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  #1   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 04:31
Demi's Avatar
Demi Demi is offline
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Default 'I gave up veganism and my health improved instantly'

'I gave up veganism and my health improved instantly'

Although many advocates of veganism remain healthy, after two years of health issues, I’m admitting defeat – and I’m not alone


https://www.telegraph.co.uk/health-...oved-instantly/

Quote:
A couple of years ago, veganism was booming. I was editing a glossy vegan food magazine and every day brought more plant-based product launches and glowing Instagram stars proffering raw Buddha bowls.

I too went vegan in the summer of 2016, aged 45 – after years as a vegetarian with an abiding love for animals, it seemed ridiculous to keep eating eggs and dairy when alternatives made from soy, pea protein and lentils were suddenly available. I had constant access to health information, and a cabinet rattling with supplements.

What I didn’t have, unfortunately, was any understanding of how veganism would affect my health. Despite reading glowing reports from other vegans of how their energy had increased, I was tired for hours every day after waking. My hair was dry and brittle. My gums bled, I caught colds and felt low much of the time.

Nickel allergy

It took two years of inexplicable skin rashes and pain before I was diagnosed with a severe nickel allergy – a mineral in abundant supply in soy, pulses, beans and wholegrains. My entire diet, effectively. I had no idea that nickel allergy existed, but the NHS dietician I was finally assigned told me that she was seeing increasing numbers of patients developing it after turning vegan. It’s hard to cut out nickel entirely – but meat, fish, eggs and dairy contain none.

Despite my moral reservations, the specialist told me that I had to stop being vegan. I braved a piece of fish, and was amazed by its deliciousness. I introduced prawns, salmon, tuna and mackerel to my diet, along with eggs and cheese. Within a few days, my low mood lifted and my energy returned. I felt like taking long walks again, and over the months, my hair was thicker, and my skin less rash-prone, too. Most importantly, I slept better.

Are we risking our wellbeing?

A few years into the vegan revolution, it seems, the uneaten chickens are coming home to roost. Increasingly, dieticians and GPs are expressing concern that in the stampede to save the planet, we may be risking our wellbeing. Last week, it was reported that Cheltenham Ladies’ College has taken the unprecedented step of giving regular blood tests to newly vegan pupils to maintain health and prevent eating disorders such as anorexia, often linked to highly restrictive diets.

And though many advocates remain healthy, others, like me, are admitting defeat. Singer Miley Cyrus recently revealed that she’d reverted to a less restricted diet.

“I’ve had to introduce fish and omegas into my life because my brain wasn’t functioning properly,” she said.

Despite following “the strictest [vegan diet] you’ve ever known” for six years, other health issues reared up, including hip pain and a feeling of malnourishment. She reluctantly gave in and ate fish, cooked by her ex-husband, actor Liam Hemsworth – also no longer vegan, after suffering agonising kidney stones from excess oxalates, found in beans and spinach.

Actress Anne Hathaway has also spoken about her change of heart after going vegan – she “just didn’t feel good or healthy”.


When people don’t listen to the experts

Dietician Jane Clarke accepts that cutting down on meat can be beneficial for health, but is concerned by veganism’s wholesale promotion by bloggers, rather than health experts.

“It’s great that there is now a much wider range of non-meat sources of protein, but the power of social media and supermarkets to influence our food choices needs to be combined with scientific evidence,” she warns, adding that the trend for highly processed vegan food with lots of sugar, fats and salt added to make them tasty shows “you can easily be unhealthy as a vegan”.

Clarke says the evidence still points to the health benefits of a balanced diet – including a limited amount of animal protein and dairy. Research recently published in the journal BMC Medicine found the lowest mortality rates in those eating up to 80g meat a day. “Calcium-rich foods including cow’s milk are proven to be beneficial to bone health and help produce anti-cancer substances such as butyrate. The fact is, meat is a great source of easily accessible protein.”

GP Noreen Nguru, founder of whatthedoctorrecommends.com, says deficiencies of nutrients and vitamins are “common among new and even established vegans, and include micronutrients deficiencies in vitamin D, calcium, omega-3 fatty acids and zinc – all responsible for building strong immune systems and protecting against bone fractures, high blood pressure and fatigue.”

She adds: “Vegans are also at a much higher risk of developing a Vitamin-B12 deficiency which, if left untreated at a significant deficit for too long, can potentially cause irreversible neurological effects such as paresthesia (numbness or tingling in the hands and feet), co-ordination difficulties and even problems with memory.”

Such deficiencies can be prevented with careful supplementation – essential for healthy veganism – but some argue that nutrients and vitamins can be harder for the body to absorb this way. In one study by Oxford University published in 2010, half the vegans in the sample were B12 deficient.

“The implications of diving into a meat-free, egg-free and dairy-free diet without adequate preparation and research are likely to bring more harm than good,” says Nguru. And though she agrees that meat and dairy consumption have been linked to problems such as bowel cancer, “there are several less restrictive diets that offer heart-protective benefits and reduce the risk of cancer, such as low carb and Mediterranean diets rich in omega 3 and good fats.”

A return to meat

Life coach Bianca Reimer, 41, went vegan in 2011, having been largely vegetarian. Despite taking all the recommended supplements as a vegan, including omegas and B12, “I kept craving lamb and chicken,” she recalls. Though she initially felt better, “my energy was still very depleted and my acupuncturist suggested I should eat eggs and meat again. I added salmon, and then I got pregnant after two years of trying. I also started eating chicken and felt so much better for it.”

After returning to meat, she adds, “the impact on my mental and physical wellbeing was close to immediate. But I don’t think there’s a one-diet-fits-all approach. Each of us should eat whatever suits us at different stages of life.”

Currently, 87 per cent of the UK population still eats meat, while 7 per cent are vegetarian and 4 per cent are, like me, pescatarian; between 1 and 2 per cent are vegan. Many ex-vegans find vegetarianism a more successful refuge. Sophia Husbands had a failed attempt at veganism in 2018.

“I did Veganuary for my health,” says Husbands, 41, founder of wellbeing site LoveHappyBody, “but I started to get run down, and developed mouth ulcers in just a month. I felt dizzy and it turned out my iron levels were very low.”

Last year she went vegetarian, and says she’s found the diet much more sustainable. “I’ve lost weight and my skin has improved. But I try to keep a balance now, and I’m wary of totally eliminating anything, as I think that can spark intolerances. If I craved meat or fish, I would return to it.”
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  #2   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 05:45
Benay's Avatar
Benay Benay is offline
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Demi, thanks for this post
You are well read and articulate to boot
Good informative read
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  #3   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 07:38
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BawdyWench BawdyWench is offline
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Quote:
The fact is, meat is a great source of easily accessible protein

Well, there's a penetrating glimpse into the obvious.

Quote:
And though she agrees that meat and dairy consumption have been linked to problems such as bowel cancer ...

Operative word here is "linked." If meat caused bowel cancer, I don't believe we would have thrived (or even survived) as a species.

Our newspaper has a food section. It is 99% devoted to vegan and plant-based recipes, restaurants, and lifestyle. I was amazed this past weekend to see an article on the first page of that section highlighting a food truck that serves meat-filled meals. I don't expect to see another one like it for a very long time.
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  #4   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 08:53
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GRB5111 GRB5111 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BawdyWench
Well, there's a penetrating glimpse into the obvious.

Operative word here is "linked." If meat caused bowel cancer, I don't believe we would have thrived (or even survived) as a species.

Our newspaper has a food section. It is 99% devoted to vegan and plant-based recipes, restaurants, and lifestyle. I was amazed this past weekend to see an article on the first page of that section highlighting a food truck that serves meat-filled meals. I don't expect to see another one like it for a very long time.

Agreed, and I've put in bold the most important statement in the quote above. Most of these "findings" and "studies" are epidemiological which can merely associate the broad variety of foods eaten with the health issue; yet, meat (mostly red) is usually picked out of the lineup as the culprit. It's in vogue today to vilify meat and favor plant-based anything regardless of how unhealthy it might be to the individual. Unfortunately, some are learning that vegan, vegetarianism, and plant-based can be very damaging to health if certain measures aren't taken. Including meat as the primary protein source makes a diet much easier to manage without dependencies on the supplement science necessary to maintain one's trajectory toward a reasonably long life span.
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  #5   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 09:43
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JEY100 JEY100 is offline
To Good Health!
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A favorite meme on meat:
Attached Images
File Type: jpeg IMG_1002.jpeg (34.9 KB, 37 views)
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  #6   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 11:23
Benay's Avatar
Benay Benay is offline
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I went to our Natural Foods store to pick up my freshly ground almond butter
and was impressed again
that 90% of the store is vegan - mostly carbohydrates - protein source is chicken.
And they sincerely believe that they are a "health food" store.
Most of the customers would agree.
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  #7   ^
Old Mon, Oct-12-20, 19:06
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Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Thanks Demi for all your informative posts.

I figure it this way:

1) I have the teeth of an omnivore

2) I have the digestive enzymes of an omnivore

3) I have the alimentary canal of an omnivore

4) There are 7 essential nutrients you can't get from plants

So why should I even consider being a vegan? I don't.

Plus this 'save the earth' is complete propagana.

There are zillions of acres of grassland on the planet. To grow vegetable crops on this land would necessitate exorbitantly huge amounts of fertilizer, herbicide, and water. And the fertilizer industry produces 100 times the methane than all the cow farts and burps on the planet combined (per the Environmental Defense Fund and a major university).

In contrast, grazing animals have prospored on these grasslands for millions of years with nothing but what mother nature provides. Example -- the North American Bison population was in the billions. The bisons ate the grass, and in turn fertilized the grass with their excrement.

Eating 100% grass-fed beef saves the planet. Eating corn fed beef is bad for the planet because of the growing of corn. The veggie propaganda mill won't point that out.

For lunch I had a 100% grass-fed in Florida (my home state) burger with Kerry Gold grass-fed cheese on a zero carb bagel. I helped the environment as I helped my health and my taste buds.

Bob
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  #8   ^
Old Tue, Oct-13-20, 06:35
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Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
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The link to bowel cancer......

I'm high risk and while some poo-poo this "link", we forget "meat" is not just animal protein but also everything else an animal is fed. Grasses have not changed much but the grains are another thing. Nearly all soybean is GMO. And corn.....and wheat.... neither is the same grain genetically as long ago. And the pesticides.... that gets eaten and absorbed into the fats.

Quality matters. Meats have become potential carcinogens all because of their feed.
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  #9   ^
Old Sat, Jan-09-21, 07:36
Demi's Avatar
Demi Demi is offline
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And another ...

Quote:
‘I tried to improve my health through veganism, but it made my life so much worse’

Like many others, Kate Mulvey adopted a plant-based diet to improve her wellbeing... but she was caught off guard by some worrying outcomes


Many of us are embarking on Veganuary in a desire to be healthier, save the environment or even just to lose weight as we hunker down in lockdown once again. This year a record 500,000 people have signed up to the Veganuary challenge to eat only plant-based foods for a month; double the number who pledged to go vegan in January 2019.

Yet we should be careful what we wish for.

According to a report commissioned by the Health and Food Supplements Information Service (HSIS), an influential group of doctors and nutritionists, many of us are adopting plant-based diets but that could mean a serious lack of vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fats in our diets – with worrying health implications.

I couldn’t agree more. In 2019, I embarked on a strict vegan diet to cure my crippling migraines. After years of throbbing pain, I started to look at alternative remedies. One thing I kept hearing was how certain foods such as meat, chocolate and cheese could trigger migraines.

Those of us who live in a twilight world of low-grade wellness are suckers for anything that offers us a respite from chronic pain. When a nutritionist friend told me to try a plant-based diet – “It will cure your migraines overnight,” she trilled – I immediately turned to Google. Hundreds of sites promising instant cures popped up.

Yet, following a vegan diet, I was not only thin and gaunt but I permanently lost my hearing in one ear (This, however, was not conclusively because of veganism, but a speculative association between a virus I have permanently in my body and the deficiency of several essential nutrients).

Despite the warnings about deficiency in important minerals and vitamins, veganism continues to soar in popularity. Glamourised by slim beautiful health bloggers and sold as an aspirational aesthetic by hip celebrities, we are all rushing to fill our stomachs with nut rissoles and smashed avocado.

A week after deciding to go vegan I emerged from my local Waitrose groaning under armfuls of vegetables and birch juice. I threw out my tins of tuna, walked hastily past the aisles of lamb and sirloin and stocked up on nut butter and chia seeds. At first, I don’t deny that I felt fantastic. My skin glowed and I lost a stone in weeks not months. Problems, however, started to creep in slowly. After less than a month in, I began to experience waves of extreme tiredness. My limbs felt heavy and just going to the shops felt like wading through treacle.

Eventually, I went to see my GP. “It’s probably just the menopause,” she said, as I sat slumped in the chair rattling off all my symptoms. As time went by I felt increasingly worse and continued to lose weight at an alarming speed. My face looked drawn and friends commented on my appearance. “What's happened to you?” one woman asked. “You look anorexic.” Others joined in.

Kate Mulvey's weight loss was causing concern
I was also being affected psychologically. There is hard evidence that the joyful response to food gives rise to better health. Sitting down to a plate of grass when you are a confirmed meat-eater is more like a prison sentence than a pleasurable experience – over the next few months my mood imploded like an egg-free souffle.

I became that awkward guest at dinner parties nibbling on my emergency stash of hemp seeds and rolling my eyes when the meat course is brought out. Finally, after five months I felt so weak I practically fainted on the bus one day.

The doctor sent me for blood tests. Could this be cancer I wondered, my blood running cold? I had read that one symptom is sudden weight loss and by now I looked like a wizened stick.

Thankfully it wasn’t, but the results were shocking nevertheless. I was so low in iron I had become dangerously anaemic and my lymphocytes (killer immune cells) were also on the lowish side. But the clock was ticking on a much bigger health issue that I was unaware of.

A couple of weeks later, as I settled into our annual family summer holiday, I woke up one morning unable to hear in my right ear. “I can’t hear a thing,” I wailed as I handed the phone back to my sister, unable to hear a word my father had been saying.

At first, doctors back in London diagnosed middle ear infections and ear wax with no success. Finally, in September I was sent for an emergency MRI scan. The ENT specialist said it could be an acoustic neuroma – a benign brain tumour that will need surgery if it grows too large.

Two very anxious weeks later, I was so relieved to hear the scan was clean that I hardly registered when the specialist told me I would be permanently deaf in one ear.

Desperate to know I asked if it had been caused by my low level of vitamins and iron.“Unlikely,’ she said. “It's ideopatic [no known cause].”

She did explain however that there was a potential link between certain viruses. especially herpes which could potentially travel up the nerve to ear and cause sudden hearing loss. I have Epstein Barr which lies dormant in my central nervous system and flares up when I am run down. Being so depleted of nutrients due to the vegan diet could potentially have reactivated the virus, she explained.

To learn you are partially deaf for the rest of your life is devastating; to realise that it could have been avoided is even worse. Whilst I know that it was not directly caused by veganism, even a tenuous link is a worry.

Accepting my new silent reality has not been easy and my social life has suffered. When I go out with a group of people, I can only pick up snippets of the conversation and I can't identify where the sound is coming from. I spin round in all directions trying to keep up with what is being said. The only recompense is I have rekindled my love affair with pulled pork and goats cheese salad. My cheeks have filled out, I sleep deeply and my energy has come zinging back.

Nevertheless, there are lessons to be learnt. I believe I have paid a hefty price for changing my diet so drastically and not getting proper medical advice beforehand.

Dr Nisa Aslam, a GP who is one of the authors of the HSIS report, explains: “The HSIS research found that six in 10 do not examine their health needs before switching to plant-based diets. Awareness of nutrient shortfalls is also very low, with fewer than a fifth of plant-based adherents identifying vitamin B12 as an issue, and no-one name-checked vitamin D despite the fact that nearly all major dietary sources of the ‘sunshine vitamin’ are animal or fish-based. Awareness of zinc, iodine and selenium – other nutrients that are hard to obtain on plant-based diets – is almost non-existent. That’s why taking a multivitamin and multimineral supplement is so vital.”

Dr Chris Blatchley, medical director of the London Migraine Clinic, says supplements are essential: “Whenever you are embarking on such a vegan diet, it is imperative to take vitamins and supplements – particularly B12, iron and omega-3 – in order to ensure you don’t get deficient.’

A modest restriction on meat and dairy have been shown to have health benefits, as has an increase in consumption of vegetables and wholefoods, yet the wellness industry is often peddling extreme dietary advice which can be dangerous. Criminalising certain foods (since when did eggs become a nutritional no-no?) and cutting out entire food groups as a route to optimum health, can make us ill.

A spokesperson from the Vegan Society pointed out that just because a food is labelled vegan does not automatically make it healthy: “'A vegan diet is great when done properly, but make sure you don't miss out on essential nutrients. Just because you're vegan that doesn't mean you're 100 per cent healthy, as there are vegan versions of almost every type of junk food you can think of.”

Nowadays I am glad to say I am back to eating tasty lamb chops and mozzarella salad. I realise the benefit of introducing more plant-based foods, and lentils and beans are now a staple. I have even learnt to love tempeh (fermented soya).

Hopefully one day the tide will turn and we will stop to think before we throw that tasty pack of Cumberland sausages into the dustbin.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/health-...liftigniter-rhr


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  #10   ^
Old Sat, Jan-30-21, 14:39
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WereBear WereBear is offline
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Quote:
Dr Nisa Aslam, a GP who is one of the authors of the HSIS report, explains: “The HSIS research found that six in 10 do not examine their health needs before switching to plant-based diets. Awareness of nutrient shortfalls is also very low, with fewer than a fifth of plant-based adherents identifying vitamin B12 as an issue, and no-one name-checked vitamin D despite the fact that nearly all major dietary sources of the ‘sunshine vitamin’ are animal or fish-based. Awareness of zinc, iodine and selenium – other nutrients that are hard to obtain on plant-based diets – is almost non-existent. That’s why taking a multivitamin and multimineral supplement is so vital.”


And just how is plant-based diets "better" for health? Do these people not hear what they say?
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  #11   ^
Old Sat, Jan-30-21, 17:36
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deirdra deirdra is offline
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Also "meat" being linked to bowel cancer dates back to when "meat" included all sorts of crap like Spam & hotdogs. And "linked" could be related to the buns, fries & milkshakes consumed with the "meat".
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  #12   ^
Old Sun, Jan-31-21, 02:14
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Kristine Kristine is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WereBear
And just how is plant-based diets "better" for health? Do these people not hear what they say?
Amen. And this quote:
Quote:
A vegan diet is great when done properly, but make sure you don't miss out on essential nutrients.
Sure. I recommend supplementing with beef, pork, fowl, eggs and dairy.
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  #13   ^
Old Sun, Jan-31-21, 15:43
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Bob-a-rama Bob-a-rama is offline
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Sometimes it's very difficult to separate the propaganda from reality.

The veggie people have been saying for years that saturated fats will clog your arteries. Pardon me if I call that B.S.

I have hardly eaten any veggies since I went on Atkins Induction (when Bob Atkins was still alive) and continue but call it keto.

A few years ago the Internet shopping cart on my on-line business was bought by a different company. The new company had a different way of doing things but imported the old cart, merged it with theirs, and missed one of the safeguards. I noticed the problem when someone figured out how to get my products for free. And since shipping is automatic and immediate I lost.

It took 4 days for the new shopping cart to figure out what was wrong, and the fix was to convert over 600 products to the new shopping cart's native format (at about 25 minutes per product).

My heart was skipping beats and my GP sent me to a heart specialist. He determined it was Premature Ventricular Contractions caused by anxiety.

He did the standard 3 tests, the ultra-sound operator was audibly excited about how good my circulation is and how open my blood vessels were. They finally told me to stop the stress test as I got off the chart, and the vessels that feed my heart were functioning at top form.

After all the cheese, butter, bacon, nuts, cream, etc., I've been eating for decades, my circulation is as good as someone in top form 20 years younger than my age.

I hardly eat any veggies, and I hardly ever get sick - a mild 2 day cold every 15 years or so and that's it.

Bob
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Old Sat, May-15-21, 06:26
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RobinB RobinB is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BawdyWench


Operative word here is "linked." If meat caused bowel cancer, I don't believe we would have thrived (or even survived) as a species.
.


Agree. Seems like common sense.
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