minerals and herbs to support busy lifestyles and promote energy and immunity.
**If you are trialing a vegan diet for Veganuary then this supplement will be suitable. However, if you are a strict ‘practicing’ vegan (for example, unable to consume certain dairy bacterias etc.) then this product will not be suitable for you.
3. Ensure you have enough protein in your diet
The NHS states that we should consume 50 grams of protein per day (45 grams for women and 55 grams for men). These amounts are based on a ‘sedentary individual’ and this amount will increase depending on how active you are (and the more active you are, the more protein your body needs). We also require more when recovering from an operation or illness to support healing and repair. Nearly all vegetables, beans, grains, nuts and seeds contain an amount of protein. Different sources of protein provide different types of amino acids. To ensure you have the full spectrum of amino acids it is important to get your protein from a variety of sources. If you feel you might struggle with getting the right quantity and quality, then consider a protein blend (ours is a protein superfood blend which contains 18 different amino acids and lots of additional valuable nutrition, antioxidants and botanical mushrooms).
If you are unsure or worried that you might not be consuming the vitamins and minerals to keep you and your family healthy then we offer a free consultation with one of our expert Nutritional Therapists. They are on hand to help and provide helpful, easy solutions: Free 15 min Video Appointment.