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IS A VEGAN DIET HEALTHY?
By Mary Lynch
As a registered nutritionist, the question “Is the vegan diet healthy?” is one I get all the time, especially at this time of year.
Frustratingly, the answer is that it depends as much on what you eat as with any other diet. Someone living purely on ready salted crisps or chips, for example, would be technically following a vegan diet, but it would in no way be healthy.
However, research shows that there are potential benefits to a vegan diet. A recent study indicated that the average vegan diet is higher in vitamin C and fibre, and lower in saturated fat than one containing meat. In addition, statistics show that vegans have a lower BMI (heighttoweight ratio) than meat eaters – in other words, they are skinnier.
You see, a diet without any meat or dairy products is likely to contain a lot less saturated fat, which is related to increased cholesterol levels and increased risk of heart disease. We also know that fat contains more calories per gram than other foods, and so vegans may consume fewer calories as a result. Finally, a vegan diet is generally thought to contain more cereals, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds than a nonvegan diet.
Sounds great right? Not quite. In terms of micronutrients, a vegan diet is actually more susceptible to being nutritionally poor. A vegan diet is naturally low in calcium, vitamin D, iron, vitamin B12, zinc and omega3 fatty acids. Therefore, if you follow a vegan diet it is essential that you get enough of these nutrients through specific vegan food sources – and may even need to take additional supplements. We have many recipes suitable for vegans that can help, just check out our vegan section. In our features we also have this traditional hummus recipe, which contains tahini – a good source of calcium, zinc and iron, which are all micronutrients hard to get a hold of on a vegan diet.
So there you have it: going vegan does not necessarily mean you are going to be healthier. In fact, I think that much of the improvement in diets among vegans is a result of education rather than going meat free. In other words, if someone chooses to go vegan they are more likely to care about what they are eating and therefore are more likely to educate themselves on the types of foods they should and should not be eating.
From: https://goo.gl/AwDYY7. Accessed on 03/22/2017.
The suffix –y in the words healthy (1st paragraph) and fatty (5th paragraph) gives the idea of:
After reading the strip below, we can say that the customer:
stated a complaint.
gave a compliment.
was satisfied with the food.
started a quarrel.
disturbed other customers.
After reading the strip below, you can conclude that the dog:
isn´t so satisfied with his food;
is pleased to eat his food with meat;
is eating his food eagerly;
thinks he has the best owner;
was given delicious food.