EVIDENCE BASED NUTRITION

Written by Henry Lau 
Qualified Nutritionist and ISAK Accredited Anthropometrist

EVIDENCE BASED NUTRITION

Written by Henry Lau 
Qualified Nutritionist and ISAK Accredited Anthropometrist

Plant Base, Vegetarian & Vegan: How they differ & Which to choose.

Is is widely accepted that we should be eating more vegetables, fruits other health plant derived foods.

The problem is, choosing between a plant based, vegetarian and vegan diet can be tricky.

It depends on your lifestyle, your food choices and health goals. This article will help you decide which diet is best for you.

What Is A Plant Based Diet?

A plant based diet is a type of diet that consists predominantly of whole foods derived from plants.

Limited amounts of meat or meat-based products are allowed but fish and seafood is often the preferred choice.

Animal based products such as eggs and milk, including milk based products, are also allowed but is consumed at a moderate amount.

Starchy carbohydrates make up the bulk of the diet and milk in your coffee is recommended.

A vegan diet is a type of diet that consist of food only derived from plants. Unlike a plant based diet, animal or animal based products including fish, eggs or milk are not allowed.

Summary:

Plant based diets consist predominantly of whole foods derived from plants with limited quantities of meat and animal derived products.

Plant Base, Vegetarian & Vegan: Differences In Health Benefits

It is widely accepted that reducing meat intake, particularly red meat, having more plant based foods and fish is more beneficial for health. Here we discuss whether you should completely eliminate all meat and animal products or just reduce the quantity.

Firstly, vegetarian diets seem to confer many health benefits. It’s been shown to lower your blood pressure , your “bad” LDL and total cholesterol, and it may reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease by 10%.

Furthermore, you exclude red and processed meat, which have been linked to higher risk of cardiovascular disease and colorectal cancer.

However, excluding meat completely from the diet has it’s disadvantages. In fact, vegetarian diets have been found to decrease HDL (the “good cholesterol”) which is thought to be protective of heart disease. This is most likely due from excluding foods high in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids such as salmon.

Quite interestingly, recent studies looking at ischaemic heart disease (IHD) found that people who occasionally ate meat, ate fish but not meat, consumed eggs & dairy but no meat, and vegans had a 20%, 34%, 34% and 26% decrease in risk of IHD when compared to frequent meat eaters.

Quite interestingly, in recent studies looking at ischaemic heart disease (IHD), it was found that people who occasionally ate meat, or are fish but not meat, or at eggs & dairy only had a 20%, 34% & 34% decrease in risk of IHD, respectively. Vegan diets decreased risk by 26%.

These studies suggests that limiting meat and increasing plant base foods can be protective of health (particularly cardiovascular disease), but completely eliminating all meat and animal based products may actually be less protective for health.

Summary

Decreasing the consumption of meat, particularly red meat, and increasing the consumption of fish and plant derived foods have a protective effect on cardiovascular disease.

Completely eliminating all meat and animal derived food products does not add further benefits and maybe inferior to just reducing meat intake.

The Disadvantages Of Going Plant Based

The key differences between a plant based, vegetarian and a vegan diet is that you limit different food groups to a different extent.
 
This potentially means that you are limiting key vitamins, minerals and nutrients.
The two most common nutrients that omnivores lack their diets (which includes a plant based diet) is iron and folate.
Majority of the iron we absorb comes from red meat and yet a low iron status still affects 2 billion people world wide.
It is even more difficult for a vegetarian and a vegan to consume adequate amounts.
Vegetarians and vegans will also struggle with getting enough health fats, particularly long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (the ones we actually want, as these are mainly from oily fish.
 
If you completely eliminate all animal and animal derived foods then you are going to struggle to consume enough key nutrients that are difficult to find in just plant derived foods.
 
These include: riboflavin, vitamin B12, vitamin A, and vitamin D.
 

Summary

To have a balance diet, it is recommended you consume foods from meat, fish, animal and plant derived foods.

If you eliminate a certain food group, then you could run the risk of having a deficiency.

The Bottom Line

Plant based diets consist predominantly of whole foods derived from plants with limited quantities of meat and animal derived products.

Vegetarian diets completely eliminate all meat but allow eggs and dairy. Whereas, vegan diets eliminate all meat and animal derived foods.

Eliminating key food groups could lead to less than optimal levels of vitamins, minerals and trace elements.

DISCOVER WHAT FOOD IS RIGHT FOR YOU

A custom built quiz designed to help you find out what foods you should be eating.

Discover What Food Is Right For You With This Simple Quiz

Everyone is different…

… we’re different in height, weight, gender, ethnicity, body shape, size, food preference, in our situation, goals, motivation, time & food cravings.

There is an endless amount of different types of diets and it makes it very difficult to decide what is right for you.

That’s why I developed this simple 30 Second Quiz, designed to help you discover EXACTLY what food is right for you…

… and the best part is, you can get started right here, right now.

Take The Free Quiz Here

Henry Lau – Qualified Nutritionist

How To Discover What Food Is Right For You

Everyone is different…

… we’re different in height, weight, gender, ethnicity, body shape, size, food preference, in our situation, goals, motivation, time & food cravings.

There is an endless amount of different types of diets and it makes it very difficult to decide what is right for you.

That’s why I developed this simple 30 Second Quiz, designed to help you discover EXACTLY what food is right for you…

… and the best part is, you can get started right here, right now.

Take The Free Quiz

[ EVIDENCE BASED ] Discover What Food Is Right For You With This Simple 30 Second Quiz

Henry Lau – Qualified Nutritionist

Discover What Food Is Right For You

Everyone is different…

… we’re different in height, weight, gender, ethnicity, body shape, size, food preference, in our situation, goals, motivation, time & food cravings.

There is an endless amount of different types of diets and it makes it very difficult to decide what is right for you.

That’s why I developed this simple 30 Second Quiz, designed to help you discover EXACTLY what food is right for you…

… and the best part is, you can get started right here, right now.

Take The Free Quiz

[ EVIDENCE BASED ] Discover What Food Is Right For You With This Simple Quiz

Read Next:

The Ultmate 2020 Guide To A Plant Based Diet

The Ultmate 2020 Guide To A Plant Based Diet

Best Way To Follow A Plant Based Diet: How to start.

Best Way To Follow A Plant Based Diet: How to start.