A vegetarian lifestyle or vegan lifestyle can be super healthy (and mindful), provided you’re meeting all your nutritional requirements. All it takes is a bit of planning, and lots of variety. Here are the things to look out for:
- High quality protein
While plant foods can sometimes lack amino acids, I love boosting a meal’s heart-loving nutrients with a variety of legumes, tofu, soy milk, nuts/seeds, eggs and dairy. Vegan diets are a little more tricky and will take some extra careful meal and snack planning to make sure you’re not missing out on essential protein sources.
There’s actually a lot of iron found in plant foods! Only thing is, it can be difficult for the body to absorb on its own. Because of this, many vegetarians take iron supplements, especially if you avoid animal-based foods all together.
I’ve never met a dancer who doesn’t need strong bones! Calcium plays a vital role in all diets, so if you don’t include any dairy products your lifestyle, please talk to your doctor about taking a calcium supplement. We need these bones for life!
- Omega-3 fatty acids
Not a fish fan? Just keep in mind that you might not be getting enough omega-3 in you diet. Don’t worry, there’s no shortage of omega-3 supplements around. Even a little in flaxseed oil or algae oil can work wonders for happy heart and brain functioning.
- Vitamin B12
A very important one for moods and managing stress in the body! Vitamin B12 is only found in animal products so vegans will need to take a Vitamin B12 supplement. For a more detailed review of your vegetarian diet and supplements, discuss with an accredited practising dietitian.