Human consciousness has often been called a tricky thing to understand. While many people follow a vegetarian diet because they were probably born in a vegetarian family, most only start following such a diet after getting to know about it.
As the word says it all, veganism is the act of consuming and following a fully vegetarian diet. This diet consists of leafy vegetables and fruits, without the inclusion of any animal-based food products like milk, eggs, and meat.
However, there are is a stark contrast between a vegetarian and a vegan. Most people do not know that the term vegetarian applies to people who do not consume meat and fish but can opt to consume eggs and milk. A vegan, on the other hand, can be referred to as a pure vegetarian that refrains from consuming even milk and egg-based products.
What can you eat as a vegan?
Considering meat, milk, and eggs out of the equation, one might question what exactly to eat as a vegan? People all over the world all have this perception that there is a limited amount of vegan foods and dishes available. However, one would be surprised to know that there are actually lots of vegan food products available in the markets and restaurants. The best fact is that some of these dishes are so good, that non-vegetarians will be surprised by the taste and aroma of these dishes!
Fruits are an essential part of any person’s diet. This is because fruits contain lots of different kinds of vitamins and other nutrients that are essential in promoting greater facilitation of bodily functions. They are also rich in fibre (example – banana) that facilitates better bowel movement and helps in proper digestion. Fruits are also rich in antioxidants, that makes sure that your body stays in its top form at all times.
If you are vegan, consider adding citrus fruits and other kinds of fruits in your diet like apples, guavas, bananas, mangoes, watermelons, pineapples, and much more.
Green leafy vegetables like spinach, lettuce, and other green vegetables are some of the best sources of minerals like vitamins, iron, zinc, and other nutrients required by your body. Other vegetables like potatoes, brinjals, beetroot, onions, and more are great sources of carbohydrates, which provides your body with the energy it needs to keep on running.
A perfect salad will contain essential vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, lettuce leaves, and carrots. These vegetables and fruits are some of the most refreshing food to include in your diet. A salad contains almost every type of essential nutrients, along with water that will go a long way to keep you hydrated.
Dry fruits like cashews, raisins, dates, almonds, walnuts, pistachios, and apricots are some of the healthiest food products that a vegan should definitely incorporate in their diet. These foods are rich in vitamins, dietary fibres, proteins, and other essential nutrients that promote overall muscle growth and keeps them energised for them to work in the most effective way possible.
Beans and Pulses
Beans and pulses like green peas, baked beans, soybeans, lentils, pulses, chickpeas, lima beans, kidney beans and the variety of other beans and pulses available are rich in fibres, carbohydrates, and vitamins. These foods are also quite heavy, as a small amount of these beans and pulses will dimish your hunger by a considerable margin. Consider adding these to your diet if you want to keep good care of your health and also get the essential nutrients like proteins required.
Health benefits of a being a vegan
Being a vegan has many health benefits. Some of them are:
Vegan food products are considerably easier to digest than meat, milk, and eggs. This always keeps your stomach in top shape. This prevents any kind of gastric problems to happen, which is pretty much common for people who consume meat, fish, eggs, and milk-based products.
Better immunity to diseases
Vegan foods are considered to be much healthier than non-vegetarian foods as they increase and strengthen our immunity system. It has been reported that the risk of contracting many forms of cancer can be averted by having a vegan diet filled with green vegetables and dry fruits.
Healthier body functions
People suffering from acne, indigestion, hair fall, cough and cold, and other frequent illnesses can switch to a vegan diet to see great results. Vegan dishes cooked with less oil and spices is one of the healthiest meals one can have and incorporate in their diet.
Cons of being a vegan
Thinking that a vegan diet is without any disadvantages is a mistake many make. Some drawbacks of having a vegan diet are:
Lack of required supplements
Many nutrients and minerals like Proteins and vitamins are noticeably present in meagre quantities compared to non-vegetarian food products. This is why many vegans often suffer from protein and vitamin deficiency and take help of supplements to stay in top shape.
Lesser bone and lean muscle density
Early on in one’s life when growing up, having a vegan diet can be detrimental to one’s health as children require all forms of nutrients to grow up healthily. The lesser amount of proteins, vitamins, and calcium present in most vegetables can lead to growth deficiency. This is why it is recommended that children should follow a diet that contains milk and eggs in it, as they are essential for their fast-developing bodies.