What Are the Benefits of Being a Vegan?

When veganism was first to become a common way to eat, many people believed it was just for individuals who were animal activist that followed this strict diet. Now, however, many people are realizing the benefits from eating a plant-based diet. A vegan lifestyle isn't just about animal cruelty; it also has a long list of health benefits for those who adopt this type of lifestyle. While it can take some effort and self-discipline to stick with a vegan diet, a number of benefits might motivate you to make the effort to make the switch.

What Are the Benefits of Veganism?

1. Weight loss

Those who are having difficulty losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight can benefit from a vegan diet. Following a vegan diet can result in a lower level of saturated fats being consumed and more vitamin and nutrient dense foods being consumed. Individuals who followed a vegan diet are more likely to lose weight and keep it off than they would by following a caloric restricted diet.

2. Hormonal balance

A diet rich in animal fats can increase the levels of estrogen and other hormones in the body. These hormones have a direct effect on mood, bodily function, hunger control, and emotions. An increase in some of these hormones can result in overeating and mood disorders. A vegan diet, which is primarily plant-based, keeps the hormones in the body balanced and better controlled.

3. Better skin

If you suffer from any skin issues like acne, then switching to a vegan diet can give you the healthy skin you dream about. Consuming dairy or foods that have a high glycemic level can result in poor skin. Vegan diets eliminate these types of foods, which can result in clear and younger looking skin.

4. Improve cardiovascular health

A diet rich in whole grains and nuts, like that of a vegan diet, can have positive effects on your cardiovascular health. A vegan diet can reduce your risk of various heart disease as well as type 2 diabetes. So the benefits of veganism include prevention of strokes and heart attack.

5. Reduce the risk of cancer

Prostate cancer, colon cancer, and breast cancer are all common among individual who eat an animal food rich diet. Following a vegan diet can help reduce the risk of these cancers and many others. Not only can you prevent these cancers from occurring, but if you already have a cancer diagnosis, switching to a vegan diet can increase your chances of stopping the progress or regrowth of cancer cells.

6. Reduce arthritis pain

Consuming a diet that consists of whole raw foods can help reduce the effect of arthritis pains. Those who suffer from arthritis, especially rheumatoid arthritis, can see a reduction in joint stiffness, swelling, and pain when they switch to a vegan diet.

7. Increase energy

When you fuel your body with the proper vitamins, nutrients, and minerals, you will benefit greatly by having more energy. Those who follow a vegan diet have better overall health and they feel less fatigued and pain. This is because animal products can be more difficult to digest causing you to use more energy just to process the food you eat. Vegan diets eliminate animal foods, which results in less energy being wasted on the digestive process.

8. Improve sleep

A vegan diet can help you sleep better. Many of the foods you consume on a vegan diet, like nuts and fruits, increase the production of melatonin in the body which helps the body fall asleep. Another one of the benefits of veganism is that you consume more vitamin B6, potassium and magnesium-rich foods, which also help the body and mind relax, making sleep easier.

However, There Are Some Risks of Veganism

While eating a plant-based diet can be highly beneficial, there are also some risks to eating a vegan diet. You may not be getting enough of certain vitamins or minerals when eating vegan which you will want to be aware of, so you can find alternative ways to get the recommended amount.

  • Vitamin B12 is used to strengthen and protect the red blood cells in the body as well as the nerves. You can get the proper amount of vitamin b12 on a vegan diet by consuming more fortified plant foods like seaweed or cereals.
  • Iron is necessary so the body can absorb the proper amount of oxygen into the blood. Increase the amount of dark leafy greens and dried beans to ensure you get enough iron into your diet.
  • Calcium is often consumed through various dairy products, but veganism eliminates dairy from their diet. Calcium is needed to maintain proper bone health, so it is vital to consume the appropriate amount. Ways to consume enough calcium for vegans include eating tofu, green leafy vegetables, and tahini.
  • Vitamin D not only helps protect against cancers, it is also necessary to maintain mental health. The best way to get more vitamin D is to spend more time outdoors, but you can also include vitamin D fortified foods into your diet.
  • Foods rich in omega 3-fatty acids help promote improved cardiovascular health but are often found in many wild caught fish. On a vegan diet, you can consume omega-3 fatty acids from soy products, flaxseed, walnuts and canola oil.
  • Not getting enough zinc from a vegan diet can result in hair loss, immunological problem and other health conditions, regardless of many benefits of veganism. In order to get enough zinc while eating vegan, eat more whole grains, soy products, and legumes.