People who choose to become vegans or vegetarians, choose a plant based lifestyle. The difference between the two is that the vegan diet is more radical. While vegetarians may not eat animal flesh, they may eat dairy products or eggs. That can make a huge difference in the available nutrients that are readily available. Clients in Winter Haven, FL, have asked whether there are pitfalls to plant based diets and whether vegans or vegetarians age faster.
One of the pitfalls of the vegan/vegetarian lifestyle is the difficulty getting all nutrients.
Animal products contain collagen, plants don’t. They do contain all the building blocks of collagen, so when you eat plants, your body has the amino acids necessary for your body to build collagen. Collagen helps your skin look younger. Animal products have more EPA and DHA, but plants contain more ALA fatty acids. People who are vegans and vegetarians may find it more difficult to get vitamins K and B12, too. In fact, they’re often found low in all these things, B12, K, EPA, DHA and collagen. That increases the potential for premature aging if there are deficits.
An imbalance of Omega3 to Omega6 can cause accelerated aging.
When you have too little omega-3 or DHA and EPA, it can cause the skin to lose elasticity and limit the oil the body makes to keep it soft. Those two changes can make the skin look blotchy, dry and bumpy. It also can affect the hair in a similar way. Aging is more than skin deep. Missing those three fatty acids can also lead to heart disease, hypertension, osteoporosis, ADD and arthritis.
AGEs are more frequent if you have a vegan diet.
Ironically, AGEs—Advanced glycation end-products, occur when you eat a diet high in refined starchy carbohydrates, which includes artificial meat! Vegans replace meat with food like beans and sometimes grains. Both grains and beans can cause problems with digestion, which include causing blood sugar to spike. If your blood sugar spikes, it can lead to glycation of the cells where the sugar molecule attaches to the protein or fat. It’s known to cause aging and chronic disease. It’s a leading factor of cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s’ and heart disease.
- Fatty acid deficiency can cause more than dull hair, peeling nails and dry scaly skin. It can cause achy joints, digestive issues, irregular bowel movements, brain fog, irritability, weakness and lethargy.
- AGE’s damage all organs, cause sagging skin, wrinkles and breaks down collagen and elastin. When carbs break down to sugar, the sugar causes the elastin and collagen to break down and cause early aging.
- Vegans can also age slower with a well-planned diet. All the phytonutrients can provide protection for the body and help prevent cell damage that leads to aging.
- The fruits and vegetables of a vegetarian or vegan diet can also help keep you younger looking. Ensuring you’re eating a healthy well-balanced diet and cutting back on simple carbs and processed food is the key.
For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health & Fitness