There has never been an easier time to adapt to a vegan diet. However, what is the true cost
In the age of smart phones and Doordash, 2022 this is truly the age of convenience.
It has become such an easily obtainable commodity, that gone are the days of walking uphill 2 miles in the
snow for a can of beans, and here to stay are the days of plant-based chick n’ nuggets.
One must ask themselves however, what is the real cost of convenience? A vegan lifestyle, historically has been known as a healthy one, but with the changes in how we get our food, are we really living an authentic and healthy life?
Of course, at the center of the Vegan movement is one crucial requirement: living cruelty free towards all animals no matter how small.
However, are we sacrificing our own rights to a cruelty free life my putting junk into our bodies. Are fast and “tasty” snacks worth it?
Should our focus be on having a healthy body and digestive system, instead of consuming food that comes quick and easy?
How to choose Healthier Vegan Options
A quick google search for “healthy vegan food” will yield hundreds of pages of results. In the image bar
you will see more photos of brightly colored snacks, and less photos of vegetables, gardens, and home
Finding Healthy Vegan Recipes On Instagram
You can also find tons of healthy vegan recipes on Instagram by simply entering #veganhealth related hashtags in the search field, example #healthyveganrecipes. #healthyveganmeals
Even local vegan restaurants near you might have menus that are centered on mock
meals, that look and taste like meat.
Now, not to take away from the deliciousness of a good bowl of vegan mac n cheese, or the importance of the accessibility that these dishes have had on the vegan movement.
Afterall, it certainly makes the change less daunting. However, we must be honest: How many times a
week are we indulging in these processed foods? Once a week? Twice a week? Everyday? Reading the
label of products will tell you exactly what is in these foods.
What kind of havoc are these food-like ingredients having on our digestive system? More importantly, these types of foods often lack key nutrients.
They are calorie dense and nutrient poor. This leads to a whole host of health problems as a vegan.
This is not only bad for us as individuals but bad for the Vegan community as a whole because it makes the lifestyle less sustainable, and only adds to the stereotype that it’s impossible to be healthy and live a lifestyle free from animal products
Junk Food Vegan
You might have heard the term “junk food vegan” thrown around lately. Or maybe you’ve heard
someone say, “I am vegan for the animals, not my health.” Let’s dive into what that means: A junk food
vegan consumes highly proceeded food on a regular basis.
Processed, food-like, convenient dishes may make up the bulk of their calories. They are high in sodium, un-healthy fats, and processed sugar. They offer more risk of addiction due to the flood of dopamine they provide, than the fuel your body needs.
This creates a feedback loop of requiring more processed food calories to keep you going because they
are low in nutrition, while your brain asks for more and more salty, sweet, fatty treats for that sweet
sweet dopamine fix.
Vegan Junk Food Can Harm Your Health
This kind of junk food vegan diet is not sustainable, and over the course of weeks or months, will
start to negatively impact your digestive system and overall health.
High fiber foods such as: beans, avocados, fresh fruit, and vegetables offer natural support to a healthy digestive system.
Without eating these foods that are naturally occurring in fiber, we may be tempted to supplement with over-the counter fiber products. Considering eating a whole food, vegan diet, would naturally be full of fiber, it seems a little counter intuitive to add the extra expense of a fiber supplement.
In addition to a healthy digestive system, lack of the necessary nutrients like iron, vitamin C, and
calcium will lead to a whole host of health problems.
These nutrients are not found in these highly processed foods, and if they are they are often fortified, and not as easily used by your body as they would be from foods where they were naturally occurring.
Now, of course indulging in the occasional processed snack or meal is not going to cause any long-term harm to your body. However, a healthy vegan with a happy head and a happy tummy must eat a whole food diet. A healthy vegan is a happy vegan!