In a world where not nearly enough people eat the right amount of veggies every day, it can be easy to think that a vegan diet is the key to healthy nutrition. However, even as a vegan, there are certain vitamins and minerals you either may not be able to gain through your diet or you won’t be able to gain enough to meet daily requirements. Here are seven supplements to consider on a vegan diet to help ensure you’re getting the proper nutrition every day.
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Vitamin B12 helps with many of your cellular processes. From creating DNA to red blood cells, it helps keep your body working the way it is supposed to.
The average adult needs 2.4 mcg of Vitamin B12 each and every day – a nutritional goal most people are able to meet. However, since Vitamin B12 is found most often in animal products such as meat and dairy, it may be difficult to reach daily nutritional requirements on a vegan diet.
In order to remedy this, you can consider a supplement, but you may also be able to add more fortified vegan foods into your diet to help bridge the gap.
Like many other vital nutrients, your body can’t produce or store zinc. This means that you’ll need to include the right amount in your diet every day.
Zinc is one of the key nutrients utilized in boosting your immune system. It can also aid in wound healing and preventing different diseases as you grow older.
Zinc deficiencies are rare since zinc can be found in a wide variety of foods, including: different meats, eggs, dairy products, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and certain vegetables. However, unfortunately for vegans, zinc found in non-animal sources is as readily absorbed. This means that supplements may be encouraged.
Iron is a mineral that helps control how oxygen travels and is stored within your body. It is a part of hemoglobin, which carries oxygen to your lungs, and helps your muscles store oxygen for usage.
Iron deficiency, known as anemia, is a common problem, especially in young children and people who are pregnant or have periods. However, too much iron can also cause issues, so it’s important to speak to a doctor for guidance before taking any supplements.
While iron is found greatly in animal products like different types of meat, it can also be found in vegan-friendly options like spinach, legumes, pumpkin seeds, quinoa, broccoli, tofu, and dark chocolate.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3s are a variety of nutrients that help make up the structure of every cell in your body. However, two crucial ones, are primarily found only a limited variety fish.
While other Omega-3s can be found in vegan sources, because these two crucial ones cannot, supplements may be something important to consider when pursuing a vegan diet.
Calcium is the mineral behind the composition of your bones. When you enter calcium deficiency, known as hypocalcemia, it can cause your bones and teeth to weaken. While this is often caused by a Vitamin D deficiency, it can also be caused when there is not enough calcium intake in your diet.
Calcium is most often found in dairy products. However, it can also be found in dark leafy greens and fortified foods.
Hypercalcemia is also a dangerous condition that can be caused by too much calcium. You should speak to a medical professional before adding calcium supplements into your daily routine.
When you first think of protein, your mind probably wanders to different types of meat. However, protein can also be found in a vegan diet through seitan, tofu, lentils, hemp seed, green peas, and soy beans.
While there are protein options available for those on a vegan diet, it may be best to consider supplements, especially if you need a higher amount of protein than average.
Vitamin B2, also known as Riboflavin, is one of the eight B vitamins – like B12 – that are required in a healthy diet. B2 helps your body break down food and absorb nutrients to make sure you get the most out of every meal.
Vitamin B2 is found most often in dairy and meat but can also be found in spinach, almonds, and fortified foods like cereal.
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