The vegan diet is often touted as being more healthy than an omnivorous one. Whether this is true or not is the subject of many a heated debate online. But I think we can all agree junk food is unhealthy, vegan or not. So what is the healthiest vegan diet? Let’s investigate …
Why Do People Stop Being Vegan?Most people stop being vegan because they don’t eat a varied enough mix of fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as not paying enough attention to supplements which are highly recommended for vegans. If your health suffers you’re unlikely to last the distance and that’s a shame …
What Is The Healthiest Vegan Diet?
The healthiest vegan diet is one rich in fresh fruit and vegetables and thin on junk food. A variety of (ideally organic) veg is key to ensuring you ingest the essential nutrients you need to maintain a healthy body. A supplement will also be advisable for most.
Firstly, it should be noted veganism is not a diet. Let’s get that out of the way.
If you’re unsure of what veganism actually is then use your favourite search engine to look into the ethics of veganism. It’s a belief system where the diet plays a pivotal role.
A vegan diet eliminates all animal products so to live a healthy life we need to ensure we’re nourishing our body with all the elements it needs to thrive.
Thankfully, nature provides it all.
Easier Than Ever To Eat The Unhealthy Vegan Option
My first exposure to veganism was in the early 90’s … I was 18 years old and I had no idea why these people were following a diet with no milk, meat, cheese etc.
They had an allotment and they always cooked fresh. They had weird pulses and grains in jars and the soya milk smelled funny. The aromas are a memory that sticks in my mind, oddly enough. I expect our kitchen smells about the same these days 🙂
Anyway, fast-forward 30 years or so … (where did that go?)
Visiting any supermarket today and you’re greeted with vast swathes of vegan friendly food choices. It’s growing every day as more and more companies cotton on to the vegan revolution!
I mean, why make crisps with milk in them, when you can omit the ingredient with no real discernible change to the product and open up a whole extra market to your offering?
You’d be mad not to.
Problem is, the commercialisation of the vegan movement has meant there are plenty of companies now just wanting to cash in. The vegan junk food revolution is upon us!
Healthy Vegans Eat Fresh & Take a Supplement
The advice is pretty clear. To give yourself the best chance of staying healthy on a vegan diet, you need to focus on consuming a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits, legumes, beans, nuts and seeds.
Shoving a double vegan cheese beyond burger down your gullet every day won’t cut it I’m afraid. Yes, you’re welcome to do that – everyone’s personal choice. But don’t expect to thrive on a diet of vegan junk.
It’s also worth supplementing your plant-based diet with Omega 3, vitamin D and Vitamin B12 … plenty of options out there in consumerland.
Almost everyone living in temperate climates is lacking vitamin D, so it’s certainly not a sign of weakness to supplement. It’s just good sense.
The official advice to combat Covid-19 was to ensure you supplement with vit D, especially in the Winter months when all the viruses are doing the rounds.
Staying Healthy Improves Chances Of Long Term Success
Many people decide to try a vegan diet, for a number of different reasons. They may love it initially but don’t eat enough fresh veg and don’t look after their nutrition.
It doesn’t take too long for the human body to respond to a lack of nutrition. It can manifest in many different ways from tiredness to full-on lethargy to lack of concentration to physical deterioration to increased risk of contracting disease. The list goes on.
When your vegan diet is making you sick then you’re highly unlikely to last long term, following this lifestyle. In fact with the mushrooming popularity of veganism comes the inevitable attrition.
You can find more and more stories online and increasingly in the print media from ex-vegans who claim the lifestyle made them so ill they nearly died or lost all their hair or grew another head.
We’ve come so far in this evolution, I even came across the struggling journalist’s guide to pretending to go vegan for a year or so then faking “the quit” in a sorry bid to garner a few more clicks or shares.
You have to feel a little bit sorry for these hacks really, if they feel the need for subterfuge so young into their career.
I guess it’s a natural result of veganism gaining more traction. You’re always going to have those tagging along for whatever ride they can get out of it.
So … do not believe all that you see and hear.
The Healthiest Vegan Diet Is Cheap & Really Easy!
All over Twitter, et al. you’ll see new vegans complaining about how expensive it is to live in this way. How vegan replacement products are offensively over priced.
… and I’d agree.
There are too many cashing in on the vegan thing now. The pricing on some vegan products is truly eye-watering. I do think it needs to be reined in a bit because apart from anything else, it excludes many on lower incomes.
Yes, a decent replacement milk is a bit pricey for what it is. It’s economies of scale. Cow’s milk is so cheap because the supply chain is optimised and the demand is astronomical.
Demand for vegan food products is, relatively, much smaller and this is how some companies justify charging so much for what is often sub-optimal food!
But most of us can afford some fruit and veg, I’d imagine?
The fact we’ve eliminated some very expensive food groups from our diet means we can spend that saving on a slab of vegan cheese or a barista oat milk.
If you focus on cooking from scratch with fresh ingredients you can’t go far wrong. Even organic veg is affordable, relative to a lump of beef. Although, competing on price with factory farm chicken may be more difficult!
Get down to your local grocer for some tasty veg, break out your chef’s hat and get cooking!
I hope you enjoyed this article and it has helped you in some form. If so please do share far and wide and leave me your thoughts below in the comments.
Thanks for reading and have a healthy day!