The Benefits of Veganism
It is almost impossible to deny that going vegan has fast become a highly fashionable and ethically commendable lifestyle trend, despite its former peripheral status as an eating preference (perhaps due to lack of knowledge surrounding veganism’s power). Although the benefits of adopting such a diet will vary between individuals, there are several science-based health advantages of going vegan which should certainly be considered: you may even be persuaded that veganism might just be the way – in anticipation of the summer months – to accelerate your progress toward a healthier and stronger mind and physique!
- A vegan diet is more nutrient dense:
Eliminating animal products from one’s daily eats will naturally result in greater consumption of whole foods such as fruits, vegetables, beans and nuts. These foods are particularly beneficial due to their high levels of potassium, antioxidants, magnesium, iron and vitamins A, C and E; all of which contribute to general functioning and a reduction in fatigue or lethargy.
- A vegan diet as an aid to weight loss:
Veganism has consistently proved to be both an enjoyable and effective method to lose weight, and despite much speculation, can boost muscle growth. Studies have demonstrated that vegan diets are more successful in comparison to calorie-restricted diets, even when the vegans ate till full at mealtimes; one study even showed that those who followed a vegan diet consistently had a lower BMI than non-vegans. Therefore, if you are wishing to shed some pounds without the pressure of calorie counting, veganism may provide a constructive shortcut.
- Veganism can help blood sugar control:
Going vegan may mitigate some risk factors for diabetics (type 2), help reverse a pre-diabetic condition, or afford peace of mind to anyone concerned about their blood sugar fluctuations – such a chemical imbalance wreaks havoc on our mood and contributes to work-hampering brain fog. Indeed, assessments of vegans regularly report improved insulin sensitivity, general lower blood sugar and most excitingly, a 50-78% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. If blood sugar control is a key concern, going vegan could provide some relief.
- Possible cancer protection:
In essence, veganism involves greater consumption of fruits, vegetables and legumes (foods known to offer protection against free-radical damage, oxidation and provide gut-strengthening fibre), whilst eradicating processed, unnatural and overcooked animal-based foods. Many diseases, ranging from breast to colon cancer, can be prevented through adopting vegan principles; as confirmed by a review of 96 studies which found vegans have a 15% reduced risk of dying from cancer. Therefore, in terms of maintaining one’s vitality and longevity, it seems vegans may have the upper hand!
- A clearer moral conscience:
Knowing that your joy from eating does not come at the expense of an animal may improve mood and help you appreciate both the environment and the importance of ethical living. It is unsurprising that vegans often score higher on mood profiles/tests, given that their lifestyle is certainly sustainable and their moral conscience free from concerns regarding the treatment of the animal they would formerly consume. If not for the physical health benefits, going vegan could simply be a method to ethically engage with nature and begin a journey of increased environmental awareness.