Hi, I have been vegan for 6 months. Before that I was vegetarian for 2 years (a real one) with no fish or seafood products. Well now I'm a dietary vegan trying very hard to have a vegan lifestyle with the hair products, the soaps, the animal testing, the vegan products that don't test on animals. Just recently I realized there are two things you have to look for in products. 1. Is it vegan? 2. Is it tested on animals?
Physically I am a bit sleepy all the time. My energy's fine, if not above average. I *think* my energy's better than it was when I was vegetarian, but am not sure. I have not run a proper comparison test or anything like that.
My friend says I look tired all the time, but that was a few weeks ago. She gave me a speech about getting equal carbs/equal protein which I found extremely helpful and made a lot of sense. Before she said anything, I would have all carbs for a meal. Like for lunch I'd have a plate of hash browns and a side salad. Now I realize that there should've been nuts sprinkled in the salad, for example, so that my carbs could have something to fall back on. Since three weeks ago, my energy level has improved in my opinion, but I have nobody to give me feedback about that. Maybe she will when I see her again?...Really though, I'm tired of discussing this issue with non veggie people, even if they are helpful. I don't want to be a bother to meateaters, you know what I'm saying?... Earlier tonight I had a mean craving for beef, which has disappeared, thankfully. My willpower has never been a problem for me. That craving has since been replaced and is now for any food in general.
I'd like to add that when I first became a vegan this Summer, my bones would pop a lot, from what I believe to be an adjustment to nondairy calcium source. They seem to be all right now...
Hi Ragdolly- I am no doctor but you might need the following- Vitamin D, Vitamin B12 and Iron in supplement form. When I was feeling lethargic I started taking these and felt way better. All three provide energy.
Hi Cheryl, my iron is higher than average (in a male's range) so it is probably either Vitamin D or Vitamin B12 or both... TBH my energy's just fine last couple days. I must've ate some foods high in those two vitamins.
You shouldn't need to supplement for iron on a vegan diet, there is no statistical difference in incidence of iron-defficiency between vegans and meat eaters. And iron supplements are not always safe to take.
But if you are eating a vegan diet you must MUST take a B12 supplement. No question.
Ragdolly - try eating Superhero for a week. I bet you will feel amazing after that! Eating whole grains - like brown rice and dark leafy veggies - like kale - sprinkled with nuts/seeds does wonders for ones energy levels!
I'm just past the three month mark. Also feeling pretty tired all the time... tho that's not anything new for me (due to underactive thyroid). But your post gives me hope that things may improve in the energy department. Other than that I'm feeling very happy about my vegan diet!
I have passed the 13 month mark and want you to know that my energy level has beyond improved. At 27 yrs old I am as energetic as I ever was eating meat for 24 years of my life and animal products for 26.
Not only that but I am VERY strong, lifting heavy furniture when needed, and my nails could be used as a screwdriver!
I'm not an expert but I'm going to guess that the energy thing had to do with not getting at least 40 grams of protein (recommended DRA for adult female) daily. I don't know about you but I was barely eating 20 grams a day the first few months I went vegan.
My friend knew of my diet and one night we were sitting alone together painting and I said, "Why am I so cold, I can't seem to warm up!"
Then she gave me a loving lecture about adequate protein intake (plant source of course because she knew my diet). She was worried because she'd seen my energy level that day and the previous couple of days was next to nothing and I was shivering and she was not. She is almost 60 yrs old and had to help me carry some of my paintings. It was embarrassing, but I never ever gave up because I kept in mind the vegans who had done it for decades.
So because of her lecture I fixed the problem and have been getting better ever since.
Protein is not only energy to do things, but energy to burn to keep us warm especially in Winter.
My protein sources include:
Garbanzo beans (I add to spaghetti), blackbeans, pintos (mashed aka refries and or whole), tofu (silken or hard), navy beans, butter beans, great northern beans, limas, macadamia nuts, peanut butter, cashews, cashew butter, brown rice and brown rice pastas, and vegan meats (although processed are excellent sources).
*Make sure you have equal carbs/equal protein with each meal. Since the goal is to get at least 40 grams, you can divide it by getting 30% - 33% for each 3 meals.
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