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Old 08-30-2012, 07:23 PM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
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Cattknap wrote: Can those of you who are vegan think of anything that I need to add to our diet?

I highly recommend adding Spirulina to your daily regimen. Among other things, it provides a good source of B12 which can be a challange to obtain on a veggie diet. Also, go easy on the tofu and/or eat tempeh instead, because tempeh is fermented, which makes it more digestive tract friendly. Fermented black beans are a good source of protein, and quite friendly to the digestive tract.

As for eggs....I NEVER liked em, even as a kid when I was immersed in a heavy duty meat eating diet. In my mind, eggs are chicken seeds, a very concentrated form of chicken. But that's just me. I have no recommendation one way or the other regarding eggs. Do whatever feels best for you.
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Old 08-30-2012, 11:56 PM
 
Location: Brawndo-Thirst-Mutilator-Nation
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicWizard View Post
Cattknap wrote: Can those of you who are vegan think of anything that I need to add to our diet?

I highly recommend adding Spirulina to your daily regimen. Among other things, it provides a good source of B12 which can be a challange to obtain on a veggie diet. Also, go easy on the tofu and/or eat tempeh instead, because tempeh is fermented, which makes it more digestive tract friendly. Fermented black beans are a good source of protein, and quite friendly to the digestive tract.

As for eggs....I NEVER liked em, even as a kid when I was immersed in a heavy duty meat eating diet. In my mind, eggs are chicken seeds, a very concentrated form of chicken. But that's just me. I have no recommendation one way or the other regarding eggs. Do whatever feels best for you.




From what I have read, Spirulina is a B12 analogue that is basically unusable by humans for meeting REAL B12 requirements.

The analogue also monopolizes the B12 pathways...so as to block-out most of the real B-12 you consume.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spiruli...ary_supplement)



Spirulina is not considered to be a reliable source of Vitamin B12. Spirulina supplements contain predominantly pseudovitamin B12, which is biologically inactive in humans.

Last edited by Green Irish Eyes; 08-31-2012 at 04:34 AM.. Reason: Fixed the quote tags
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Old 08-31-2012, 01:09 AM
 
Location: Prospect, KY
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Originally Posted by Elle Oh Elle View Post
Yeah, I heard that the chickens are often bullied into producing more eggs. It's also considered undesirable because the eggs come from the chickens, who don't live very long. We had the same information available at my college. Once you've grown up eating meat and dairy though, it gets difficult to stop. For example, as a young girl I grew up eating with milk and eggs. I felt bad when I learned that the animals are overworked just for us. Well, it's time to find a good substitute.
This is not true when you are buying local free range organic eggs - where the general public can drop in and see the chicken farm any time. Not all farm animals are overworked (they produce these things naturally) or abused. Where we live there are many humane farms where animals are treated well. I know this is not the case in many cases though.
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Old 08-31-2012, 03:56 AM
 
Location: Giethoorn, Netherlands
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Originally Posted by Cattknap View Post
We went from meat/dairy eating right into being vegan - we are on day 9 and so far so good. We are doing this for health reasons only. I did add egg whites back into our diet since there is no fat and only 17 calories per egg white - there just doesn't seem any reason not to have egg whites and a little veggie/egg white scramble is great. Husband is not too keen tofu although I like it a lot. We are eating lots and lots of raw and cooked veggies (and beans of many kinds, quinoah, brown rice and lentils and fruit (but not too much) and a few nuts daily. All the fiber has has been a little hard on our digestive system. I ordered a Vitamix a couple of days ago and hope to get a few veggies from green smoothies. We are adding no oil to anything - I saute veggies in vegetable broth and made som good muffins the other morning with no added fat (oat bran based). I cannot eat gluten so other than oat meal and oat bran and the occasional gluten free bread, I am not eating a lot of grains. I take several supplements but think maybe I should go on a daily multiple vitamin just to be safe.

Can those of you who are vegan think of anything that I need to add to our diet?
Nutritional Yeast! It's a cheap delicious source of B12. I put it on popcorn, i make cheesy sauce with it (and cashews), put it on pizzas, cook with it. it's wonderful
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Old 08-31-2012, 08:01 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
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Here is another source of informationabout Spirulina: Spirulina - Packed with protein, B12 and iron
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:04 AM
 
Location: Volcano
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Originally Posted by tickyul View Post
From what I have read, Spirulina is a B12 analogue that is basically unusable by humans for meeting REAL B12 requirements.
In my experience this is one of the hardest conversations to have with veg'ans, because there is so much misinformation floating around, and there is so much money to be made selling supplements. There are a lot of supplements on the market which claim to supply B12, and even test in the lab to contain B12, but which in reality contain pseudo B12, which suppresses real B12 in the body.

According to the UK Vegan Society "Vegan Society B12 Factsheet" the present consensus is that any B12 present in plant foods is likely to be unavailable to humans because B12 analogues can compete with B12 and inhibit metabolism. Vitamin B12 - The Vegan Society

It is important if you depend on nutritional yeast for supplementation that you get the kind that is explicitly labelled "Vitamin B12 Fortified," because not all kinds are, and B12 is not normally present in yeast. It has to be produced separately and then added. This vitamin that is so critical to good health is only produced by bacterial action, not by plant growth. The same is true with B12 enriched cereals, and other foods.

Based on my own 20+ years of experience with veg'anism, and the experiences of friends and beloveds, I highly recommend getting an annual blood test and detailed analysis to determine what is actually going on in your body. End of the day that is all that really matters. All the supplements in the world won't help if your body can't use them.
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:34 AM
 
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In the clinic where I work we do the B12 lab test on everyone as part of the Wellness workup. It is interesting to see the number of meat-eaters whose vitamin B levels are low. Some tell us that they eat red meat daily, and they are very surprised with the lab results.

My recommendation is always that EVERYONE should have vitamin B12 and vitamin D levels checked, no matter what kind of diet.
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Old 08-31-2012, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
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Don't let the naysayers rain on your parade. If you've made up your mind to go vegan...do it and find out first hand wether or not it works for you. No one elses opinion, for or against, really matters.

With regard to the B12 controversy. Based only on my own state of health, at age 63 I've never experienced ANY of the symptoms asociated with a vitamin B12 deficiency, nor have any of my infrequent checkups ever indicated a deficiency of any kind. Could be that my faith in Christopher Hills, Gabriel Cousins, and other supporters of Spirulina as a plant source of B12, activated the placebo affect and made it work for me.

From webMD:



If your vitamin B12 deficiency is mild, you may not have symptoms or you may not notice them. Some people may think they are just the result of growing older. As the anemia gets worse, you may:If the level of vitamin B12 stays low for a long time, it can damage your nerve cells. If this happens, you may have:
  • Numbness or tingling in your fingers and toes.
  • A poor sense of balance.
  • Depression.
  • Dementia, a loss of mental abilities.

Last edited by CosmicWizard; 08-31-2012 at 10:23 AM..
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Old 08-31-2012, 10:18 AM
 
Location: The Hall of Justice
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Originally Posted by missik999 View Post
In the clinic where I work we do the B12 lab test on everyone as part of the Wellness workup. It is interesting to see the number of meat-eaters whose vitamin B levels are low. Some tell us that they eat red meat daily, and they are very surprised with the lab results.

My recommendation is always that EVERYONE should have vitamin B12 and vitamin D levels checked, no matter what kind of diet.
Yep, I agree totally. My grandmother is a regular omnivore and has a type of Parkinson's that is linked to low B12 levels. Her doctors say that her condition, which is rapidly debilitating and does not respond to medication like other Parkinson's can, is due to long-term deficiency. My sister also has low B12 and suffers from blackouts and small seizure-type reactions when she does not take her supplements, despite eating meat. Some people do not process or store it well. Everybody needs B12, and simply eating a variety of natural vegetable foods does not suffice.
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Old 08-31-2012, 12:43 PM
 
Location: Volcano
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Originally Posted by CosmicWizard View Post
Could be that my faith in Christopher Hills, Gabriel Cousins, and other supporters of Spirulina as a plant source of B12, activated the placebo affect and made it work for me.
Some people's bodies are more efficient at absorbing and utilizing B12 than others, as previous posters can attest. Some are very efficient at utilizing tiny inputs. There are even a small number of people who appear to be able to produce their own B12 by hosting the necessary bacterial colonies in their gut, although this is extremely uncommon. On the other side of the equation there are people who develop B12 deficiencies despite being meat-eaters and apparently getting a lot of B12 in their diet. And deficiencies can take years to manifest as disease. There is a broad spectrum of the ways people's bodies utilize B12, and this greatly confuses the issue.

Some people can take spirulina and be fine. Some can take spirulina and develop B12 deficiencies. To me the very least this says is that a person cannot solely depend on taking spirulina, or any other supplement for that matter, without blood tests to confirm that it is working the way they want it to in their body.

But B12 tests alone are not adequate. As the UK Vegan Society puts it (empasis added):
"A blood B12 level measurement is a very unreliable test for vegans, particularly for vegans using any form of algae. Algae and some other plant foods contain B12-analogues (false B12) that can imitate true B12 in blood tests while actually interfering with B12 metabolism. Blood counts are also unreliable as high folate intakes suppress the anaemia symptoms of B12 deficiency that can be detected by blood counts. Blood homocysteine testing is more reliable, with levels less than 10 micromol/litre being desirable. The most specific test for B12 status is methylmalonic acid (MMA) testing. If this is in the normal range in blood (<370 nmol/L) or urine (less than 4 mcg /mg creatinine) then your body has enough B12. Many doctors still rely on blood B12 levels and blood counts. These are not adequate, especially in vegans."
For myself, I place my faith in this statement, also from UK Vegan Society factsheet:
"Others have proposed specific foods, including spirulina, nori, tempeh, and barley grass, as suitable non-animal sources of B12. Such claims have not stood the test of time."
Vitamin B12 - The Vegan Society
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