1. Get enough protein. Proteins are made up of amino acids. Animal proteins provide a good mix of essential amino acids that the body can't make. When going vegan, try and eat soya, quinoa and hemp which provide these essential amino acids every day to make sure you are getting your quota.
2.Don't forget iron. When avoiding the most easily absorbed source of iron which is red meat, try and eat various plant foods such as fortified breakfast cereals, dried fruit, dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, wholemeal bread, beans and lentils. Try having these alongside a glass of fruit juice which is rich in vitamin C, to help your body absorb the iron more easily.
3. Protect your bones and consider calcium. Dairy foods are the richest source of calcium in the diet, when avoiding dairy foods, try and have rich non dairy sources daily such as tofu, calcium-fortified foods e.g. soya milk, yoghurts and puddings; rice/oat drinks; and some dark green leafy vegetables.
4. Reduce your risk of anaemia and get some Vitamin B12 in. Vegans should include fortified foods containing Vitamin B12 including yeast extract, soya milk, yoghurts, breakfast cereals, certain brands of rice drinks and oat drinks.
5.Iodine can be hard to get enough of when you are following a vegan diet. Introduce small amounts of iodised salt or sea vegetables into your diet to boost your intake.
Do you want an individualised nutritional assessment to ensure that you are eating enough of the right nutritents when going vegan? Get in touch! www.thehereforddietitian.co.uk