Nedahl Stelio writes that adopting a plant-based diet doesn’t necessarily mean sacrificing flavour nor interest
“The big one not to miss out on is vitamin B12,” says Professor Flood. “If you’re eating dairy and eggs, you’re more likely to be able to get adequate amounts, but as a vegan it’s harder unless you go for foods that are B12 fortified like some soy products. Look to see if it has B12 in the ingredient listing.” Prolonged deficiency of vitamin B12 can cause cognitive decline.
IRON AND ZINC
“These are both found in higher amounts in meat products. Eat a range of plant-based sources like tofu, legumes, wholegrains, wheatgerm, nuts and seeds and even sourdough bread,” says Professor Flood.
OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS
Found in oily fish, nuts (especially walnuts) and flaxseed, among other foods, these are credited with all manner of health benefits, including reducing the risk of heart disease and promoting brain health. Professor Flood notes that recent research points to the body adapting to lower amounts of things such as zinc, iron and omega-3 fatty acids. “As you eat less meat, the body begins to draw more of those nutrients out of the foods you are eating,” she says. “So it might not be as important to eat kilos of spinach to get your nutrients as we first thought.”