Truth and myths about vege eating

When you hear that somebody is on a vege diet of any kind, you will probably instantly wonder ‘but, doesn’t that mean you have to supplement yourself?’

In today’s blog we tackle few myths and truths about eating without meat.

Vegetarians are malnourished

That… is actually untrue. According to the EPIC-Oxford research from 2003, vegans had the highest intake of fibre, vitamins B1, C, E, as well as magnesium, iron and folate, with some of the meat eaters actually showing deficiency of one or more of the mentioned above elements. It has to do with vegans having to replace animal fats and proteins in their diets. As such, instead of fats, vegans use carbohydrates we can find in grains, and replace animal proteins with those found in beans and legumes, that are also rich in the vitamins.

Vitamin D/B12 exist only in meat!

Vitamin D is a by-product of processes only bacteria and microorganisms are capable of. As such, rather than eating meat, it’s eating those bacteria and cells that store said by-product is what mostly supplements intake of the vitamin D in our diets.

Most of the intake needed by us is actually produced within our body, upon skin exposure to the sun rays, the diet is mostly a secondary source of it.

While it’s true most of us supply vitamin D from the animal meat – liver is one of vitamin’s storages, so eating animal one raises the amount of it in our body – saying only vegans have vitamin D deficiency problem is untrue. In fact, unless you’re lucky enough to live in Mediterranean region like Malta, and getting exposed to a strong sun every day for most of the year, you probably have a deficiency of vitamin D, regardless of your diet.

As for the other elements… it’s true there’s less of them in plant foods, or they are less likely to assimilate in our body, but lack of them is not necessarily connected to lack of meat. For example, B12 is mostly found in fish products, specifically cod-liver oil, so even if you eat poultry and red meat, you might still develop deficiency. It all depends on how balanced your diet is.

You can eat only salad

While it’s slowly being pushed out, this stereotype about vegan cuisine is still present in public discussion. While it’s true that the most dominant elements of vegan diet are vegetables and fruits, there’s a fair share of grains and nuts that play a vital role in it. Plus, thanks to the cooking skills of vegan chefs, the variety of dishes prepared from just plant-products might astound even the biggest sceptic. Preparing a full-course meal with dessert and drinks, variety of tastes and lovely texture is not a problem. And better yet, there are places, like Vegefoodie in Malta, where this full-course meal will be prepared for you, not by you!

If you’re sceptical about vegetarian and vegan food, what is the better way to check it out than by ordering a meal you won’t have to prepare yourself?

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