The Playbook For The Modern Man

Nutrition Expert Busts Common Vegan Myth You Need To Stop Believing

Conscience eating will not (necessarily) make you skinny.

If you’re a life-long carnivore like myself, the prospect of giving it all up for a plant-based diet seems incredibly daunting. Still, it’s hard to ignore the evidence that a plant-based diet is better for you and the environment. Going vegan or vegetarian can be an easy way to lose weight and improve your overall fitness. Many athletes are even pursuing vegan diets and finding success.

But it’s not that simple. Just because you’re not eating meat doesn’t mean you’re magically going to become svelte. Despite popular conception, vegan doesn’t necessarily equal healthy – many vegan foods can be just as bad, if not worse for you, than their meaty counterparts.

A recent BBC article explored how many vegan fast foods are actually worse for you than their animal-based equivalents. Some ingredients that stand in for animal protein are nutritionally less valuable than the “real thing” (e.g. jackfruit vs. pulled pork). Alternatively, many vegan food items contain more sodium, sugar and saturated fat than their non-vegan equivalents, to make up for the “shortfall” in flavour.

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In fact, if you’re committing to a plant-based diet, you need to pay even closer attention to what you’re eating to make sure you’re getting the right stuff. The reality is that animal proteins contain a large variety of readily bioavailable must-haves – think amino acids, B-complex vitamins, calcium – that can be hard to source from plant-based alternatives.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that just because something is vegan, it’s better for you. But – while the ethical and environmental value of eating plants over animals might be enough to justify making the switch – don’t fool yourself into thinking that your conscience easing will change your waistline. Vegan junk food is still junk food. A nice home-made meal, regardless of whether it’s made with tofu or chicken, is going to be better for you.

 

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In short? Vegan snacks and alternatives can be a great way of easing in to a plant-based diet, but are no replacement for considered nutrition and exercise.

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  • Robert Thomas

    Vegans is a movement, a lifestyle, not a diet! It’s for the benefit of the environment and for animals.

  • Gabe

    Such a misleading article. Your argumentation basically says that eating a healthy meat/omnivore diet is better than a bad diet that omits animal products. Duh… So, what’s your point? You need to compare apples with apples (no pun intended). A balanced diet that includes meat and dairy is NOT superior or better for you than a balanced plant based diet: lower inflammation, lower blood pressure, better for the environment, and let’s not even start with animal cruelty.

  • Coy Bryant

    What a garbage article. I’ll make sure and remember not to come back to this garbage website.

  • bereniceweber

    I agree with the idea that vegan junk food is still junk food. BUT is very easy, cheap to get excellent sources of vegan protein and nutrients, you don’t have to think other than just beans, lentils, all pulses, complex carbs like whole grains and potatoes. And plenty of leafy greens and all sort of fruits and veggies. You don’t need any processed vegan foods, unless you want to indulge… The article forgets to mention that 99% of the meat on the market, available for everybody are usually full of antibiotics and hormones, and chicken has usually been treated with sodium to preserve a dead animal weeks before it is eaten. So yeah, a high protein, high in nutrients plant-based diet is very easily attainable!

  • bereniceweber

    And still can be super healthy too! If we switch from vegan french fries to vegan baked potatoes and rice and beans. But you are so right too. I was never a super healthy person to being with, I never looked away a piece of cake for my “health” and nutrients, and most people don’t do that either! But now I eat a vegan cake and know that I am not hurting anybody 🙂 and still cake, but I can eat it too, with joy and guilt-free 🙂

  • Uwe

    In more cases than not vegan is a fad to gain acceptance on social media. Very few vegans actually act vegan, but almost all of them have that “holier than thou” attitude. I’m pretty certain without social media vegan wouldn’t even be a thing. You’d have a handful of people who would live that lifestyle out of conviction, not to have a instagram following.
    I’ll take vegetarians over vegans any day of the week.

  • Virginia James

    Yes, vegan junk food, is essentially still junk food. However, if a meatless patty with sodium and no cholesterol (cholesterol only comes from animals) is helping those with cholesterol problems still enjoy a good burger… wtf is the big deal?

  • Claude Camire

    No matter what diet. The most important is to focus on your health biomarkers such as CRP, tg, HDL, neutrophils, testeterone, red blood cells width distribution, blood pressure, body fat, BMI, energy levels, b12, vit D and few others. If these are optimal, you are eating the optimal for your body. Most people are focused on weight, which is the wrong thing

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