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A lot of people are wondering if Vegan diets could cause vitamin deficiency.  It is known that a strict Vegan only eat fruits and vegetables.  Unlike vegetarians, a Vegan does not eat dairy products, eggs and honey.

Because Vegans get their nourishment purely from plant sources, there is a wide perception that they are more susceptible to vitamin deficiency.  By eliminating all kinds of foods that come from animal sources, Vegans can not get the vitamins and minerals found in fish, meat, and poultry.

However, Vegans contend that they could get all their nutritional and vitamin needs from plants and fruits.  The important thing is to identify vegetables that could serve as good alternatives to meat and fish.

Risk of Vitamin Deficiency among Vegans

Veganism is a way of life.  It is not just a diet program as widely believed by many people.  When you go Vegan, you are embracing a different nutritional principle that affects your lifestyle.

A problem may occur if you adopt the Vegan lifestyle haphazardly.  As a way of life, you need to thoroughly study Veganism and it includes finding the right foods that will give all your vitamin and mineral needs.  If you are not careful, then you could suffer from vitamin deficiency due to your Vegan diet.

One of the most common problems experienced by Vegans is vitamin B-12 deficiency.  Your body’s iron and calcium levels may also be affected by a very strict plant diet.  These are due to the elimination of eggs, fish, and milk from your daily meals.  This kind of vitamin deficiency could lead to general weakness, nausea, sleeplessness, and exhaustion.  Such symptoms could manifest because your body’s vitamin balance has been disturbed.

How to Prevent Vitamin Deficiency If You Are a Vegan

If you are really serious on becoming a full pledged Vegan, then you have to start by studying the vitamin and mineral content of fruits and vegetables.  You can do your research by reading online nutritional journals.  You may also consult a nutritionist or a dietitian so that you can get a comprehensive list of the nutritional values of fruits and vegetables.

Because there is a big risk of vitamin deficiency especially on vitamin B-12, you should increase your consumption of fortified cereals, soya milk, vegetable margarines, and yeast extracts.  You should also consider increasing your consumption of beans, dark green vegetables, and sun treated organic mushrooms for your calcium, iron, and vitamin D needs.

As a Vegan, you are not allowed to eat fatty fish and sea foods.  So you will miss their vitamin D content. In order to avoid D vitamin deficiency, then you need to make sure that you are getting enough sunlight.  You have to expose your skin to sunshine for at least 10 to 15 minutes per day to trigger the optimum production of vitamin D in your body.

Vegans are more susceptible to vitamin deficiency.  However, you can avoid a deficiency if you will carefully select vegetables and fruits that could substitute for meat, fish, and dairy products.

From everything written above, I think that you should focus on consuming more foods rich on vitamin B12 (Do you know that in Danish the term is B12 vitamin fødevarer?) to avoid vitamin deficiency.

 

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