The current wave across the world is to switch to a healthier lifestyle and diet; for this, millions of people are opting out of meat based menus and adopting vegan way of life.
What really are vegans? Vegans are vegetarians but with lot more diet restrictions, particularly in terms of consuming animal products.
“vegans are vegetarian but a lot more”
A vegetarian is someone who does not include any kind of meat, poultry and seafood in his/her diet, but keep on consuming animal products such as milk and eggs.
Vegans on the other hand not only avoid meat, poultry and seafood but they take a little step ahead by also not consuming any by- product of animals like milk, eggs, honey etc
Benefits of turning Vegan
- Plant based food offers all the necessary nutrients but are generally devoid of cholesterol and fat hence are considered anytime a better option.
- It is believed that Vegan people follow a healthier lifestyle. We know that red meats and few other meat products are linked to heart related diseases, hence by turning vegan people are opting for a healthier option thereby reducing the chances of developing ailments like increased blood pressure, diabetes, etc.
- There is a similar belief that vegan food is linked with fitter body as compared to their non vegan counterparts as excess fat can be avoided in the vegan diet.
- It is one of the easiest and best methods of reducing carbon footprints and making the environment green.
- A considerably less amount of crops and water is required for fulfilling the needs of vegan people as compared to people depending on animals as in that case a big chunk of land has to be utilized for the animal feed which otherwise could be used solely for human consumption thereby reducing the pressure on already reduced natural resources.
Nutritional aspect in VEGAN menus
A well planned and balanced Vegan diet will definitely have all the nutrients required for a healthy person.
Protein can be acquired from whole grains, soy products, legumes, nuts, seeds. There are many plant based food which are rich in iron like- flax seeds, baked potato, lentils, pumpkin seeds. Calcium rich plant food are-chick peas, figs, oranges etc. Vitamin rich are- soy milk, oats, fortified cereals, etc. Carbohydrates and fats requirements are met by a vegan by the intake of cereals and pulses. Hence we can see that vegan can get all the nutrients required from plant based products provided a proper diet is followed.
Going vegan is a great opportunity to learn more about nutrition and cooking, and improve your diet. Getting your nutrients from plant foods allows more room in your diet for health-promoting options like whole grains, fruit, nuts, seeds and vegetables, which are packed full of beneficial fibre, vitamins and minerals.
The vegan food pyramid consists of grains, vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, and herbs, to educate vegans on how much they should be eating for a balanced diet.
Present scenario across the world
Although in India it may take some time to get popular but across the world, there is a sharp increase in the number of vegan food businesses and vegan menus on offer. “As plant based diets are becoming more and more popular amongst the restaurant goers, we’re riding on the wave of veganism getting into the mainstream” restaurant owners around the world are saying. “People are curious about it and they’re finding out that vegan food is not just a plate of boring salad”. It’s experimental to try out dishes like sweet potato burgers, spaghetti with squash, jackfruit etc which were quite unheard of few years back also. Here India has an advantage as it already has a variety of vegan dishes in its kitty.
This being one of the modern trends hence almost all chefs across the world are devising different innovative but nutritive vegan menus and ways to popularize it.
Hayes and Jarvis