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Thread: American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada: Vegetarian/Vegan Diets

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    Ex-admin Korn's Avatar
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    Arrow American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada: Vegetarian/Vegan Diets

    http://www.lpda.pt/vegetarianismo/ada_dc_veg.pdf



    A little excerpt:


    This position paper reviews the current scientific data related to key nutrients for vegetarians, including protein, iron, zinc, calcium, vitamin D, riboflavin, vitamin B-12, vitamin A, n-3 fatty acids, and iodine.

    A vegetarian, including vegan, diet can meet current recommendations for all of these nutrients. In
    some cases, use of fortified foods or supplements can be helpful in meeting recommendations for individual nutrients.

    Well-planned vegan and other types of vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence.

    Vegetarian diets offer a number of nutritional benefits, including lower levels of saturated fat, cholesterol, and animal protein as well as higher levels of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium, folate, and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and phytochemicals. Vegetarians have been reported to have lower body mass indices than nonvegetarians, as well as lower rates of death from ischemic heart disease; vegetarians also show lower blood cholesterol levels; lower blood pressure; and lower rates of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and prostate and colon cancer.

    A few comments (already posted elsewhere):

    The comment about 'well planned' may be misleading - a vegan diet don't need more planning than a non-vegan diet. Changing from any type of diet to any other diet needs some thinking/planning/transitioning - that's not a vegan specific thing.

    Pregnant/lactating (vegan nor not) women need to make sure they the the nutrients they need. For non-vegans, folate needs extra attention. vegans (and lacto-vegetarians) need to pay extra attention to B12. It's not correct that the fetus/child will get what it needs anyway: if a nutrient is missing, it's missing.

    The following sentence is of course true (for both vegans and non-vegans), but - in my opinion - a little vague: "In some cases, use of fortified foods or supplements can be helpful in meeting recommendations for individual nutrients." Pregnant/lactating woman always should make sure they get enough nutrients they need, and ideally, they (and probably the father too) should do this before they get pregnant.

    People are often low or deficient in a number nutrients... and while an average vegan may need to worry about fewer nutrients than an average non-vegan, we also need to pay special attention to certain nutrients. Being vegan as such won't guarantee that we get all the nutrients we need. B12 needs special attention - for the reasons explained here (and in other threads).
    Last edited by Korn; Jan 27th, 2009 at 11:55 AM.
    I will not eat anything that walks, swims, flies, runs, skips, hops or crawls.

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