Pros and cons of a vegan diet

A vegan diet is a plant-based diet devoid of all animal products including eggs, honey, and all dairy products. Veganism has become much more mainstream, and many people choose plant-based diets for reasons related to health, personal ethics, religion, or a combination of these factors. 

Thinking of switching to a vegan diet? Let’s look at the pros and cons before deciding if a vegan diet is right for you!


I think one of the first things to establish is why you’re choosing to go vegan. That will probably help determine which benefits are most relevant to you. But regardless of whether you choose veganism for health, environmental, or ethical reasons, plant-based diets have many advantages!

1. Health Benefits

Overall, it’s really easy to load up on whole grains, legumes, fruits and veggies. A well-rounded vegan diet supplies vitamins B1, C, and E, as well as fiber, magnesium, folic acid and iron. Vegans typically consume heart-healthy foods which lowers cholesterol, blood pressure and glucose levels. Additionally, eating processed meat (hot dogs, deli meat) can make you more susceptible to colon and esophageal cancer. Vegan diets can improve your odds for avoiding those issues.

2. Possible Weight Loss

Some people choose to go on a vegan diet to lose weight. Vegan diets eliminate many foods that are high in fat and calories. 

3. Better for the Environment

Many people choose to ‘go vegan’ because research has shown that veganism is more environmentally sustainable. Some studies have shown that producing 1kg of protein requires 100 times more water than producing 1kg of grain protein. 

4. No Animals Are Harmed

Another popular reason people choose vegan diets is because no animals are harmed or killed to produce vegan-friendly foods. Some vegans will even avoid clothing or other products that are made from animals, poultry, fish or bees. 


A vegan diet can be a great benefit for your body and the environment, but it has some drawbacks.

1. Limited Food Choices

Veganism is the most restrictive of plant-based diets. If you currently eat a standard American diet, you will be making some major changes in your day-to-day meals. For some people, it can be really challenging to stick to parameters a vegan diet calls for. 

2. Possible Nutritional Deficiencies

Vegan diets have health benefits, but there are potential nutritional deficiencies. For example, vegan diets have been shown to lack calcium which is required for bone formation, muscle contraction, and other essential functions in the body. Vitamin B-12 is needed for healthy nerve function and blood cell production and can lead to a deficiency called pernicious anemia

Naturally, in a diet that does not allow meat, protein can be another issue. However, many vegans will find alternative protein sources in plants such as dried peas, kidney beans, chickpeas, fava beans and adzuki beans, to name a few. 

Some vegans will also take supplements in addition to these protein alternatives, it just depends on the person and how their body reacts to the diet. Everyone is different!

3. Requires Discipline

Plant-based diets require diligence and shopping for vegan-friendly food is more difficult than a standard diet. Reading nutrition labels and ingredient lists will become part of the routine when shopping and making foods. Animal by-products like gelatin, whey, casein, and honey are not compliant with a vegan diet and are found in many foods, especially of the processed variety. 

4. It’s harder to eat at restaurants 

Vegan restaurants are on the rise, but they aren’t found everywhere. It can be more difficult to find restaurants that will cater to plant-based diets. Some non-vegan restaurants will note they have vegan or vegetarian foods on their menu. However, even some of the plant-based foods will have animal by-products. For example, vegetable soup can be made with a broth that used animal bone for flavoring. 

5. Weight Gain

Weight gain is one reason why a vegan diet is bad for some people. Switching to a plant-based diet after eating too much processed food, which is high in fat and calories, can leave you feeling hungry and trigger a desire to binge. In this case, it’s recommended to eat whole grains, and lean proteins to help you feel fuller longer. 

So, what’s the conclusion?

With research and planning, a vegan diet can enhance your overall health, but there are always a few things to consider.  After weighing the pros and cons, give it a try, and you might find a vegan diet is right for you!


Join Our Mailing List

    Recent Articles

    Food trends to look out for in 2023

    All of a sudden it’s the end of May, and we’re almost halfway through the year. And there is no better time than the present to step outside your culinary comfort zone and try one of the many food and drink trends making the rounds right now. Of course, not all trends stand the test of time, but there are quite a few that are in it for the long haul.

    The 3 Best Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Atlanta

    With the growing #popularity in #vegan and #vegetarian diets, it’s only natural that new #restaurants would pop up offering their unique #recipes and #alternatives. #Atlanta, known for its bustling city and #tourist #attractions is now the #hothouse for #plant-based #eateries! If you’re planning to visit, be sure to check these places out before you leave!

    Why You Should Replace Coffee with Matcha

    Ever walk around town and wonder what that little green drink everyone can’t stop talking about? The popular drink called ‘Matcha,’ made its way as a trending alternative to notorious coffee drinkers. The popularization of Matcha entered all avenues from healthcare to even your local coffee shop.

    Lisa Vanderpump’s Restaurant in LA set to close

    One of Lisa Vanderpump’s most popular restaurants is closing down. The reality star’s famous Pump Restaurant in West Hollywood will close on July 5 when its lease expires according to Vanderpump in a statement to PEOPLE. The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills alumna said that rising rent costs influenced her to close the restaurant.

    Ocean Spray and Hershey Launch a Sweet New Partnership

    Ocean Spray Cranberries , Inc., announced a new partnership with The Hershey Company, for a line of Milk Chocolate Dipped Cranberry Bites and Dark Chocolate Dipped Cherry Infused Cranberry Bites, made with real fruit.

    Gold Medal Flour recalled after Salmonella outbreak

    General Mills recalled four of its Gold Medal all-purpose flour varieties after investigators identified the flour as a source of a salmonella outbreak. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, at least 13 people were infected in 12 different states. Three of the infected have been hospitalized, but no deaths have been reported.

    Hey! Are you enjoying NYCTastemakers? Make sure to join our mailing list for NYCTM and never miss the chance to read all of our articles!