By Abigail Carroll. Vegetarian Diet. At Monday, April 29th 2019, 06:16:22 AM.
It can be challenging to meet your nutritional needs while following a vegan diet. Certain nutrients like vitamin B12, vitamin D, and iodine, are found primarily in animal products and certain fortified foods.Plus, while non-heme iron occurs in a variety of plant foods, it may not be as well absorbed as the heme iron found in animal products. Taking a multivitamin or other supplements can help fill in any nutritional gaps and provide key micro-nutrients that you may be missing. For best results, look for a multivitamin that contains vitamin B12, zinc, iron, vitamin D, and calcium.
Vegan diets are rich in fiber, vitamin C and folate (thanks to all that fruit and veg), but you may be lacking in a number of other vitamins and minerals. Vitamin B12 is a good example. We need it for healthy red blood cells and nerve function, but because it’s typically found in animal foods like eggs, milk and cheese, full-time vegans need to include fortified breakfast cereals and soy products, and possibly consider taking a B12 supplement look for one that supplies 10 micro-grams daily).
Vegan diets are free of cholesterol and are generally low in saturated fat. Thus eating a vegan diet makes it easy to conform to recommendations given to reduce the risk of major chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer. High-fat foods, which should be used sparingly, include oils, margarine, nuts, nut butters, seed butters, avocado, and coconut. Vitamin D is not found in the vegan diet but can be made by humans following exposure to sunlight. At least ten to fifteen minutes of summer sun on hands and face two to three times a week is recommended for adults so that vitamin D production can occur. Food sources of vitamin D include vitamin D‐fortified soy milk and rice milk.