Concerns about Becoming a Vegan

Vegan diets, when planned properly, are healthy and can even lower the risk of certain diseases, according to the American Dietetic Association. They can be appropriate for individuals in all stages of life, including infancy, childhood, pregnancy and lactation. It is important to note, however, that there is a risk of being deficient in certain nutrients if the vegan diet is not carefully planned. People who adhere to strict vegan diets are at risk for less than adequate intakes of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, calcium, zinc, iodine and vitamins D and B-12.

Because animal foods such as meat, dairy, eggs, fish and fowl are among the best sources of protein, vegans can sometimes lack sufficient protein in their diets. The American Dietetic Association, however, believes that protein requirements can be met if a variety of plant proteins are consumed, such as peas, beans, ect.

Though vegan diets can lack sufficient amounts of omega-3 due to the restriction of omega-3-rich foods, including eggs, fish and other seafood. The omega-3 fatty acids found in animal sources can also be found in  plant foods rich in omega-3, such as flaxseed. Vegans can purchase soy milk and breakfast bars fortified with DHA, as well as DHA supplements. Sources containing DHA are sufficient for vegan diets.

Vitamin D is important for bone health, and low levels have been linked to reduced bone mass. Sunlight exposure is best source of vitamin D. Many people vegan or not lack vitamin D.  People who do not get regular sun exposure need to consume dietary vitamin D through either fortified foods or supplements, since vitamin D occurs naturally in very few foods. Vegan sources of vitamin D that are often fortified include soy milk, rice milk and orange juice.

Lack of vitamin B-12 is one of the biggest concerns with vegan diets, especially because vegan diets do not have it. Severe B-12 deficiencies can result in both anemia and dementia, notes Harvard Medical School. So, if you’re a vegan, be sure to consume B-12 fortified foods such as soy and rice beverages and breakfast cereals, or supplements.

In conclusion, a vegan diet, is like every other diet. It needs to be carefully planned out. We are not free to just eat whatever we please and be healthy. Vegan diets are and can be a successful way to have good lasting health.

TOO MUCH EXERCISE??

Yes, You can over exercise. Exercise can actually become an addiction, especially when we don’t listen to our bodies telling us it’s just too much. What’s strange is once exercise is in your blood, in your regular routine, you simply feel ‘off’ when you skip it. I know how moody and irritable I become when I don’t get my daily sweat session, and that’s a good thing if it gives you motivation to keep up with a consistent and balanced routine. The problem occurs when you lose the ‘balance’ part of the equation and your workouts start consuming too much of your time, interfering with your daily life, and/or your body is not adequately recovering, and you simply don’t know how to take a break.

Here are signs you maybe over-extending your self when exercising.

Your Workout Leaves you Exhausted vs. Energized
If you finish your workout feeling like you need a nap, rather than revitalized and ready to conquer the next thing, you are likely pushing it too hard and need to assess and scale back those workouts.

You Are Irritable and Moody
If little things are setting you off, and you can’t figure out why your fuse is short or your moods are so funky, this could be a sign that your body is worn down and fatigued bodies/minds have trouble getting through even the smaller things.

You’re Sleeping Too Much or Can’t Sleep!
Are you restless and unable to sleep through the night no matter how tired you feel? Or, does it not matter how much sleep you get — you still feel tired? Both of these can be caused by over-training. When you exercise too much, your body can interpret it as a stressor, sending out stress hormones like cortisol that makes sleeping difficult.

You Get Sick Frequently or Can’t Seem To Recover
When you over-exercise you break your body and immune system down, so you are more susceptible to getting sick, or it takes you longer to recover.

Sore for Days at a Time
Rather than bouncing back from a tough workout, your body is constantly aching or sore — warning, you need to step back and allow it to repair itself.

You Feel Unmotivated and/or ‘Blue’
Workouts now seem like an obstacle you ‘have to do’ — you are unmotivated, unexcited and it’s starting to affect other areas of your life.

Sometimes you just need to cut back on days or time that you workout.