Becoming Vegan: The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Plant-Based Diet

Becoming Vegan: The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Plant-Based Diet - Brenda Davis, Vesanto Melina It is the position of the American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada that appropriately planned vegetarian diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases....Well-planned vegan and other types of vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life-cycle including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence. (Source)...still, whenever I tell a family member of my decision to become vegan, the first response is always, "But how will you get your _____". Fill in the blank with one of the following: protein, calcium, iron, etc.. The short answer is "from plants", but for some reason, they don't consider that a cogent argument. So, I decided to start reading, with the plan of later finding a nutritionist open to veganism that can give me a full analysis. Davis and Melina seem to be on par with the ADA's position paper. Of course, there's that key word: well-planned. Any vegan who tries to subsist on french fries and Diet Coke is going to feel sick. (Duh!) However, considering the number of people suffering heart attacks in their forties (or even their thirties), perhaps it's less that vegan diets need planning and more that everyone should pay more attention to their nutritional needs, no matter their diet. While Davis and Melina are less reckless in recommending a vegan diet than John Robbins in Diet for a New America, they are also much more reassuring, providing myriad details of nutritional needs and effects. They openly admit to the fact that all vegans should supplement their B12 intake. (This is, in part, a result of industrial farming. B12 is created not by animals, but by bacteria in the small amounts of dirt ingested by them. The vitamin is then stored in their flesh. We can gain our needs in the same way, but in washing away all the chemical insecticide and fertilizers on produce, we also wash away the B12. Safer to find a (vegan-sourced) supplement.) Where Diet for a New America focussed on the "why" of veganism, Becoming Vegan takes you through the 'how'. And it's dead easy, so long as you're more adventurous than your fries-and-Diet-Coke vegan. Unfortunately, many such people quickly become ex-vegan, adding their voice to the discordant choir that insists healthy veganism is an impossibility. Hmm. Didn't they used to say that about _____? (This time, you can fill in the blank yourself.)