Are you kidding me?
If you adopt a vegan-eating lifestyle, curious non-vegans will ask you two questions:
1. How do you know you’re getting enough protein?
2. Are you sure you’re getting enough vitamins and minerals?
To answer both questions to my non-vegan friends: How do you know you’re getting enough protein and how do you know you’re getting enough vitamins and minerals? Do you have some magical chart that you look at or just because you eat meat and cheese does that automatically mean you’re getting enough vitamins and minerals?
Studies have shown that the Standard American Diet (and yes the acronym spells out SAD) is too high in protein and lacking in vitamins and minerals.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s always the vegan that is the exception to the rule. Just because you eat a vegan diet doesn’t mean you’re eating a healthier diet. Replacing meat and dairy with French fries and potato chips doesn’t mean you’re eating a plant-strong diet.
I just wanted to clear the air because I get asked these questions a lot. So if you ask me these questions, I’m going to fire them right back to you.
If you’re really worried about my health, here’s some of what I eat:
1. Vegetables: kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, living pea tendrils, dandelion greens, zucchini, peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, fresh herbs, broccoli, cauliflower, avocados just to name a few.
2. Fruits: bananas, mangoes, pears, apples, watermelon, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, pineapple, papaya, oranges, dates and tangerines for a few examples.
3. Nuts: raw Brazil, macadamia, and almonds are what I’m lovin’ right now!
4. Plant milks are usually coconut or almond milk.
5. Sadly the “seeds” I eat usually come in a processed form like hemp seed and chocolate protein powder (OMG is that good)–all organic from Whole Foods. It goes great in smoothies. I also put flax seed oil on my salads. I’m going to be trying some chia seeds soon once I buy my juicer. I’ve had chia seeds in some bottled vegan fruit drinks from Whole Foods and they give the drink a little character and extra texture.
So as you can see I eat no meat, dairy, eggs, cheese or fish but look at all of the awesome stuff left over! I really love fresh, all organic and simple foods. When someone asks me “Hey what’s in your food” I want to be able to say words I can pronounce and actually know what the food is.
I’m no saint though. I have my cravings like anyone else. I love chocolate especially around certain times of the month. So I’ll get an organic vegan chocolate bar from Whole Foods or even Wiseway if I’m in a pinch and need something to gnaw on.
Plant foods have complete proteins and plenty of vitamins and minerals. I don’t have a magical chart that I look at to make sure I’m getting the right amount. I just know that by eating organic, minimally processed foods that I’m doing my body a lot of good. You have to be the judge of what’s right for you and your body.
I’m guessing you don’t have a magical vitamin and protein chart either so please stop asking me if I have one. I’ve educated you on what vegans eat. I’d say we eat plenty of protein, vitamins and minerals without being overloaded.
I hope you eat what makes you feel good and satisfied and I’ll continue to do the same.