The Basics of a Vegan Diet

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Published: January 12, 2023

“Going vegan” has been one of the most largely followed trends in recent years, and there are many reasons people choose the plant-based lifestyle. Besides the health benefits, there is love for the animals and the environment and their religious views. However, before you make any drastic changes to your lifestyle, you must get familiar with the basics of a vegan diet. This is especially true if you have specific fitness goals. With some helpful advice from a personal coach Dubai offers, you will have the body you want with no guilty conscious.

What are the basics of a vegan diet?

Anyone wishing to lead a healthier lifestyle knows that it cannot exclude fitness and nutrition. This means that if you want to be the happiest, healthiest version of yourself, you will need to take care of your body on the inside and outside. This is why a vegan meal plan Dubai professionals can create for you might be the best option. Trained experts know how to balance micro and macronutrients based on your level of activity, fitness goals, health, and diet preferences, without risking your well-being.

a plate of vegan food and some veggies scattered on the table
If you are considering switching to a plant-based lifestyle, make sure to learn all the basics of a vegan diet.

The basics of a vegan diet imply that a person shouldn’t eat meat or other animal products. This means that if you wish to become a vegan, you will have to say goodbye to meat, fish, eggs, cheese, and other animal products. Before you gasp in disbelief, hear us out. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Dairy products like cheese, milk, and yogurt with hormones that can mess with your hormonal balance. This is why many people with this kind of problem switch to the vegan diet.

What to eat and what not to eat

You will need to be extra careful when choosing a vegan meal plan. There is such a thing as an unhealthy vegan diet. If you aren’t committed, you may end up eating highly processed foods that are terrible for your health. Vegan cookies aren’t healthier than regular cookies just because there is the word VEGAN on the box. Those foods can have a high percentage of saturated fat, coconut oil, or palm oil, which isn’t the best option for a healthy diet.

Instead, focus on eating nutritious, healthy foods such as hummus, carrots, whole-grain bread, or avocado. Furthermore, ensure to avoid foods you are allergic to. For instance, if you have trouble digesting gluten, choose a vegan, gluten free meal plan Dubai experts can design for you. However, having a healthy vegan snack now and then is definitely ok. And there are many delicious sweet vegan snack recipes you can try.

a healthy snack can be implemented in the basics of a vegan diet
Having an occasional vegan snack is completely fine. Just make sure to eat more healthy than unhealthy foods.

Don’t forget the Omega 3’s and Vitamin B-12

Even though your choice of vegan food is healthy, it may be wise to incorporate some essential nutrients into your diet. Omega 3 fatty acids are extremely important for brain development and heart health. However, they are mainly found in fish like tuna and salmon. To have a healthy dose of this nutrient in your diet, make sure to eat plenty of walnuts, soy, canola oil, and flaxseed. Furthermore, it might be necessary to take some supplements of omega 3 fatty acids, but ensure you consult with your doctor first.

On the other hand, vitamin B-12 plays a vital role in transforming food into energy. If you don’t get the recommended dosage of 2.4 micrograms, you may develop a set of health issues. The tricky part is that this vitamin is mainly found in poultry, eggs, fish, and dairy foods. People who follow a vegan diet may get their dosage of B-12 through energy bars or fortified cereals. However, it would be a good idea to consult with a professional in Dubai UAE about taking supplements.

Iron and Vitamin D intake make all the difference

Iron and vitamin D intake are other crucial factors you need to consider when taking up the vegan diet. Vitamin D is usually found in sardines, other canned fish, and dairy products like yogurt and milk. However, vitamin D is equally essential for vegans and non-vegans.

It would be best to consume a lot of soy milk, almond milk, and orange juice. Some mushrooms exposed to UV light might be excellent sources of vitamin D too. Also, our skin synthesizes vitamin D more efficiently during the summer months when the sun is more potent. However, many people, including vegans, suffer from vitamin D insufficiency. This is why it would be best to consider taking supplements and discussing them with a doctor.

a bowl of fruit and oatmeal implemented in the basics of a vegan diet
Iron and vitamin D are somewhat difficult to implement in a vegan diet.

Be careful when combining plant-based iron with certain foods

Iron is another nutrient vegans should pay special attention to. Since its primary sources are chicken and other meat, it may be challenging to implement them into a vegan diet. Nevertheless, vegans can get their iron from leafy greens, legumes, and beans that are rich in this mineral. However, it is much harder to absorb plant-based iron than the iron coming from meat. This is why it would be best to combine eating plant-based iron and foods rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C boost iron absorption. But be careful with combining plant-based iron with calcium-rich food since it can inhibit iron absorption.

In what way is a vegan diet healthier than other diets?

You may have already heard that eating more vegetables and less meat benefits your overall health. And this is very much true if you follow one of the Dubai meal plans that are rich with food like fruit, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains. Eating such a healthy variety of foods improves your overall physical and mental health and helps with some chronic illnesses like:

  • DiabetesThe vegan diet has been proven to help manage diabetes by lowering A1C levels.
  • CancerThis diet also minimizes the risks of getting certain types of cancer, like colon cancer.
  • Heart diseaseBy implementing the basics of a vegan diet into your nutrition, you will see that it lowers the chances of heart disease since it reduces cholesterol levels.
a bowl of oatmeal
Switching to a vegan diet will benefit your overall physical and mental health and minimize the risks of chronic illnesses like cancer and diabetes.

How does veganism influence your fitness performance?

A vegan diet is excellent for those who want to lose a little bit of weight. Personal trainers from Dubai advise that incorporating a vegan diet into your diet plan for muscle gain and fat loss can be excellent for achieving these results.

To achieve your fitness goals, protein intake is still crucial. Maintaining the appropriate protein levels can be difficult when you are vegan. But it’s not impossible. Although protein mainly comes from meat and dairy products, there are plenty of vegan options for protein intake. Healthy and nutritious sources of protein you can implement in your athlete meal plan Dubai are the following:

  • Chickpeas
  • Tofu cheese
  • Lentils and beans
  • Peanuts
  • Almonds
  • Green peas
  • Soy milk
  • Oats and oatmeal
  • Quinoa
  • Chia seeds
  • Greek yoghurt
a bowl of hummus and some crackers next to it
Chickpeas are an excellent source of protein.

Final words

Hopefully, you now understand the basics of a vegan diet. The bottom line is to eat healthy, nutritious foods and avoid processed foods with high levels of saturated fat. Implement a lot of colorful foods and make sure to eat enough fruits and vegetables. But pay special attention to protein intake, iron, vitamin d, and B-12, and you will have a healthy, balanced vegan diet. However, we have to include a word of warning. Although the vegan diet is very healthy on its own, we highly recommend paying your doctor a visit before taking it up. Your body’s specific needs may not be fulfilled with this kind of diet.

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