> Vegan and Vegetarian Diets No Longer Deemed Unsafe - The Food Safety Company Vegan and Vegetarian Diets No Longer Deemed Unsafe - The Food Safety Company
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    Thursday, 15 December 2016

    Vegan and Vegetarian Diets No Longer Deemed Unsafe

    The American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which has for years claimed that vegan diets may not be suitable for people of all stages of the human lifecycle, has now changed its mind. An official statement released last week claims that vegetarian and vegan diets ‘ are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, older adulthood, and for athletes.’

    Being the largest organisation of food and nutrition professionals in the world, its word carries an awful lot of weight when it comes to headlines in the mainstream media relating to food safety and dietary advice; and, indeed, public opinions on such matters.

    The report goes on to claim not only that ‘plant-based diets are more environmentally sustainable than diets rich in animal products because they use fewer natural resources and are associated with much less environmental damage,’ but also that ‘vegetarians and vegans are at reduced risk of certain health conditions, including ischemic heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, certain types of cancer, and obesity.’

    As pro-vegan website Plant Based News claims, ‘This is a big deal.’ The announcement, it says, could be seen as the academy finally ‘breaking down perhaps one of the last standing misconceptions of plant-based eating.’

    It’s worth remembering, however, that eating plant-based diets needs to be done correctly in order for it to be safe. The report itself claims that, in reaching its conclusions, the academy had to pre-suppose the vegan diets in question were ‘appropriately planned.’ Its introduction puts front-and-centre the fact that ‘the adoption of a vegetarian diet may cause a reduced intake of certain nutrients.’

    It is generally considered harder for vegans and vegetarians to stay healthy nowadays than it is for meat-eaters: mainly due to the fact that information regarding how to eat healthily as a vegan is not necessarily readily available to the public. The taking of supplements or consumption of fortified foods, for example, is often necessary to combat a deficiency of vitamin B-12. 

    Still, for those wishing to embark upon a vegan diet, there is a myriad of information available online (PBN recommends an article entitled ‘5 Must Eat Foods for Vegan Beginners’).  

    James Stannard

    James has a Bachelor’s degree in History and wrote his dissertation on beef and protest. His heroes list ranges from Adele to Noam Chomsky: inspirations he’ll be invoking next year when he begins a Master’s degree in London.
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