Vegans are better informed about risks

Vegans are better informed about risks

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Expert: Vegan lifestyle can be good for your health

Vegans dispense with all animal foods and products with animal ingredients. The menu therefore mainly includes fruits, vegetables, nuts and cereal products. Meat, fish, dairy products, eggs and honey are taboo. Therefore, vegans often do not absorb certain nutrients such as vitamin B12 and calcium, or only in a small amount. In the run-up to the Berlin “VegMed” specialist conference in conversation with the “dpa” news agency, nutritional scientist Markus Keller points out that most vegans are well informed about possible deficiencies and take appropriate preparations for prevention. With a balanced food selection, the vegan lifestyle is beneficial for health, the expert said.

Vegan diets can lead to deficiencies Vegans are better informed than ever about possible nutrient deficiencies due to a purely plant-based diet. "Most vegans now know that you should pay special attention to the intake of certain critical nutrients such as vitamin B12 and calcium," explains Keller. Both nutrients are mainly or exclusively contained in animal products.

The nutritionist does research at the Institute for Alternative and Sustainable Nutrition in Gießen. As part of his studies, he seldom encounters vegans who are not yet taking vitamin B12 supplements, says Keller. However, the dosage is often not optimal or the intake is too irregular. However, a balanced, wholesome vegan diet can be beneficial to health. Studies have shown that. However, the number of vegan subjects is usually very small. In addition, studies on vegan nutrition in pregnant women, nursing mothers, children and athletes have so far been lacking. "Even the two largest epidemiological studies comparing the health of vegetarians and non-vegetarians only had a relatively small proportion of vegans in more than 150,000 subjects," reports the expert.

Preventing cardiovascular diseases with a vegan diet According to Keller, people who eat a purely plant-based diet are at the least risk of obesity and obesity, type 2 diabetes and other diet-related diseases. Because of its low cholesterol and low-fat diet, the vegan diet can protect against cardiovascular diseases and help you lose weight. In addition, fruits and vegetables contain many valuable antioxidants that are said to have an anti-cancer effect. On the other hand, the risk of cancer is even increased by eating red meat.

Many vegans have an overall healthier lifestyle because they consciously deal with their diet. The image of the "typical vegan" has also changed in public, explains Keller. This also suggests the growing range of special cookbooks, cafés and information events. "The way of eating is linked to health rather than deficiency today."

According to Keller, most vegans avoid animal foods for ethical reasons. Factory farming and environmental degradation are common motivations. According to the Vegetarian Association, seven million vegetarians and around 900,000 vegans live in Germany. (ag)

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