When you choose to change your diet and go vegan, you should not forget to take supplements to support your health throughout the diet.
Remember that there are some nutrients that you can not acquire through foods alone, especially nutrients often associated with a meat-based diet.
Although being vegan means that you are only consuming plant-based products, taking supplements should still be part of your daily routine, along with exercise.
Hence, here are the five supplements that will help you support your vegan diet.
1 – Vitamin B-12
Having a vegan diet has its pros and cons, and one of its cons is it can put you at a greater risk of deficiency in vitamins and nutrients, most especially vitamin B-12.
We all know that vitamin B-12 can be mainly acquired from poultry, dairy, meat, and fish.
While vegans strictly avoid animal products in their diet and lifestyle, there are plant-based products that can be a good source of vitamin B-12, such as mushrooms, spirulina, and soy.
However, consuming these products will not meet your body’s required amount of vitamin B-12.
Therefore, acquiring it from supplements would be your best option.
You have to remember that vitamin B-12 is vital in forming oxygen that transports red blood cells.
It is also needed for protein metabolism.
2 – Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Deficiency in omega-3 while on a vegan diet is not surprising.
Instead, it is expected.
Omega-3 fatty acids are mainly acquired from fish.
Of course, you can acquire this nutrient from alternative plant-based sources for omega-3.
The food listed below contain the omega-3 nutrient:
- Chia seeds.
- Brussels Sprouts.
- Hemp Seed.
- Algal Oil.
- Perilla Oil.
But again, consuming these products won’t give you excellent results.
This is why taking omega-3 supplements will significantly help you make up for the deficiency of these nutrients in your body.
3 – Iron
Iron deficiency is one of the most common deficiencies, especially in women.
So actually, being vegan can give you access to vegetables and fruits to help with your iron deficiency.
Some of these fruits and veggies are spinach, beans, pomegranates, apples, and lentils.
However, for individuals who are already diagnosed with iron deficiency and are on a vegan diet, it is recommended to take iron supplements.
Eating all iron-rich vegan food will not be enough to help make up for the loss.
Only a supplement can improve the amount of iron in your system.
Just because you ate a lot of iron-rich food doesn’t mean that you can cope with the deficiency.
Physicians always prescribe iron supplements to their patients when they are diagnosed with iron deficiency.
Of course, this comes with the advice of proper diet and exercise.
It would be best if you took care of the iron in your body.
Iron is responsible for building healthy blood cells.
It also helps our blood carry oxygen throughout our bodies.
It is why you must be aware of the importance of iron supplements in your diet.
4 – Calcium
Another apparent deficiency you will have while on a vegan diet is calcium deficiency.
Calcium, as we all know, can be primarily acquired from dairy products.
But for vegans, the best food to consume for calcium intake is broccoli, cabbage, and ladies’ fingers.
On top of that, taking calcium supplements will help you cope up with the deficiency of calcium in your body.
Calcium is essential in the formation of your bones, teeth, heart health, and muscle function.
One research conducted in 2014 found out that vegans have the lowest calcium levels compared to vegetarians and omnivores.
This study is one proof that no matter how healthy you eat, you will still experience deficiency if you don’t get enough nutrients.
5 – Zinc
We hadn’t wholly acknowledged the importance of Zinc until the COVID-19 happened.
Zinc is an essential mineral that helps our immune system fight off diseases.
It also helps in repairing damaged body cells.
The recommended dietary allowance of Zinc is 8 to 11 mg a day for adults.
This allowance increases to 11 to 13 mg a day for pregnant or lactating women.
Few vegan alternatives can provide you with your iron needs, such as whole grains, tofu, legumes, nuts, and seeds.
However, this kind of iron you get from these plant-based sources has a low absorption rate because of its phytate content.
To ensure that you get the right amount of Zinc that your body needs even when you are on a vegan diet, you should take zinc supplements.
Five supplements can be a lot to take at once and can be expensive for your budget.
Because of this, it is advised to get coupons for medications and supplementations to get discounts when purchasing these supplements.
Don’t Be Complacent When It Comes to Your Health
Veganism is a healthy diet option.
It can help you manage your weight and live a healthy lifestyle.
However, it is still best to support your diet with proper exercise and supplements.
This will make sure that you get the best out of your vegan diet.
We are sure that you will not consume all the recommended dietary allowance through your daily vegan foods alone.
This is why taking supplements and eating more food rich in these nutrients is essential.
Don’t let your knowledge of veganism fool you into thinking that it has everything you need for a healthy lifestyle.
Although it is a healthy diet choice, deficiencies can still happen to individuals who are unaware of their daily intake.