Published on November 1st, 2013 | by Joe Starks0
Eat That! The Vegan Diet
For many people losing a bit of weight comes hand in hand with food restriction. It comes to no surprise that many people cut out animal products from their diets so that they can lose some weight. Most take away food after all has meat, eggs or butter in it, so this can help you stick with very lean meals. Of course for some a Vegan diet is a lifestyle which focuses on abstaining from animal products for life, but that doesn’t stop many of using this diet as a weight loss choice. How effective is it really and is the Vegan diet safe? Let’s take a closer look.
What is the Vegan diet?
The Vegan diet is a strict version of vegetarianism. For some Vegan and vegetarian is the same thing, but many vegetarians do eat some animal products. People who eat Vegan avoid everything (as much as it is possible) that has been produced or comes from an animal. Vegetarians usually stick to food that didn’t kill an animal to be produced. So, while vegetarians might eat eggs, butter etc, anyone eating Vegan would never touch them.
It is an extremely restrictive diet if you have grown up in a typical Western country, but in lands like India it is a far more common matter.
There are still many things that you can eat while following a Vegan diet. Here is a list:
- Pulses, lentils and grains. So, you can eat many kinds of bread that don’t contain butter, eggs or milk.
- Vegetables. These are a great part of the diet as the name implies.
- Fruit. Probably the best part of the diet.
- Vegetable fat and oil.
For those who simply can’t imagine their life with such a limited choice of foods there are factory made products that use pulses or lentils to create dishes that imitate food made from animal products. Soy is often used to create fake meat and cheese products and can be quite pleasing when you have no other choice.
Is the Vegan diet healthy?
There is a great debate about how healthy the Vegan diet actually is. Some nutrients are very hard to come by just by eating the foods you are allowed to in a Vegan diet. This means that you probably have to take supplements to be sure that you eat as balanced as you would if you were eating animal products.
If you are extremely careful you can have a balanced Vegan diet, except for one vitamin. It is impossible to get vitamin B12 from anything else than animal products. This vitamin is extremely important for our nervous system and so can’t just be skipped. If you insist on a Vegan diet nonetheless there are pills containing B12. Make sure you make it clear you are Vegan to the Pharmacist, so that they give you a pill that contains your whole daily need of B12.
Doctors do not advise the Vegan diet for young children. It is near impossible to give a child optimal nutrition without at least some animal products that didn’t harm animals when farmed. So, you could give your child milk and eggs to ensure it grows up healthily.
How long should you follow the Vegan diet?
Unless you have some serious reasons for following this diet for longer than that, you should not exceed a few months of doing this diet. It is best if you plan 5 out of seven day a week to be Vegan and have two days with animal products.
You can also plan one of your three meals to be Vegan every day.
Just by cutting out meat and animal fat you will most probably lose some weight, as long as you don’t eat vegetable oil in their place. It is simply harder to be obese when you don’t eat a lot of meat, cheese, eggs etc.
Most people do abandon the Vegan diet quite quickly. Even those with ethical reasons to eat Vegan find it hard at times to follow such a restrictive diet. If you aren’t knows for your amazing self-control then you probably won’t find much success in such a heard diet to follow.
It is best to start with a lacto-ovo vegetarian diet if you wish to cut out some animal products from your life. It is by far easier and can still benefit your weight loss immensely.