What Vitamins and Minerals Vegans Miss From Their Diets
by Callum Allan on Nov 29, 2022
Going vegan is a lifestyle choice that more and more people are making. But there’s one thing to keep in mind—vegans need to make sure they are getting enough vitamins and minerals from their diets. If you're considering going vegan or already do, here's what you need to know about vitamins and minerals.
Vitamin B12 is a vitamin found in animal products such as meat, eggs, and dairy. As such, it can be hard for vegans to get enough of it. Vitamin B12 helps convert carbohydrates into energy and can help prevent anaemia. It also helps with proper nerve functioning, mental clarity, and metabolism. Vegans should look for foods fortified with vitamin B12 like some cereals, plant-based milk, or nutritional yeast. They should also consider taking a supplement if needed.
Iron is another mineral that vegans can miss out on if they don’t plan their diets properly. Iron helps transport oxygen throughout the body as well as create energy in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Iron can be found in legumes (beans, lentils), whole grains (quinoa), nuts (almonds) and vegetables (spinach). Eating these foods along with vitamin C-rich foods like oranges will help the body absorb iron more efficiently.
Calcium is important for vegans too since it strengthens bones and teeth. Good sources of calcium include dark leafy greens (kale), almonds, sesame seeds, oranges, figs, blackstrap molasses, tahini paste (sesame seed butter), fortified non-dairy milk alternatives like almond milk or oat milk and broccoli. Taking a calcium supplement may also be necessary depending on individual needs; always consult your doctor before adding any supplements to your diet!
All in all, vegans need to be aware that certain vitamins and minerals may not be present in their diets due to their avoidance of animal products. However, with some careful planning—including eating nutrient-rich foods as well as taking supplements when needed—vegans can ensure they get all the nutrients they need while still following a vegetarian lifestyle!