A diet that cuts out animal products to avoid cholesterol, high levels of saturated fat & animal proteins which have been shown to increase your chance of chronic disease (type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease and various cancers) time and time again is not incomplete… it’s in fact a COMPLETELY informed decision.
In addition to this, many people consuming an animal-based diet rely on supplements to get their vitamins and minerals. Just walk down the aisle at your local grocery store and look at the cows milks, yogurt and cereals which are fortified with things like calcium, vitamin d, folate, etc. So this idea of supplementing in the modern world to reach the recommended daily intakes of certain vitamins or minerals is not a new one and certainly not limited to a plant-based or vegan diet.
I’ve mentioned methionine in the above diagram because it’s the amino acid most linked to causing a variety of cancers when consumed in high concentrations (eggs, meat, seafood and cheese naturally contain much higher methionine per serve than typical plant foods). I have covered the science behind this on my “animal protein & disease” blog with stacks of scientific literature references and videos for you to refer to. The evidence is more than compelling that animal protein sources contain amino acids in concentrations that are promoting these cancerous growths. Methionine is an essential amino acid, so we do need it, however it is found in better concentrations within plant-based protein sources compared to animal-based protein sources.
So you can get your B12 from a supplement that is shown to be highly absorbed or you can source it from animal products where the B12 sits alongside saturated fat, cholesterol, methionine, hormones and, often, antibiotics.
It is true there are some fortified foods like Nutritional Yeast & Spirulina which contain added B12, however while they do offer some B12 it’s not proven (as reliable) to avoid deficiency like the B12 supplements are, so my recommendation is for anyone following a 100% plant-based diet to take a daily B12 supplement. You can certainly try and get your B12 from fortified foods, but given the importance of this vitamin on our nervous system it’s not worth the risk in my opinion.⠀⠀
Of the B12 supplements, I recommend a Methylcobalamin form in a spray – Garden of life offers a very good value one that I believe you can pretty much have shipped globally. Otherwise, a B12 injection periodically is also something most doctors offer and works well too. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Keep your Space Suit Plant Proof,
Join the mailing list for Plant Proof news, tips, recipes, interviews and much much more.