A vegan diet is one that abstains from taking animal products including eggs, meat, honey and dairy products. We have to understand that a vegan diet is the strict form of vegetarian diet.
In the present day world as people are more conscious about their health, veganism is gaining popularity throughout the world. People follow a vegan lifestyle due to various reasons. Some people simply due to health reasons. Some become vegan for ethical reasons like avoiding harm to animals. Others may be due to environmental concerns. Some people also due to their taste i.e. some people do not like meat. Vegan diet has many fold advantages. Some people find that vegan lifestyle is hard to maintain. Despite its many fold advantages it too has some disadvantages. In this article we will explore pros and cons of vegan diet and by going through this article you can make a clear cut decision whether to follow veganism or not.
Pros Of Vegan Diet
Vegan diet has many fold advantages. These benefits may be related to health or environment. Following are the pros of vegan diet
A. Health Benefits
Veganism has numerous health benefits. Some health benefits of being vegan are listed below:
1. Reduces the blood sugar levels
The diet and type 2 diabetes are correlated. Various studies suggested that people with a vegan lifestyle have lower blood sugar levels indicating the risk of type 2 diabetes. It has been proven by several studies that a vegan diet significantly reduces the blood sugar level and hence prevents us from the risk of type 2 diabetes.
2. Higher fiber intake
According to doctors and nutritionists, we should consume about 30 grams of fiber daily. But we rarely consume that amount. But by having a plant based diet, we can meet our daily fiber requirement. Whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds contribute to fiber content in your diet. Fiber is less easily digested and requires longer time to be excreted. So, it keeps you full for a longer duration of time.
3. Good for Hypertension
High blood pressure is associated with several health problems including heart diseases, type 2 diabetes and many others. However, you can lower the risk of these diseases by following a healthy diet. Several studies have elucidated that a plant based diet significantly reduces the risk of hypertension and prevents you from several illnesses.
4. Less risk of cardiovascular diseases
Animal products including meat contain higher amounts of saturated fat that can cause numerous health associated problems. If meat and meat products are consumed in large amounts you will surely suffer from heart illness like stroke. Besides this plant based diet has a higher proportion of unsaturated fat that is beneficial for health. Thus just by replacing meat and meat products with a nutritious fresh plant based diet you can make your heart free from several types of diseases. According to one study, a plant based diet can reduce the risk of heart diseases by 46%.
Whole grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables and healthy oil are some plant based diets that can keep your heart free of illness.
Also Read: Vegan Keto Diet Plan And Food List
5. Possible remedy for arthritis
Vegan diet is also good for osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Since vegan diets are rich in antioxidants, they are excellent for remedy of arthritis. Replacing meat based diet with vegan diet you can get relief from pain, joint swelling and morning stiffness. These benefits are due to the higher antioxidant, probiotics and fiber content in the vegan diet.
6. Maximize the weight loss
As an animal based diet has high calorie content, it can put you on weight. So, by replacing animal based diet with plant based diet you can maximize your weight loss. So, if you want to keep yourself slim and healthy, you have to follow a vegan diet. Many studies have proven that weight loss was found maximum among the people with vegan diet as compared to non-vegan diet.
7. Reduces the risk of cancer
According to various studies, it has been found that vegan people have as much as 15% reduced risk of cancer. Following a vegan lifestyle, you can protect yourselves from the risk of various types of cancer including colon, prostate and pancreas tumors. Soy products protect you from the risk of breast cancer.
Excessive consumption of red meat, smoked meats and other types of processed meat increases the risk of various types of cancer and gradually replacing these meat products with plant based diets you may keep yourself away from risk of cancer.
8. Vegan diet can boost your mood
Several studies have shown that people following vegan diets are happier than meat eaters. Vegan people have got better scores on depression tests indicating that they are happier than meat eaters. Also some people find them at a comfortable position by abstaining from meat based products in their diet.
9. Mitigation of hunger problem
Excessive consumption of meat and other animal based products is one of the major causes of global hunger. Basically meat based products are exported to rich western countries and poor people have to suffer from this. Also for production of equivalent quantities of animal products more resources are consumed than plant based products. Thus by going vegan we can avoid the risk of global hunger to some extent.
B. Environmental Benefits
Veganism also has some environmental benefits. As global warming is an emerging issue of today’s world, environmentalists are focusing on the sustainable mitigation strategy. Among them, consumption of a plant based diet is one sustainable approach for climate change mitigation. Animal excreta like urine, manure are the major source of greenhouse gas emission despite their usefulness as manure in agriculture. Beside this per kg production of meat requires more resources as compared to the plant based product. Thus consuming more plant based products means more effective utilization of available resources. Thus, in this way we can say that a vegan diet is also beneficial for the environment. Plenty of water is required for the production of animal based products. So, in water scarce areas consuming plant based products have too many advantages.
C. Animal Welfare
Some people assume that consumption of animal based products like meat, fish is not good from an ethical perspective. Most animal activists have seriously raised the issue of animal welfare. They are stressed to stop the animal violence. So, people serious about animal welfare feel good for not consuming meat and meat based products.
Cons Of Vegan Diet
As we know that each and every thing has its ill sites. So does the vegan diet. Despite its many fold advantages vegan diet has following limitations:
1. Vegan diet may lead to deficiency of some vital nutrients
As a vegan diet abstains from all animal products. So, it has serious nutritional drawbacks. As per research findings, vegan diet lacks omega-3 fatty acid, vitamin B-12 and folate. Since these are the major constituent of meat and dairy products and hence abstaining from them leads us to nutritional deficiency.
2. Hard to follow the vegan lifestyle
In the areas where veganism is not popular, it is very difficult to maintain a vegan lifestyle. You may have difficulty finding supermarkets or grocery stores specialized in vegan diets. So, you have to apply greater effort for maintaining the vegan lifestyle.
3. Possible health issues
Although vegan diets have many fold positive advantages. However, going vegan might be associated with reduced body power and nutritional deficiency.
4. More difficulty for people having more physical work
Vegan people feel difficulty for performing the work that needs more physical work. Going vegan means consuming less calories and hence with this low calorie you cannot perform hard work out.
5. Imbalanced diet
Some people often criticize vegan diet as an imbalanced form of diet stressing on the fact that vegan diet is lacking various nutrients and vitamins and can lead to severe nutritional deficiency.
So, a vegan diet must be well planned in order to avoid the ill effect of being vegan. The potential nutritional deficiency must be taken into account before planning for veganism. You have to follow the guidelines of doctors or nutritionists in order to avoid the dangerous effect of veganism.
Veganism is much more than just abstaining from animal products in your diet. You should be aware about the fact that something tagged vegan is not always good for health. You should have a proper plan and schedule of your diet to obtain positive impacts of veganism. As mentioned in this article, veganism does also have some disadvantages. So, a poorly planned vegan diet may lead you to severe nutritional deficiency and other related issues. So, you must be wise enough while planning for a vegan diet. After going through this article you would have the knowledge about pros and cons of vegan diet. Give it a try and you can have many positive health benefits including lowered hypertension, reduced risk of cancer, lower blood sugar level, higher intake of fiber, reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases and lowered risk of different types of cancer. Since the positive sites of vegan diet outweighs its negative sites, so follow veganism and live healthier and happier life.