VEGAN FOOD GROUPS

Vegetables Group

Do you have ANY idea just how good veggies are for you? They’re one of the most important foods you can eat. They are low-calorie and full of nutrients that your body needs daily.

Fortified Soymilk or Nut milk Group

This is the Vegan Calcium group. As long as you’re eating a well-balanced diet, it’s difficult to NOT get the calcium you need. There are many other foods that provide Calcium as well.

Beans, Bean Alternates, Nuts & Seeds Group

  Vegans get plenty of protein from other sources other than meat. Beans are just a common staple for Vegans to go to for protein. Many other foods have protein as well.

 

Whole Grains, Breads, Rice, Pasta, Cereals Group

You’ll find many good whole grains to consume. Just remember to find out hoow many servings of whole grains you should eat on a daily basis, a list of grains for you to discover, and how to select, clean, soak, cook and flavor your grains to perfection.

 

Fruit Group

Learn which fruits MUST BE organic and which can be conventional. Also learn how to select and clean your fruit, fruit “Flavor Matches”, and nutritional information too.

 

Omegas, B12 and D Group

There are some very important nutrients we need to be sure to supplement with and you can learn about these in my such as omega 3’s and B12. We need to make sure we don’t leave out any important vitamins and nutrients when becoming Vegan.

 

Water!

Glass of waterLast but certainly not least is WATER!

Vegan Almost Chicken Nuggets

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup oat oats
  • 2 can chickpeas/garbanzo beans
  • 1 cup bread crumbs or panko crumbs
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • Almond milk (to dip)

Directions:

1 Place chickpeas and oats in blender with a little water from the can and pulse

2 Remove from the blender and add seasonings

3 Mix and form balls or nuggets.

4 Dip nuggets into bread crumbs, then milk, then back into bread crumbs.

5 Continue until all nuggets are breaded.

6 Place nuggets in a heated skillet with 1/2 cup of vegetable oil

7 Cook until crispy on one side and then flip to make crispy on the other side.

8 Serve with ketchup or any type of sauce and a salad on the side.

9 Enjoy

 

 

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.

Vegan Delights

Ingredients

1 cup roasted coconut

1 cup pitted dates

1 tbs. olive oil

1 cup vegan chocolate

 

Directions:

  1. Pulse together dates, coconut and oil until a ball forms.
  2. Form cookies and use a straw to poke holes in the middle.
  3. Put the cookies on wax paper.
  4. Place in the freezer for 2hrs.
  5. Melt the chocolate after the 2hrs, and dip the cookies in it.
  6. Place on wax paper.
  7. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  8. Enjoy

Vegetarian and Vegan Kids

Your child has come to you and tells you they want to be a Vegetarian or a Vegan. What do you do? As a parent, we listen first.

  • Ask and let them explain why it is they want to change the diet
  • Talk about any concerns you may have as far as any vitamin deficiency they may incur and how they may have to take a multi-vitamin to substitute any missing nutrition (vitamins B12, iron, calcium, etc….)
  • Support them and let them know you appreciate their effort. Once a week cook a vegetarian/vegan meal for the entire family
  • Always have foods available for them to maintain their  food choices (fresh fruits and vegetables)
  • Allow them to find and cook their own vegetarian/vegan meals

Last but not least, always keep the doors of communication open and make sure you and them are educated about veganism and vegetarianism.