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The myths about meat versus plant based diets

Ōtepoti – While a vegan diet has become one of the hottest trends there are still loads of myths about meat and plants based diets.

Proteins of vegetables such as legumes, whole grains and nuts have trace elements that are associated with a greater quantity and quality of life in the long term.

Those people patients who follow a plant-based diet with adequate vitamin B12 supplementation have more adequate levels of vitamin B12 than those who eat meat.

Vitamin D is a vitamin that is synthesised in the skin through sun exposure. Nowadays, it is frequently avoided due to its adverse effects on the skin, so physicians generally advise taking an oral supplement in times of low sun exposure regardless of diet.

In the sunny months, slight sun exposure is enough to reach adequate levels of vitamin D.

The only essential molecule of omega three is alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). The human body is capable of synthesising the rest of omega three fatty acids, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) from ALA. There are abundant amounts of ALA in plant-based products such as flax seeds or walnuts.

Iron deficiency is common throughout the world, but it has never been shown that people who follow a plant-based diet have a higher prevalence of iron deficiency than people with omnivorous diets.

Women generally need 18mg a day of iron while men need about 12-15mg: a large roast potato contains about as much iron as 90 grams of chicken meat. Three cups of spinach contains about 18 mg of iron, which is more than a 240 gram steak, and a single cup of cooked soybeans contains between eight and nine mg of iron.

Green leafy vegetables, cruciferous vegetables such as bok choy and broccoli, and nuts are the main sources of calcium in a plant-based diet.

A serving of whole cow’s milk contains approximately 125mg of calcium, while serving of almond milk contains about 200mg. A serving of spinach contains around 145mg of calcium.

Dietitians say vegan eating is healthy and nutritionally adequate for elite athletes. Emerging scientific evidence shows clear advantages in blood flow, cardiac morphology and function.

Regarding levels of testosterone, no differences have been observed between people with plant-based diets and omnivores. Emerging evidence suggests that a higher consumption of whole plant foods could be associated with a lower prevalence of impotence problems.

A 100 percent vegetable diet is used as a treatment for inflammatory intestinal diseases. The intestine is healthier the greater variety of plants we consume.

Both the soluble and insoluble fibre present in plant foods show a crucial role in the proper functioning of intestinal microbiota.

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