Top tips for Veganuary
The VITL Nutrition Team
Are you thinking of going vegan this January? Our in house nutritionists share their top 5 tips to help your journey towards a plant based diet easy, but most importantly, enjoyable!
Stock up on LOTS of fruit, vegetables and nuts
Fruit, vegetables and nuts will inevitably be the winners of your diet. Make sure to always have your fridge packed with a variety of those, so they are at hand when you are craving a snack. Baby carrots, cucumbers and celery with humus are an ideal salty snack; if you are craving something sweet, a handful of mixed nuts with dried fruit will do the trick!
Discover plant-based proteins to star in your 2 big meals of the day
Legumes, meat alternatives and mushrooms are some of the key ingredients to use in your lunch and dinner to help you feel full. Good vegan meat alternatives include tofu, seitan, vegan patties and many more, but make sure to read the label first, so that you are choosing the healthiest option (just because something is vegan, doesn’t necessarily mean it is always healthy!).
Keep it varied
Animal proteins are called "premium" because they are high in high-quality amino acids. Plant proteins, however, are incomplete, meaning no single plant protein contains all nine essential amino acids we need. To obtain a complete protein, different plant proteins must be combined. Adequate protein consumption is absolutely essential for optimal health. Vegans need to keep this in mind by including a variety of legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds, as well as dairy alternatives in their diet.
Be mindful of nutrient deficiencies
Vegan diets may fail to provide enough iron, omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, vitamin B12, calcium and vitamin D. Supplementation of those nutrients may be required to ensure adequate intake as a vegan. If you are anaemic, you may need to reconsider following a strictly plant based diet, or make sure to supplement with iron and vitamin B12, as advised by your doctor. We also strongly recommend taking Vitl’s blood test at the start and halfway through Veganuary to monitor your micronutrient levels.
Go gradually and enjoy the journey!
Regardless of the reason why you choose to go vegan this January, the journey should be fun! If you find it difficult to adhere to a strictly plant based diet overnight, try going vegan for 2 to 3 days a week. As your body adjusts to the change, you may find the transition easier as the weeks pass, and before long, you may find yourself going for the vegan option subconsciously!
From all of us at Vitl, good luck!
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