The numbers of people switching to vegan lifestyles, either for ethics or health reasons, continues to grow.
The vegan lifestyle has been linked to decreased stress and increased happiness. It is however, important to remember, that when you switch your diet so drastically you should always discuss your decision with your doctor.
It is also important to have a game plan. Eating a vegan diet can have a lot of benefits, but it’s important to ensure what you are eating is nutritionally balanced.
Let’s take a look at the five most common mistakes that new vegans make and some tips that can help you avoid them
1. Pay attention to caloric quality.
Do you always feel hungry now that you have switched to a vegan diet? If you are feeling hungry, it is most likely because the calorie density of the vegan food you are eating now is much lower. You need to add bigger portions or switch to foods with higher caloric density.
2. Just because it’s vegan doesn’t make it healthy.
Too many people switching to a vegan lifestyle rush out to purchase processed veggie hot dogs, processed veggie burgers and other processed food. Many of these foods have less nutritional value that if you ate real non-processed food.
3. Get your nutrients from your food first.
Once many start their new vegan diet, they run out to buy supplements like calcium and B12. You can get calcium from tofu rather than milk and from leafy green vegetables. It’s important to discover ways to get necessary nutrients from your food.
4. Learn how to eat out.
Not all restaurants are set up for vegan diets, most do however sell salads so carry things like nuts, cranberries and raisins to spice up your meal.
5. Let your body tell you the truth.
The biggest mistake new vegetarians make is not listening to your body. It will take three or four weeks for your body to adjust, but if after that time period you still feel strange or overly hungry, it is time to reassess the nutrients you are getting.
Really listen to your body. It knows what your needs are. It’ll help lead you to the perfect vegan diet for you.