November 16, 2020
by: Kimberly Deaño
Have you ever thought of trying this plant-based kind of diet or even tried it? Or maybe you know someone who religiously follows eating plants as a lifestyle?
A vegetarian diet or simply known as “vegan” diet is a plant-based diet in which people only eat plants such as vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, rice, pasta, vegetable oils, dairy alternatives like coconut milk or soymilk, and any types of food that are made from plants. This means that people who are people do not eat meats like beef and pork, poultry, fish or seafood, eggs, cheese, mayonnaise, honey, or even butter. Going vegan has been a trend since in November 1944 by Donald Watson. While some vegetarians still eat dairy and eggs, he created the word vegan for the people who did not.
As we all know, plants are nutritious- especially fruits and vegetables. Meaning, this meatless lifestyle is really healthy because of nutritional facts without eating meats, poultry, or seafood. But, is a vegan diet really a healthy option over a diet with meat?
Most of the population are meat eaters or omnivores, however, certain people prefer to go vegan. Why? The reason is that while eating healthy edible plants, they also wanted to save animals from being slaughtered. The thought of killing animals for a feast turns their stomach. Can we judge them? Not really. Everybody has their own preference for what they like to consume, especially when we have our own reason. Right?
Plant-only diets have a lower risk of diseases as study shows. Due to the conscious intake of plants, vegan people avoid eating processed foods. A high intake of processed foods leads to certain types of illnesses. But it doesn’t mean that meat-eaters are prone to these because they eat meat, they are prone to diseases because of the high concentration and craving for processed foods.
Going back, what are its impact for athletes? Many athletes promote going healthy and vegan diet such as Alex Morgan, Chris Paul, and Lewis Hamilton. Being an omnivore from the very start and then going vegan suddenly is not really a good way. Getting out of your comfort zone is not easy. The struggle of choosing plants-only over plants and meat is unimaginable. However, the determination to do so takes courage and the goal you wanted.
Many or most of the athletes claim to recover really fast despite the hard day training or even injuries. During workouts or competitions, the clarity of their mind is overwhelming, and that they can focus on the game more efficiently and think of tactics faster. It doesn’t only affect their mentality and health but also their body as they were fitter and happy with the result.
Though this plant-only diet plan seems to be healthy and animal friendly, a study also shows that vegans tend to be at risk for Vitamin B-12 deficiency, lack of folate, omega-3 fatty acids, and calcium. Though plants have these nutrients, they still lack what our body needs, especially Vitamin B-12. Also, plants like vegetables and fruits nowadays are getting expensive as time passes by.
Well, well, well…what are your thoughts? Should you think again of eating plants-only or continue being an omnivore? The decision is yours really. It’s your body and you know what it needs and wants. Go on with your guts. Certain types of diets are there for you with factors according to your age, fitness, preference, and health. Make the right choice for yourself.