How to prevent nutritional deficiencies as a vegan or vegetarian

prevent nutritional

Preventing Nutritional Deficiencies as a Vegan or Vegetarian

Eating a vegan or vegetarian diet can be an excellent choice for a healthy lifestyle if you’re aware of the nutritional deficiencies that can occur in it. In this post, we will discuss how to avoid nutritional deficiencies while following a vegan or vegetarian diet.

Get Adequate Protein Intake

Getting enough protein in a vegan or vegetarian diet can be challenging, since traditional animal sources of protein are excluded. To get enough protein on a vegan or vegetarian diet, focus on plant-based proteins such as legumes, nuts and seeds, quinoa, and tofu. Try to incorporate at least two to three servings of plant-based proteins into daily meals.

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Include Calcium-Rich Foods

Calcium is found in dairy products, so vegans and vegetarians need to find alternative calcium sources. To replace this nutrient, vegans and vegetarians should incorporate foods such as fortified non-dairy milks, kale, broccoli, and nuts into their diet.

Enrich Your Diet With Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that only comes from animal products, so vegans and vegetarians must include alternative B12 sources in their diet. Good sources of vegan B12 include nutritional yeast, certain cereals, and fortified non-dairy milks.

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Eat Enough Iron

Iron is an essential mineral for vegans and vegetarians, especially for women. Iron from plant-based sources is not as easily absorbed as that from animal sources, so vegans and vegetarians should have more than double the recommended iron intake. Sources of vegan iron include lentils, quinoa, dark leafy greens, and certain cereals.

Balance Omega-3 and Omega-6 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids must be carefully balanced in order to achieve a healthy diet. Vegans should include foods such as walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds in their diet in order to get enough omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-6 fatty acids can be found in vegetable oils, nuts and seeds, and legumes.

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Conclusion

Following a vegan or vegetarian diet can be a smart choice if done with awareness of the necessary nutrients to maintain a healthy lifestyle. To prevent nutritional deficiencies, be sure to include protein-rich sources, fortified non-dairy milks, and plenty of iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and omega-6 fatty acids.

Keywords: vegan, vegetarian, diet, protein, calcium, vitamin B12, iron, omega-3, omega-6 fatty acids, health, Nutrition