Jess says: It’s a new year and we are all full of good intentions of how we are going to change up our life for the year ahead; whether it’s a few small changes, or some much bigger ones that you have planned.
One trend that continues to grow is that of veganism and with it, Veganuary is everywhere right now. For those of you who don’t know, it’s the idea that we should all try and be vegan for the month of January.
But is it really such a great idea?
not all vegans are healthy eaters
While we personally believe that we should all be eating some (organic) meat and (responsibly sourced) fish, we understand that people have concerns about animal welfare and may decide that meat-eating isn’t for them. And similarly, others decide that any animal products at all are a step too far and decide to become vegan. And now is a great time to be a vegan! There are more vegan choices available in the supermarkets and restaurants than ever before.
But the problem is that it becomes similarly easy to slip into the same pitfalls as others, eating vegan ready meals, chips and other processed foods with little to no health benefits. Make no mistake, a plant-based junk food diet is easily achievable! Many processed vegan foods also contain high levels of sugar, salt and other additives, so always check the labels of what you are buying.
If veganism is something you are considering, a balanced diet is vital to maintaining good health and wellness. A good multivitamin, like One is also recommended (we believe that all vegetarians and vegans need a daily multivitamin) and you should also consider taking an algae-based omega 3 supplement high in DHA (essential for brain health). Iron is also something that is easy for vegans to become deficient in, so eating a lot of green leafy vegetables like spinach, beans and peas is important. All non-meat eaters should also take a daily vitamin B12 supplement and consider supplementing with L-carnitine, an essential nutrient for energy that is derived from meat.
how eco is a plant-based diet?
The other issue faced by vegans is the food miles involved in what they are eating – particularly in Veganuary! Avocado isn’t exactly locally grown and in season, so there are a lot of food miles to get such specialist ingredients here to the UK.
Traditionally, this was a time when people would rely on canned and preserved goods, meats and more warming soups and stews made with root vegetables. This is why, rather than Veganuary, we think it should be Vegtember – a time when there is an abundance of locally grown, seasonal produce available to all on our doorstep!
make this month local january
Rather than cutting out whole food groups in the name of good health, why not consider eating locally sourced, organic food instead? Let nature dictate what is available nearby, and instead, treat yourself (and your gut health) to a diverse range of locally grown and sourced organic foods, that can help to increase the diversity in your microbiome, while doing your bit for the planet by reducing your food miles. Not only will it taste better than pre-packaged vegan ready meals, but it will be a lot healthier and better for the planet too!