Updated: May 11
Julie, our registered associate nutritionist, helps you to understand the importance of nutritional intake on a vegan diet.
Veganuary supported more than half a million people to try vegan during their campaign in 2021and more than 825 new vegan products and menus were launched for Veganuary 2021.
Does following a vegan diet interest you, but do you have concerns about whether you and your children are getting the correct nutrients in your diet to thrive? Following a vegan lifestyle can provide us with a variety of nutritious foods for supporting growth and development, lets take a closer look….
Firstly, whole food plant-based diets tend to be less energy-dense so cramming the high number of calories into a child’s diet can be a challenge. Additionally, there may be issues surrounding picky eaters and food refusal.
Secondly, there are many vegan junk foods on the market that are high in salt, sugar and saturated fats, so ensure you look at the traffic light labelling before buying.
Energy and Carbohydrates – young children are always on the move. Choose iron-rich foods such as dried fruit for snacks, nut butter on wholemeal toast, fortified breakfast cereals, berries or kiwi fruit and combine with foods high in vitamin C. A glass of their favourite juice at breakfast is ideal as well as enjoying a varied range of fruit and vegetables.
Protein – plants contain a wide variety of proteins; however, these are not as efficiently absorbed as animal protein so let’s look further… Protein support with muscle growth and repair, crucial; for healthy bone development as well as energy. Plant proteins, such as beans, peas and sweetcorn also contribute to your five a day as well as boosting fibre intake.
Vitamin B12 – some benefits of B12 are to support immunity, reduce tiredness, energy release & mood. Meat and dairy are prime sources, however, there is a range of fortified foods such as spreads, breakfast cereals, plant-based milk, yoghurts, marmite, or vegemite. Generally, it is advised to take a B12 supplement (Vegan society).
Omega 3 – essential for brain development, heart health, vision, and bone health. Great sources include nuts, seeds and rapeseed oil which contains around 10 times more omega 3 than olive oil!
Calcium without dairy – a lack of calcium can lead to weak bones and teeth. Look for fortified plant-based milk, yoghurt and cheese and did you know that calcium can sink to the bottom of the non-dairy drink, so ensure you shake the carton!!
If you would like to take part in this years Veganuary take a look here: Try Vegan With Us | Vegan Challenge | Veganuary
Why not book a free 15-minute discovery call with Julie today to talk about your individual requirements? About
Julie is an Associate Registered Nutritionist and believes in providing a personalised approach to her clients to help them reach their health and lifestyle goals. Julie has experience working with clients on a one to one basis to support digestive disorders, weight management and women’s health, in addition, Julie is a qualified chef and lecturer, and is able to support clients with their culinary skills, education and training.