Six Reasons Why You Should Go Vegan

Weight Loss:
Have you tried losing weight on the Paleo Diet and had little success? Many vegans experience a healthy amount of weight loss because of no longer eating heavy meat diets. With healthy proteins like tempeh, seitan, teff and quinoa out there, you have plenty of options to replace meat with. Tempeh will never taste the same as a Big Mac, but there are ways to experiment with these healthy substitutes. There are even vegan weightlifters out there.  so you don’t have to worry about losing muscle mass. Just eat plenty of protein and healthy veggies and stay away from too many carbs.

Protect Against Cancer:
National Cancer Institute found that vegans have significantly lower rates of cancer than both meat-eaters and vegetarians. Vegan women, for example, had 34% lower rates of female-specific cancers like breast, cervical and ovarian cancers compared to a group of healthy omnivores.
How is this possible? Well, according to blood samples from meat-eating, vegetarian and vegan women, women on plant-based diets were found to suppress the development of a growth hormone called IGF-1. Animal protein has been found to increase the presence of IGF-1 in our bodies and this hormone has been linked to cancer. Within weeks of starting a plant-based diet, levels of IGF-1 in the bloodstream dramatically decrease.

Lower Risk of Heart Disease:
In addition to the positive benefits vegan diets offer against cancer, they also help protect against heart disease. In a 2014 study from the Journal of Family Practice, 198 people with documented cardiovascular disease were asked to stick to a strictly plant-based, oil-free diet. 177 people stuck to the diet for four years and of those people, only one person had a stroke that was deemed a recurrence of the disease. In contrast, 13 of the 21 people who didn’t stick to the diet experienced a cardiovascular event. This shows that maintaining a plant-based diet. can have a huge impact in decreasing your chance of getting heart disease.

Get More Nutrients:
If you follow a vegan diet, it’s likely you will end up eating a variety of different foods. For example, by following a whole-foods vegan diet, you will eat replacements like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, peas, nuts and seeds. This will give you a higher daily intake of fiber, antioxidants, magnesium, folate and vitamins A, C and E. However, not all vegan diets are created equal. It’s important to avoid replacing meat with bread and vegan sugary foods. Just because it’s vegan doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Soda and French fries are vegan after all! Poorly planned vegan diets can result in insufficient amounts of vitamins. Instead, focus on eating a variety of healthy foods and you will be much better for it.

More Energy:
Animal products are very hard to digest which is why you may feel lethargic after eating a big meat-based meal. Plant-based foods contain energizing properties and are much easier to digest. This gives you more energy during the day. Make sure to control your portion sizes though because if you are too full this can tire you out as well.

Vegan Diet Can Improve Your Skin:
Vegans tend to eat more fruits and vegetables than their carnivorous counterparts—which is great news for their skin! Plant-based diets are typically low in fat and avoid the pore-clogging saturated fats found in animal products. Fruits and vegetables are high in essential vitamins and antioxidants, which are the building blocks for radiant skin. Plus, the fiber from produce and whole grains crank up that healthy glow by flushing out toxins.

Vitamins C and E, commonly found in healthy vegan meals, are powerful antioxidants that neutralize skin-damaging free radicals and help fight wrinkles and brown spots, promoting an overall youthful appearance. Nuts and seeds are prime sources for vitamin E, and one can reap the rewards by munching on walnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, and ground flax seeds. Peanut butter is an easy way to pack a one-two nutritional punch of vitamin E and protein. And if you’re looking for a sweeter way to enjoy some antioxidants, have a handful of berries.

According to a recent article in Health magazine, the zinc found in beans combats Acne and decreases inflammation, preventing redness and pimples. Vegan protein sources (like beans, nuts, and tofu) are championed, since dairy products are often a contributing factor to acne. Healthy unsaturated fats (definitely not the saturated kind found in meat) found in avocados and olive oil provide fatty acids that keep skin hydrated and cell membranes strong and supple. Try cooking your veggies in a small amount of olive oil or make a salad dressing using olive oil, flax oil, or another unsaturated oil.

Ramping up one’s intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and beans—while passing on the dairy products and meat—is a recipe for clear and radiant skin that glows from the inside out.>As you can see, vegan diets have great benefits. Switching to a vegan diet, or just incorporating more vegetables and less meat in your diet, can help you live a much healthier lifestyle.