For our second Ask The Vegan Woman column, here are some interesting questions that have been posted by one of our community members on our Facebook page:
Hi, I’ve been a vegan for a few months and from a health point of view can you answer the following questions:
1. What is wrong with eating an organic egg? 2. What is your view on the Paleo diet, particularly how it views grains. 3. I have taught myself how to cook from scratch using some vegan cook books and loving it but I have noticed that lots of them are rice/other grain based, am I going to get fat, where can I find some easy carb light recipes please?
Thank you x
Thank you for the interesting questions! Let’s go:
Question #1: What is wrong with eating organic eggs? The problem with eating eggs of any kind, be it the standard eggs that you buy in the supermarket, organic eggs, “freedom” eggs, and eggs laid by backyard chickens, is the sad and highly disturbing price behind the egg industry.
Here are two quick facts that many people who eat eggs are not aware of:
1. The egg industry has no need for male chicks (since they do not lay any eggs), and as they hatch, the chicks are sorted: females for a life of constant production, males to death (by suffocation, shredding, or gas). If you are wondering why the males are killed after birth, and not later on for their meat, the answer is that the chickens that are raised for laying eggs and the chickens that are raised for their meat are different breeds of chickens, each type was genetically nurtured for the purpose the industry had for them (the eggs or the flesh).
2. Each time a hen lays an egg it takes up huge resources from her body. The production of the eggs requires great usage of nutrients. In nature, hens do not lay eggs as frequently, but we have nurtured the breed that lay the most eggs, for max production and profit, which is why the vast majority of laying hens suffer from a variety of mal nutrition problems and some even die from lack of nutrients, deformation and internal organ problems caused by the constant laying, and exhaustion.
To understand this topic more in-depth, and to read more about the topic of backyard chickens please see my latest article on the ethical problems of eating eggs from backyard chickens.
While there are also researches that show egg consumption causes health problems (mostly related to blocked arteries) in humans, the biggest and most serious topic with eggs is how extremely cruel and unethical the consumption of eggs is.
Question #2: What is your view on the Paleo diet, particularly how it views grains.
A note about the Paleo diet: Any form of nutrition that is based on the unnecessary suffering of others, and the intentional killing of living beings, should, in my view, be treated as illegitimate; especially as there are so many healthy and nutritious options out there that are plant based.
From a health perspective, while there are many people out there who are claiming that the Paleo diet is healthy, there are others, including doctors, who are saying the exact opposite. Here are a few resources on this topic that you might find of interest:
- The Paleo Diet Is Uncivilized (And Unhealthy and Untrue), by Dr. McDougall
- The Real Paleo Diet, by Dr. Michael Greger
- The Vegan Paleo diet, by Lindsay Nixon
Regarding grain consumption: This is of course more of a health related question than a vegan one, and the vegan community itself is quite split on this topic. While some vegans may believe that grains are and should be an integral part of a well balanced plant based diet, others, such as the Raw Vegans and the 80/10/10 vegans amongst us, may believe the exact opposite, and there seems to be good points being made on both sides.
Question #3: Am I going to get fat on a vegan diet? Where can I find some easy carb-light recipes please?
One of the funny things that happen to many vegans when they move from a non-vegan diet to a vegan one, is that they actually, initially, lose some weight (taking out meat, dairy based products and eggs will do that!), only to then discover the world of vegan junk/ cakes/ and delicious foods, and gain it all back!
In order for us to not gain too much weight and at the same time not lose too much either, we need to keep things balanced. A great way of doing that is to incorporate as much fresh veg into our diet as possible, and keep an eye out for the fats and sugars. For some great tips on nutrition and weight control on a vegan diet, see the article of our health and nutrition coach, Emily Segal, of Triumph Wellness, titled Why Did the Magical Vegan Weight Loss Skip Me?
Hope this helps!
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