Balanced Diet

Myths Surrounding Veganism

Myth #1: The diet is not safe

Many people believe that the diet is unsafe, as is the case with some of the elimination diets. However, the fact is that anyone, including growing kids, pregnant women, teenagers, and adults can safely follow the vegan diet. The key is to eat a wide range of vegan foods to get all necessary nutrients.

Myth #2: The diet does not fulfill iron and protein requirements

As long as you eat a wide variety of foods, you can meet all your daily recommendations for protein, iron and other nutritional elements. Legumes, tofu, lentils, beans, grains, fortified cereals and breads contain lots of protein. In fact, 100 grams of firm tofu has the same amount of protein as that of 100 grams of eggs.  Foods like kale, spinach, chard, collards, and tempeh are all very high in iron. Also, keep in mind that vitamin C rich foods like tomatoes, bell peppers, and citrus fruits, all increase iron absorption. Choose whole grains in place of refined grains. Snack on nuts and seeds or add them liberally over your meals. Drink plenty of soy milk which has the equivalent protein content of most dairy products. The recipes discussed in this book are also very high in protein content.

Myth #3: The diet is lacking in calcium, as you do not consume dairy products

Many plants are rich sources of calcium. Research has actually shown that diets rich in fruits and vegetables may actually be better for bone health compared to animal protein based diets that affect bone health due to high levels of acidosis. Many green leafy vegetables, bok choy, tofu, almonds and blackstrap molasses can provide you with adequate levels of calcium.

Myth #4: Vegans are likely to be zinc deficient

Zinc is present in many plant sources including wholegrain breads, rolled oats, brown rice, nuts and seeds, legumes, tofu and soy products. Well planned meals can ensure zinc adequacy.