A study has been published today highlighting the risk of a low level of omega-3 and B12 in the diet. There has been numerous attacks on veganism and its supposedly adverse effects on health, but this one is pretty amusing as it focuses on heart disease. Now, I’m no medical expert, but it’s pretty obvious that a diet that is low in saturated fats and cholesterol will result in less likelihood of heart disease. Obviously, there are other factors to take into account but diet is a key one, and I’m pretty confident that eating vegan will reduce my risks of heart disease in the future.
I’m not going to deny the importance of omega-3 and B12 in the diet, and I accept that B12 is fairly lacking in a vegan diet, but supplementation is easy and many vegan foods (such as most soy milk) are already fortified with the vitamin. As for omega-3, providing you’re being responsible as a vegan in what you eat, it is fairly easy to obtain the required daily dose. Flaxseed oil is a worthy supplement to take, just as many omnivores take cod liver oil. Presumably, oily fish is the most prevalent source of omega-3, but even when I ate meat I wasn’t keen on fish and not everyone is. So, this study would surely affect a large number of omnivores too, at least when it comes to omega-3? As a vegan, I use a range of different oils in cooking, omega-3 fortified margarines, and eat plenty of different nuts and seeds: all of which are high in omega oils.
The most amusing thing about this study comes from the conductor of the study, Duo Li – “Despite the fact that vegan diets exclude any foods from animal origin, in his recommendations Li outlined several sources of dietary omega-3 and vitamin B12 sourced from animals.” Thanks for the help there.
I know that the article highlights that vegans are generally at lower risk from heart disease, but constant attacks on deficiencies in vegan diets are beginning to drag me down. It’s so plain to see how many people die every day from excessive consumption on unhealthy, meat-based diets. Surely it’s time to start promoting veganism, and teaching people how to live healthily as a vegan, instead of consistently attacking it whilst the world’s health gets dragged down further and further.