Vegan Considerations

Those people who strictly adhere to the principle of Ahimsa (non-violence) by eating a strictly vegetarian diet should pay careful attention to balancing amino acids in their food intake.

Important Considerations:

* BALANCE AMINIO ACIDS by combining plant-based proteins with grains. Plant-based proteins do not contain all 22 amino acids. Amino acids are used to build cells and repair tissue, to form antibodies that fight viruses and bacteria, to regulate the enzyme and hormonal system, and to
carry oxygen to muscles during activity. Of the 22 amino acids, 8-10 areconsidered essential and must be supplied through diet. If one of the 8 amino acids is missing, the others cannot be utilized by the body.*

You can complete plant-based proteins by combining them with whole grains. Combining plant foods to complete a protein can be as easy as eating a legume such as nut butter with a grain such as whole wheat bread. Below are some other examples of specific dishes that make a complete protein.

- Rice (brown rice) and beans.
- Vegetarian Chili with beans and bread or tortillas.
- Lentils (dahl) and rice. [Lentils are a staple of the Indian diet].
- Baked beans and cornbread.
- Hummus (make with chickpeas and sesame seeds).

  • Recent research indicates that every meal does not have to contain a complete protein. The body can store various different proteins throughout the day to achieve its full amino acid quota. This means that you can eat rice pudding for breakfast and black bean soup for dinner. The protein from different meals in one day will combine to make a complete protein.*B12 deficiency. B-12 is a member of the B vitamin family and is an essential vitamin found in all animal products (eggs, dairy, fish and seafood, poultry and meat). It is essential in making red blood cells, maintaining the nervous system, and in the growth and develo

pment of children. There is some evidence that B-12 is found in fermented soy foods, algae, and sea vegetables; however, the current nutritional consensus is that plant sources of B-12 should not be relied upon as a primary source. Some vegan foods are fortified with B-12, and nutritional supplements are available.

Chlorella, a "superfood", is a single-celled fresh water microscopic green algae. Chlorella is the only known plant food to contain B12. Chlorella also possesses 19 different amino acids, making it a complete protein. Chlorella was discovered by researchers at NASA looking for ways to provide astronauts with exceptional sources of nutrition. For more information on Chlorella, see "Chlorella: The Ultimate Green Food" by B.M. Ley.

Warning: Before you change any of your food patterns, please consult a qualified nutritionist or physician especially if you feel unsure on how to proceed or you have a medical condition which prevents your from radically changing your diet.

This article was provided by Farah Nazarali, founder of The Smiling Yogi. Click Here to learn more about Farah or go to for more nutrition information.

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