Are Vegans and Vegetarians healthier?


| 6 Comments
Vegan people are those that do not eat or consume animal products and/or byproducts.  This means that they don't eat any animal or products of those animals.  For example a vegan would not eat cheese, milk, or eggs because they directly come from the bodies of animals.  Vegetarians are slightly less strict.  They can eat animal byproducts, and often tend to curve the rules and allow themselves to eat fish.  The health benefits of choosing these dietary lifestyles have long been debated.  After all humans are meant to be carnivores/omnivores.  We are at the top of our food chain, therefore we have gained the right through years and years of evolution to be able to choose what animals to eat, where to eat them, and how we would like them cooked.  


Vegans and vegetarians do however run the risk of not having enough protein and calories in their diet.  Especially with the vegan diet, many practitioners must take a B12 vitamin supplement.  B12 is a nutrient that can only be found in animals.  The typical American diet consists of too much food, too many calories and too much sugar.  By practicing the vegan and vegetarian diets appropriately many people tend to be skinnier and healthier because they are not eating as much unhealthy foods that go hand in hand with the regular omnivore diet. Regular omnivores are exposed to the fats and cholesterols that are avoided by choosing a vegan/vegetarian diet.  

Humans are by definition omnivores (eat both plants and animals).  If you eat too much meat you tend to be following the eating habits of a carnivore or only meat eater.  If you eat a lot of meat, whether it be red meat, pork, or poultry you greatly increase your risk of cardiovascular and coronary problems.  Those who eat too much red meat greatly increase their chances of having heart related problems.  

Some added benefits of living a vegan lifestyle include lower BMI or body mass index, less body odor, no bad breath, stronger hair, healthier nails, less migraines, and decreased allergies and sick days.  Professional athletes such as NFL tight end Tony Gonzalez maintains a vegan lifestyle, so this shows that you can even perform physical activities at the highest level with such a diet.  

Whether you choose to be a vegan, vegetarian or omnivore, eating healthy is always a good idea. It is often hard for many to devote to the vegan/vegetarian lifestyle, so if you must eat like an omnivore, it is always smart to do so in an educated and responsible manner. 

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SOURCES:

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-4620/4-Unexpected-Benefits-of-Going-Vegan.html 

http://www.nursingdegree.net/blog/19/57-health-benefits-of-going-vegan/ 

http://www.thedailygreen.com/healthy-eating/blogs/healthy-food/healthy-vegan-diets-47020801

6 Comments

There are also more detrimental effects to your health is you choose a vegan diet. According to Livestrong.com, one is more susceptible to Iron Defeicecy Anemia, Vitamin B-12 Deficiency Anemia and Zinc Deficiency. These are the long term effects (not mentioned in your post) that limited your diet can bring. This is not to discourage you from being a vegetarian, because all of the potential bad effects are preventable. The American Dietetic Association strongly recommends a well-planned vegetarian diet for preventing diseases and optimal, overall health.

Source: http://www.livestrong.com/article/272373-long-term-bad-effects-of-vegetarian-diets/

After reading your blog, I found that almost
Some 10 million Americans consider themselves to be vegetarians. It is quite amazing number how that many people can consume vegetable-based diets. Vitamin B12, iron, zinc, and calcium are the most dietary needs for vegetarians. Those can be cunsumed by supplements. However, calcium supplements can cause side effects with other medicines so vegens should be careful with it. (http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,361598,00.html#ixzz2EEu9zFqb)

Although the benefits of living the vegan/vegeterian lifestyle are appealing there's no way I can give up eating meat. I don't think that the people who are choosing to live this lifestyle are healthier than others because I have seen some overweight vegetarians. Its all in your proportions and the lifestyle you choose. You must eat healthy and include exercise in your diet. Make sure you give yourself a balanced meal. Vegans and vegetarians are missing tons of proteins, which is something very essential for the body, and although there are B12 vitamins, I still feel like it doesnt compare to the natural proteins you get from animals. But hey, I'm not knocking anyone's lifestyle, if you choose to eat meat or not, that's up to you!

I've always considered going vegan or vegetarian to be leaner or healthier. In fact I have many vegetarian friends that are doing just fine in the health department. I think it's good to note that vegetarians do tend to be healthier than omnivores. The reason being omnivores have a wider selection of foods to eat, hence there will always be the temptation to eat more. Vegetarians on the other hand, have less choices, but they're choices are always guaranteed healthier because there's more vegetables. You can get a healthy amount of protein in a vegetarian diet, and it's a lot more healthy than eating red meat. The consumption of red meat can lead to heart disease. The vegetarian diet that you're describing sounds a lot like an article I wrote about the Japanese diet. A Japanese diet consists of most vegetables such as seaweed and a lot of fish, and they are indeed healthier. You can read about it here The Japanese live longer because of their diet. Being vegetarian gives you a lower rate of heart disease or other forms of cancer than non-vegetarians, and the vegetarian diet is more simple and easy to prepare. After doing this research and reading your article, I'm actually considering going vegetarian just for its easier health benefits.

I didn't know that eating too much meat could lead to health problems. It makes sense that vegans are more likely to lack the nutrition they need because they cut animals and their by-products out completely. I always thought the healthier option would be to become a vegetarian. I couldn't bring myself to do it because I love burgers too much, but adding more vegetables to my diet or meat alternatives couldn't hurt.

I think that vegans and vegetarians are only healthier if they very carefully regiment their caloric, Vitamin, and mineral intake. I have had quite a few friends that have gone on vegetarian or vegan diets and have had to change their diets back after only a few weeks due to excessive weight loss and a lack of necessary vitamins and minerals. While eating Vegan or vegetarian is very healthy and can lead to a very healthy human being if and only if, precautions are taken to ensure that the right amounts of everything are consumed.

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