Laurie Maxwell, 26, of Chicago, who gave up red meat at the age of 12 for animal welfare reasons and then became a vegan five years ago, said she has never had any health issues from not eating meat.
“If anything, my skin is clearer, and I have lots of energy and vitality. People tell me all the time how young I look and how healthy I look. I have low cholesterol and I’m a good weight. So yeah, I’m very healthy.”
Vandana Sheth, a Los Angeles-based registered dietitian and lifelong vegetarian, said the No. 1 concern of people thinking about becoming vegetarians is whether they can get enough protein, calcium and other nutrients on a vegetarian diet, but it is quite easy to get these nutrients from natural foods.
“Though supplements may be something to consider if you feel you can’t meet your nutritional needs naturally, if you are consuming the right foods, [supplements] are 100 percent not necessary,” she said.
For those just making the switch to a vegetarian diet, Kimberly Thedford, senior research nutritionist at Northwestern University, said imitation meat, also referred to as meat analogue, meat substitute, mock meat and faux meat, might be a good way to break the habit of eating real meat.
“I think the idea of completely reworking your diet is a little overwhelming,” she said. “You have to re-educate yourself.”
Read More : Non-animal Sources of Key Nutrients by Vanadana Sheth
reprinted from: http://www.veglov.com/2011/12/tips-for-going-veggie.html