One of the biggest trends in health and fitness is becoming a veggie or vegan and while I respect a persons choice if they decide to become a veggie, its only fair they know all the facts first. Too often I’ve gotten into arguments with keyboard warriors spreading mis-information on this subject, this is what inspired me to write this blog.
1. Protein intake
I will give the most popular example of mis-information twisted to suit vegetarianism .
While this is true lets break this down.
So if you wanted a decent protein serving in a meal (30g) you would have to eat a little over 700g of broccoli unless your’e a gorilla you’ll struggle to each that much in one sitting. To get your protein serving from steak you would need only 160g. This is typical for most if not all meat vs veg therefore its a lot easier to get adequate protein in your daily diet if you eat meat.
2. Essential amino acids
Meat,fish and eggs are all complete proteins (contains all essential amino acids). These amino acids are not made by the body so we have to consume them for optimal health. Dairy, quinoa and soy bean are also a complete protein but regular consumption of dairy and soy can have negative effects (a subject for another day). Most vegetables are incomplete proteins you can still make up for this by combining your veggies but it takes a lot of studying to know what vegetable contains which essential amino.
3. Balancing carbohydrate
If your watching your carbs its pretty easy as a meat eater, portion of meat and veg = no or low carbs. As a veggie it can be a bit of a headache most of your sources will contain carbs, kidney beans and the like are relatively low but added up through the whole day its extremely difficult to get adequate protein on low carbs.
4. Natural source of vitamin D
Fatty fish is the only good dietary source of vit D. This vitamin has many benefits and is very important for overall health. If you live in a country with little sun you can pretty much guarantee you are deficient. Vit D is fat soluble so eating fatty fish kills two birds with one stone.
5. Vitamins and minerals all in one
Just like essential amino acids vegetables, seeds and nuts etc contain most vitamins and minerals your body needs but again you need to be a nutrition wizard to combine everything. Now lets look at red meat for example one piece will provide all of these, Vitamin B12, D, iron and zinc. Also you will consume non essential but very useful amino acid creatine.
In summary eating in meat in moderation with vegetables, nuts and seeds provide a wealth of benefits. Can we live without eating meat yes but can we live optimally ?
I hope you enjoyed this months blog I have tried to give a balanced view when presenting the facts rather than twisting them to suit my agenda. If you still decide to become vegetarian or vegan after reading this then I hope this also helps arm you with the knowledge needed to create a balanced diet. As always I welcome any questions.