Making t/ Connection Chp 3 Nutrition


I’ve been working for the NHS for over 15
years now and it’s wonderful, because when I get patients sent to me who are overweight
or have got heart disease or high blood pressure, I can talk to them about all the plant-based
foods they can eat that will make them a lot healthier by cutting out all the saturated
fat and high salt foods in their diet. Recommendations now by the Department of Health
is to go towards a more plant-based diet, with the encouragement to have five portions
of fruits and vegetables a day. In my opinion, omnivores can be lacking in
lots of vitamins and minerals, and nutrition generally. If you look at the obesity, look at all the
fast-foods, they are the kinds of foods a vegan just wouldn’t entertain eating at all. Certain studies have shown that vegans are
less at risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and things like hypertension, so certainly,
a vegan diet encompasses all those health benefits as well. I feel really fit and healthy, I love my food,
and I do love having treats. The benefits from a vegan diet is that it
is low in saturated fats, so you can have all these treats and you know you are still
going to be looking after your heart. People often are concerned about calcium,
which you can get from fortified foods, and vitamin B12, which you can get through things
like fortified non-dairy milks, some soya products, also from some yeast extracts. Whether you’re vegan or a meat-eater, you
still need to make sure you have adequate quantities of vitamin D, the main source comes
from sunshine, from the sunlight on your skin. So, get adequate sunshine or
have fortified foods containing vitamin D. We get quite a few queries about parents or
pregnant women who are concerned about getting the right nutrition for their children and
for their unborn child and certainly, we can assure them that they get all the nutrition
they need through a planned vegan diet. I’ve written a book for The Vegan Society
about vegan infants, it starts from conception through to infancy, and hopefully parents
are reassured that they can get all the nutrition they need for themselves and for their children. I’ve been vegan for six years and when I became
pregnant friends asked me “are you going to stay vegan? Surely not” sort of thing, and I didn’t have
any pressure from doctors or midwives, everyone seemed very happy for me to stay vegan, it
wasn’t a problem at all. I read a lot about being pregnant and I knew
everything that I was supposed to be eating and so it was absolutely fine. I was very active and fit through my pregnancy,
the pregnancy was great, I quite enjoyed it and she was nine pound three when she was
born so she was a pretty big baby without any dairy or meat. You know, I managed to produce a very beautiful,
healthy baby and everything has been great, I’ve felt very healthy and strong and fit
since I’ve had her. Breastfeeding hasn’t been easy, it’s made
me respect other animals’ milk even more and made me feel stronger that I don’t want to
ingest any other animals’ milk because their milk is meant for their babies, just as my
milk is meant for my baby. It just seems completely wrong that adults
of other species should be drinking milk that is not for them. I’ve been very lucky, I think she’s a very
happy baby, she’s not had colic or any digestive problems. Some people have told me anecdotally that
they think that’s because of my diet, that I’m not eating anything which upsets her digestive
system, so I would really advocate staying vegan and being confident about being vegan
because I do believe it’s the best thing for your baby as well as for you.