Vegan nutrition guide: A simple plant-based diet
In our vegan shopping guide we have already shown you what you need to consider when buying food. Today, we'll be looking at how you can use these products to create a balanced and healthy diet that provides you with all the nutrients you need. Here are three principles that you should follow in your everyday diet.
Table of contents
- Focus on unprocessed foods and cook as fresh as possible
- Watch your macronutrients
- Watch your micronutrients
Focus on unprocessed foods and cook as fresh as possible
Unprocessed foods such as fruit, vegetables, salads and potatoes should make up the majority of your shopping. The German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends five portions of fruit and vegetables a day. Some experts even recommend nine portions, with one portion being roughly equivalent to a heaped hand. Fruit and vegetables not only provide you with essential vitamins and minerals as well as plenty of health-promoting phytochemicals, but also lots of fiber, which you need for healthy digestion. Therefore, always opt for whole grain products (pasta, oatmeal, bread) and consume whole grain products every day.
In contrast, avoid processed products, white flour products, sugar, sweet drinks and substitute products. They have a lot of energy, but at the same time provide few micronutrients and are only filling for a short time. The same applies to alcohol. Substitute products often contain too much salt and too much saturated fat. Of course, it's okay to reach for ready-made or substitute products from time to time, but it shouldn't be the rule: pay attention to your macronutrients
A plant-based diet with fruit, pulses, vegetables and wholegrain products is the ideal basis for staying fit and healthy. To ensure your body gets all the macronutrients it needs, around 15-20% of your daily calories should come from plant-based proteins (e.g. pulses, tofu), 50-60% from complex carbohydrates (such as potatoes, rice, oatmeal) and no more than 30% from plant-based fats (e.g. avocado, rapeseed oil, linseed oil, nuts). Ideally, half of your plate should therefore be filled with fruit and vegetables and the other half with wholegrain products and protein sources as well as a lower proportion of high-fat foods and oils.
As a vegan, you don't have to worry about protein deficiency. With a balanced diet and by combining different protein sources (e.g. grains and pulses as in our protein powders), you will be sufficiently supplied.
Read more about protein and biological valuenow.
Pay attention to your micronutrients
In addition to an adequate intake of macronutrients (carbohydrates, fat and protein), it is essential for your body that you also consume all micronutrients (vitamins, minerals and trace elements) in sufficient quantities. A varied diet with plenty of wholegrain products, fruit and vegetables will already provide you with sufficient amounts of many vitamins. Vitamin B12 is only found in animal products and should therefore be supplemented in any case (e.g. in the form of our vitamin B12 lozenges).
In addition, an insufficient intake of iron, calcium and iodine can occur. These so-called critical nutrients are mainly found in animal-based foods. By regularly checking your blood count, you will know whether you are getting enough of them. To be on the safe side, you can also simply use a combination supplement such as our Vegan Essentials products. These also contain vitamin D, which should be supplemented regardless of the type of diet.