Veganism: sustainable strategy or food trend?
Many vegans report that they not only feel fitter and more balanced since changing their diet, many also swear by the purely plant-based diet to lose weight and get rid of skin diseases and allergies. Nevertheless, certain questions continue to arise in the media:
“Is the vegan lifestyle really that healthy?”
“How do I manage to eat free of animal products without having to go without anything or even become deficient?”
A vegan diet means no meat or fish, no eggs, no milk and therefore no dairy products; even honey is eliminated from the diet. More and more people in Germany are also choosing to completely avoid animal products Vegetarian Association now around 900,000.
In addition to animal and environmental protection, your own health is the biggest motive.
Vegans often live healthier lives, are fitter and more energetic. For example, according to studies, the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer is up to 50% lower for vegans than for fish and meat eaters. An important point in the Switching to an animal-free diet However, there is also something eaten that is left out. Vegans often eat much more consciously and are more critical when choosing their food. Because even White bread toast, fries, soft drinks and sugar are vegan, but at the same time low in vitamins and minerals. A nutrient deficiency is inevitable here, including side effects such as constant tiredness, sluggishness and even a higher susceptibility to infections.
“Vegan – how does it work?”
Despite or perhaps because of a vegan diet to become more resilient and stronger It is important to keep an eye on the critical nutrients: especially vitamin B12, proteins or essential amino acids from meat, fish or dairy products and long-chain omega-3 fatty acids such as from fatty sea fish. But also vitamin D as well as calcium, iron, iodine, zinc and selenium. Prominent examples such as Germany's strongest man Patrik Baboumian and boxing legend Mike Tyson show that vegan nutrition can also work in competitive sports.
“What can I do now to do everything right when switching to a vegan diet?”
In general, there is a lot to be said for a vegan diet if you keep the risks mentioned in mind. The food pyramid for vegans at the University of Giessen shows how to do it correctly. In addition to sufficient fluids, the basis of the diet should be fresh or frozen vegetables and fruit. Both are not only rich in vitamins and fiber, but also offer lots of minerals. Whole grain products and potatoes provide sufficient energy throughout the day, nuts, seeds and legumes are a good source of healthy fats, high-quality protein, vitamins and minerals.
Vegetable fats and other oils make up the top list along with snacks, sweets and alcohol. It is important to note that, in contrast to vegetable fats and oils, the latter is an “option” and not a “must”.
“I want to start tomorrow – where do I start?”
To start the day full of energy in the morning, it's a good idea to have one vegan smoothie made from fruit and vegetables, plant-based protein powder made from rice, sesame or pea protein, oat flakes, nuts, seeds and soy or oat milk with added calcium. It doesn't always have to be exotic: frozen fruit and vegetables are independent of the season and contain just as many nutrients as fresh, local flaxseeds offer the same variety of nutrients as chia seeds from South America. For main meals, meat can be replaced with alternatives such as tofu or tempeh, saitan or lupins.
A vegan diet is no guarantee of weight loss. Losing weight always comes down to having an energy deficit. However, when put together correctly, a vegan diet can be performance-enhancing and, above all, healthier. Due to the greater risk of suffering from a deficiency if the composition is incorrect, pregnant and breastfeeding women are generally advised against this form of nutrition. as well as children and young people.
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