As a vegetarian, you have a responsibility to understand what unique vitamin requirements you need on a plant-based diet. We are here to give you the 101 on what vitamins they are and how to get them the easy way. All you need is a little education and a little planning. Here are some tips for both.
What vitamins do I need on a plant-based diet?
Iron in its most absorbable form is sourced from animal-based products. As part of a vegetarian diet, you need to be sourcing iron from plant-based vitamins or plant foods. Iron is better sourced alone as it can compete with other nutrients for absorption. To enhance absorption of iron from plant-based diets, eat foods high in vitamin C alongside.
Some of the best plant-based food sources include lentils and legumes, nuts such as almonds, cashews, pine nuts and macadamia, which can produce even small amounts of iron in sesame or hemp seeds. You can also find iron in raisins, dried fruit, broccoli, spinach, watercress and brown rice. There are many places you can get your plant-based vitamins.
Vitamin D is primarily sourced from the sun and because of this, it is a common misconception that it is unlikely we suffer deficiencies. This couldn't be further from the truth! Vitamin D is a common deficiency throughout the world, and those following a plant-based diet are at greater risk. Women need progressively more vitamin D as they get older.
You either get your vitamin D from controlled exposure to sunlight, or you can also get it from mushrooms, fortified cereals and orange juice, or from a supplement.
Vitamin B12 can’t be sourced from plants. You may find a little in the food you are eating however, it is tough to get your vitamin B12 consistently from plant foods and a supplement is highly recommended if you are not eating meat.
Who didn’t wake up to a glass of milk with breakfast as a kid? Although not such a common practice anymore, dairy products still are a primary source of calcium although in recent years studies have come out questioning absorbability of dairy-sourced calcium. Those following plant-based diets should try sourcing calcium from nuts, seeds and leafy greens. And remember from the age of 30, a woman’s calcium requirements increase, so it becomes even more vital to meet your calcium needs.
Iodine is a supplement that is very important for your thyroid and metabolism health and is often sourced from shellfish, dairy products or fortified salt. The upside is, iodised salt is allowed as part of plant-based diets however due to the rise of fancy sea salts, many opt to avoid the metallic taste of Iodine in salt. You can also source Iodine from seaweed; although, seaweed may not be everyone’s cup of tea or easily accessible on the daily. This is why many vegetarians may opt to supplement iodine.
More than 85% of total body zinc is found in skeletal muscle and bone and zinc is a vital nutrient that aids in many functions in the body including immunity. Zinc is sourced from meat in most peoples’ diet. Plant based sources of zinc can be found in beans, chickpeas, nuts and seeds however these sources contain phytates which bind to zinc and make it harder to absorb. Try soaking any legumes and nuts, and seeds before consumption to increase the absorption of this essential mineral or finding a good zinc supplement to maintain high levels of zinc.
Plant-based vitamins and fortified foods
To successfully source all the vitamins and minerals you need as a vegetarian can be a challenge and can lead to serious health problems if not achieved. Health professionals recommend that you keep regular checks on your nutrient levels and take pvitamins to meet requirements where dietary intake is insufficient.
Ode Daily is a supplement designed for those following plant-based diets such as vegans and vegetarians. Ode Daily makes one aspect of life a little less challenging with an easy to take multi-vitamin meeting all the needs of a vegetarian or vegan.
Ode Daily Supplement
What is Ode Daily? A science-backed daily vitamin powder made specifically for plant based, vegan or flexitarian individuals who are looking to fill the gaps in their nutrition in the form of a tasty drink. Does Ode Daily really work? The active… read more