Every tenth vegetarian eats vegan. The vegan diet can be seen as a strict form of vegetarianism. Contrary to the traditional vegetarian, vegans reject all food of animal origin: A strict vegan also avoids honey. The vegan lifestyle has effects on further consumer behavior. Some vegans reject any animal byproduct, such as leather, wool, feather beds or cosmetics with materials of animal origin.
Vegan behavior requires a lot of consistency, extensive nutritional knowledge and a targeted diet to ensure that the body is adequately supplied with the necessary nutrients. Particular attention should be paid to the sensible combination of protein-containing cereals in order to increase the biological availability of the protein.
Recommended protein combinations for vegans
- Bean salad with corn
- Bean soup with rice
- Lentil soup with bread
- Millet / rice with chickpeas
- Tortillas stuffed with beans
- Pasta with chickpeas
- Dishes made from soy (e.g. tofu) and millet
Alternatives to animal products
|Animal origin||Vegetable alternative|
|Meat||Tofu, mushrooms, yuba, avocado, cereals, legumes|
|Eggs||Soy flour, tofu, avocado|
|Milk||Coconut milk, oat milk, rice milk, soy milk|
|Cheese||Soy cheese, silk tofu, natural yeast|
|Honey||Agavendic juice, maple syrup, sugar beet syrup|
|Gelatine||Agar, fruit pectin|
|Butter||Olive butter, vegetable margarine|
A strict vegan nutrition does not come without dispute. The main criticism is that the body is not optimally supplied with all nutrients. In particular, a lack of vitamin B12 comes up again and again in discussion.
While this does not apply to all vegans, to eat a vegan diet requires some nutritional knowledge and a careful combination of vegetables, fruits, grains, seeds and nuts to supply the body with all important nutrients. Many people who eat vegan food are intensely occupied with their diet. They buy other products and cook according to other recipes than in the classic kitchen. Soy and a variety of cereals play a key role. They ensure a good supply of nutrients, with the exception of vitamin B12, which is produced exclusively by microorganisms and can only be found in animal products. In addition to vitamin B12, vegans can also lack sufficient intake of calcium, vitamin B2, iron, iodine, zinc, vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids and protein.
For pregnant women and most of all for children, nutrition scientists view this strict food selection very critically. Children generally need a lot of protein and vitamin B12, girls additionally iron because of menstruation. For this reason, the additional administration of dietary supplements is recommended, especially for children on a vegan diet: In particular, vitamin D, iron and vitamin B12, and possibly also a multivitamin.