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The information I share in this blog is based on my personal experience, conclusions, observations and studies, or taken from books and educational materials, which are mentioned in the articles. I am not a medical professional, nor a health expert. Before implementing any of the information shared in this blog, consult with your physician or nutritionist!
Most Common Mistakes and Problems with Going Vegan
In the previous article, we have explored some of the most prominent benefits of going vegan.
But everything has two sides, and veganism is no exception.
When we extract a lot of food groups from our menu, there is always the risk of essential nutrients lack and vegan diet health risks!
So, today I want to share with you some insights and suggestions how to make your vegan meal plan healthier, so you can get the most out of this regimen!
If you are currently thinking about going vegan for the environment, take a look at the most common mistakes people make:
1. Not taking enough fiber
Going vegan does not necessarily mean your diet is healthy and nutritious! The chances of leaning towards too much white bread and processed veggies, like potato chips, cheeseburgers, etc. are very high. But they are vegan, right? So, what’s the problem?
The problem stems from not taking enough fiber with the food! Although our bodies are not equipped to digest water-insoluble fiber (unlike ruminants), it is still essential for our health and wellbeing. Fiber slows down the absorption of the carbohydrates and prevent from high blood sugar spikes. It also mechanically, but gently at the same time, brushes and stimulates the intestinal walls, preventing and healing from constipation. And last, but not least – fiber is the main food for the beneficial colon bacteria in our guts (called probiotics). The probiotics are responsible for our natural immunity and good digestion!
Learn more about boosting your colon health in the articles below:
2. Going Vegan with IBS
On the flip side of the coin – taking too much fiber combined with lots of fruit sugar, the vegan diet could lead to some gut health issues like flatulence and IBS flares, especially if you have sensitive intestines, gluten sensitivity, or irritable bowel syndrome. I know in recent years everyone is talking about the importance of fiber, but too much fiber is also a serious vegan diet side effect. Fiber can irritate the intestinal walls and block the absorption of some medications, supplements, and nutrients.
So, if you have been munching on lots of fiber-rich fruits, veggies, nuts, gluten-packed meals, and you experience some tummy discomforts, please consult with a doctor and consider the following suggestions:
BTW, I have a 3-part gluten-free recipe book bundle which also includes some vegan meals as well, you can check out here: The Gluten Free Cookbook Series Omnibus
Be careful with nuts and always use soaked raw ones – the water dissolves the irritating substances in their skin.
Consider trying the low FODMAP diet plan with a vegan spin which is perfect for IBS and bloating sufferers!
Focus on healthy fats such as coconut butter, avocado oil, cacao butter, etc. to battle the vegan diet vitamin D deficiency (essential vitamins K, A, D, and E are fat-soluble), and promote gut health! And don’t forget about the probiotics you can add to your diet plan to nurture your guts and promote intestinal health!
3. Too much sugar
The same goes for the desserts as well. When going vegan there is a high chance of falling for high-calorie and high-sugary foods instead of the healthy sweet stuff. Remember that not everything on the market labeled “vegan” or “organic” is healthy! Lots of companies are trying to cash on the latest vegan and bio trends, offering low-quality products which contain artificial sweeteners, white sugar, corn syrup, etc.
It is always a good idea to munch on some fresh fruits, veggies, and homemade fiber desserts instead of the store-bought stuff full of preservatives!
Be extremely careful if you have high blood sugar levels or insulin resistance, and always read the labels when following your going vegan grocery list! In this case, you must consult with your doctor and/or nutritionist before going vegan cold turkey to check whether this is the best nutritional plan for your needs. you may also consider doing a low carb variation – I have a whole book focused on how to apply the HFLC diet plan for women. and you can tweak it to match your food preferences!
If you need any ideas, check out my FREE book bundle packed with awesome immune boosting smoothies and healthy dessert recipes (without any white flour, white sugar, or artificial sweeteners)!
Click HERE and grab them!
As a side note, I wish to answer a quick question:
Can going vegan help you lose weight?
And my answer is – it depends.
First, it depends on how you apply the vegan diet – do you focus on healthy whole foods or processed junk food.
Second, your body type and its ability to process sugar. It is no secret that the vegan diet is much more rich in carbohydrates than any other macro-nutrient. Some bodies, such as the ectomorphs, are much better equipped at processing sugar and thus, the vegan diet can be a wonderful way to include more fruits and veggies in their meal plan.
On the other hand, mesomorphs and endomorphs have much more trouble with metabolizing carbs and this could lead to weight gain, insulin resistance, or something much more severe. After all, fruit sugar is still sugar. for these body types, following a moderate low carb diet plan along with tracking their macros for their vegan diet meal plan (I use Cronometer) might be the best solution for an easier weight-loss. In my book, The Energy Boosting LCHF Diet Plan, I explain how to do all these things without sacrificing your sanity or the chocolate cake!
4. Not enough protein
Yes, we can’t discuss the issues with vegan diet without mentioning the protein topic!
But it’s true – vegan food can be rather light and delicious, and keeping track of the amino acid consumption can be tricky!
So, try your best to frequently add protein-packed foods like lentils, beans (especially mung beans – they are less gassy), chickpeas, seeds, raw nuts.
Remember that there is always the option to add some vegan protein supplement to help you out!
Also, I highly recommend using a calculator to easily check your macro-nutrients and micro-nutrients for the day! As I mentioned before, my favorite one is Cronometer, which lets you track everything – your daily calories intake, carbohydrates, proteins, fats, amino acids, vitamins, micro-elements, minerals, energy spent, your normal metabolism, and much more!
You can set up your FREE account at chronometer.com right away!
The vegan diet and hair
There is something important I need to mention here when it comes to going vegan and proteins. Our hair is comprised of large amounts of proteins and amino acids, so one common problem with vegan diet is premature gray hair or hair loss. Back when I was a part vegetarian part vegan, my hair started to grow white very rapidly. My hairdresser said that was very common with her vegan clients due to the lack of vital proteins.
So, keep that in mind when weighing the going vegan pros and cons! Also, you can check my suggestion s for premature gray hair, and this hair-loss mask with natural oils.
Bonus! Poor oral hygiene
Unfortunately, the vegan diet can pose a certain level of risks for the teeth, if not executed correctly. Usually, when we exclude all the animal products from the menu, what’s left are fruits and veggies containing plenty of carbohydrates.
Consuming lots of carbs, even in the form of fruits and legumes, can be harmful to our fangs. Because as we know, carbohydrates are the main culprit for tooth decay!
That is why you need to take extra care and some preventive measures.
Here are some ideas:
- Rinse your mouth after each carb-rich meal – you can use diluted silver water, propolis tincture (also diluted), or simply swish it with some clean water. Do not brush your teeth for 30 minutes after you have consumed fruits (especially citruses), or something acidic (like apple cider vinegar)! They soften the enamel and make it more vulnerable – brushing the teeth will harm it even more!
- Use oil pulling with coconut oil (or any other type of cold pressed oil) first thing in the morning!
- Eat plenty of foods packed with Calcium (leafy greens, sesame seeds, sweet potatoes, carrots, etc.).
- Increase the Omega-3 and Omega-6 consumption – take plenty of natural oils from coconuts, avocados, olives, flax seeds, or add some organic vegan supplements.
- And of course – visit your dentist at least once a year!
If you need ideas to make your vegan diet healthier, check out “The Healthy Vegan Recipes Cookbook: Vegan Waffles and Pancakes, Incredible Cake Recipes, Vegetable Cupcakes, Fully Raw Vegan Recipes, and Other Veganish Meals Suitable for a Catholic Fasting“!
MORE THAN 80 HEALTHY VEGAN RECIPES FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY!
In this volume you will find:
– Healthy vegan main course dishes;
– Bread and salty snacks recipes.
– Dips and side dishes.
– Yummy sugar-free desserts.
– Interesting info about the numerous benefits of vegan foods.
– and much more!
“The Healthy Vegan Recipes Cookbook” is your guide to the world of healthy vegan cooking!
Stay tuned for more!
Til next time! Stay healthy!
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