Updated: Feb 17, 2020
A vegan lifestyle is not without its risks. Some people might approach it with the attitude that cutting animals out of their diets and calling it a day is good enough. However, there are some unfortunate differences that can result when we make a change like cutting out animal proteins from our diets.
One particularly important thing to consider is a source of B vitamins. B vitamins are important. Without enough of them, we can begin to feel sluggish and depressed, lack in energy, find it difficult to concentrate and focus on things that are important to us, or even cause ourselves nervous system damage or anaemia.
B12, in particular, is difficult for vegans to obtain because there are not a lot of vegan approved sources of this vitamin. If you are choosing to go vegan, this is a very important vitamin to consider. You will have to go out of your way to make sure that you are eating foods that are fortified in B12. Unfortunately, this is a vitamin that is specifically found in foods that are vegan un-friendly.
Without enough B12 in your system, the damages you experience can range from heart issues to complications with pregnancies. It is very important to know this before you even begin so that you are not depriving your body of such an important vitamin. You can take supplements daily if you are not able to get foods that are fortified but make sure you are getting at least 10mg daily.
You can also consider eating foods that will help your body to absorb the vitamin B12 better since it is going to be a resource that is particularly lacking in your diet, so it is extra important that you are able to absorb it easily. For example, if you are already suffering from anaemia, it can make it difficult for your body to absorb vitamin B12. It’s important that you are eating foods rich in iron and taking them with vitamin C, which will help your body to absorb the iron to combat the anaemia, ultimately helping your body to process vitamin B12 more effectively.
If there is one thing you will learn as you embark upon a journey of veganism, it’s that everything that you put into your body counts. Every choice we make is important and can have an impact, both on our health and on the world around us. We can choose to eat foods that will nourish us and provide us with the comfort we need in knowing we have made ethical and healthy choices that we can be proud of, or we can choose to look the other way.
But living in ignorance does not work for everybody. The more you know about your vegan lifestyle, the less likely you will be in making a mistake that could be costly to your health. So make sure that you are eating foods that have been fortified with vitamin B12 and pay attention to your food choices!