A vegetarian diet contains just plants (such as vegetables, grains, nuts and fruits) and foods produced using plants,Vegans don’t eat foods that come from animals, including dairy products and eggs.
Healthy eating as a vegan
You can get most of the nutrients you want from eating a changed and adjusted veggie lover diet.
For a healthy vegetarian diet:
- eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day
- base meals on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates (choose wholegrain where possible)
- have some dairy alternatives, such as soya drinks and yoghurts (choose lower-fat and lower-sugar options)
- eat some beans, pulses and other proteins
- choose unsaturated oils and spreads, and eat in small amounts
- drink plenty of fluids (the government recommends 6 to 8 cups or glasses a day)
If you choose to incorporate foods and drinks that are high in fat, salt or sugar, have them less frequently and in small amounts.
See the Eatwell Guide for more data about a healthy eating routine.
The Eatwell Guide applies to vegetarians, vegans, individuals of every ethnic beginning and those who are a healthy load for their height, as well as those who are overweight.
The main gathering the Eatwell Guide is not suitable for is children younger than 2, as they have different needs.
Getting the right nutrients from a vegan diet
With great preparation and an understanding of what makes up a healthy, adjusted veggie lover diet, you can get every one of the nutrients your body needs.
If you don’t design your eating routine appropriately, you could miss out on essential nutrients, such as calcium, iron and vitamin B12.
Vegans who are pregnant or breastfeeding
During pregnancy and when breastfeeding, ladies who follow a vegetarian diet need to ensure they get an adequate number of vitamins and minerals for their child to healthily create.
Figure out more about a veggie lover and vegetarian diet for mums-to-be.
If you’re raising your child or child on a vegetarian diet, you want to ensure they get a wide assortment of foods to give the energy and vitamins they need for development.
Vegan sources of calcium and vitamin D
Calcium is expected to keep up with healthy bones and teeth.
Non-vegans get most of their calcium from dairy foods (milk, cheese and yogurt), but vegans can get it from other foods.
Great sources of calcium for vegans include:
- green, leafy vegetables – such as broccoli, cabbage and okra, but not spinach (spinach does contain high levels of calcium but the body cannot digest it all)
- fortified unsweetened soya, rice and oat drinks
- calcium-set tofu
- sesame seeds and tahini
- brown and white bread (in the UK, calcium is added to white and brown flour by law)
- dried fruit, such as raisins, prunes, figs and dried apricots
A 30g piece of dried fruit counts as 1 of your 5 A Day, but should be eaten at mealtimes, not as a snack between meals, to diminish the effect of sugar on teeth.
The body needs vitamin D to direct how much calcium and phosphate in the body. These nutrients help keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy.
Great sources of vitamin D for vegans include:
- exposure to sunlight, particularly from late March/early April to the end of September – remember to cover up or protect your skin before it starts to turn red or burn (see vitamin D and sunlight)
- fortified fat spreads, breakfast cereals and unsweetened soya drinks (with vitamin D added)
- vitamin D supplements
Peruse the name to ensure the vitamin D used in an item is not of creature beginning.
Vegan sources of iron
Iron is essential for the development of red platelets.
A veggie lover diet can be high in iron, albeit iron from plant-based food is absorbed by the body less well than iron from meat.
Great sources of iron for vegans are:
- wholemeal bread and flour
- breakfast cereals fortified with iron
- dark green, leafy vegetables, such as watercress, broccoli and spring greens
- dried fruits, such as apricots, prunes and figs
Vegan sources of vitamin B12
The body needs vitamin B12 to keep up with healthy blood and a healthy nervous system.
Many individuals get vitamin B12 from creature sources, such as meat, fish and dairy products. Sources for vegans are limited and a vitamin B12 supplement might be required.
Sources of vitamin B12 for vegans include:
- breakfast cereals fortified with B12
- unsweetened soya drinks fortified with vitamin B12
- yeast extract, such as Marmite, which is fortified with vitamin B12
Vegan sources of omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 unsaturated fats, fundamentally those found in sleek fish, can help keep a healthy heart and decrease the risk of heart disease when eaten as part of a healthy eating regimen.
Sources of omega-3 unsaturated fats suitable for vegans include:
- flaxseed (linseed) oil
- rapeseed oil
- soya oil and soya-based foods, such as tofu
Proof suggests that plant sources of omega-3 unsaturated fats might not have the same benefits in lessening the risk of heart disease as those in slick fish.
But if you follow a vegetarian diet, you can still take care of your heart by eating no less than 5 portions of an assortment of fruit and vegetables consistently, cutting down on food that is high in saturated fat, and seeing how much salt you eat.