"I had to quit being a veg'n because of health issues....." - VeggieBoards
Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 Old 06-26-2011, 07:00 PM
Newbie
 
GhostUser's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 0
Got another question for all you folks. We've all had someone, at least once, inform us that they had to quit being a veg'n because of 'health issues'. They rarely expand on that statement and although I've tried to do a couple searches to find out more, I'm either using the wrong words or there are no really issues that preclude veg'nism. Does anyone know of any diseases that would make being a vegetarian/vegan impossible or is this truly an excuse?
GhostUser is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 Old 06-26-2011, 07:04 PM
Veggie Regular
 
sequoia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 5,299
I know that with eating disorders, doctors will discourage the patient from being a veg*n because it creates rules about food, and they don't want the patient to think of any food as "off-limits".

"If you are lonely when you're alone, you are in bad company."
Jean-Paul Sartre
sequoia is offline  
#3 Old 06-26-2011, 07:07 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Melanie's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,921
I wouldn't say that it's an excuse more than someone who didn't do their research and/or ate nothing but chips and cheese pizzas and mac&cheese. If you're gonna do the veg*n thing right, you're going to eat whole foods and a variety of them, not just omit meat from your diet.

Other than that, I'm not aware of any diseases that would keep a person from eating veg*n, although I think anything is possible.
Melanie is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#4 Old 06-26-2011, 07:27 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Amy SF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Southern California
Posts: 20,217
Yeah, I had a supervisor tell me that she was vegetarian for 10 (!) years, during which time she ate nothing but rice and vegetables! She admitted that her diet was unhealthy and boring (although she didn't specify HER diet, just a vegetarian diet) and finally quit being a vegetarian. Although to her that meant adding chicken to her usual diet of rice and vegetables.

From what I can figure out, she simply left the meat out of her diet and didn't bother to try anything more creative than "rice and vegetables" and probably felt that adding the chicken back was adding protein back into her diet to make it "healthier". Yeah, if all you're going to eat are rice and vegetables, of course it's going to be an unhealthy diet.

*this space not for sale*
Amy SF is offline  
#5 Old 06-26-2011, 08:27 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Hazelnut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,995
A guy who sat with me as a trainer last year for a few weeks, said his daughter tried being either vegan or vegetarian (I can't remember), and within two weeks she was in the emergency room, and she had to start eating animal products again.

I know this guy well enough to know he's not BSing me. And, he kept on about his daughter. His responses were emotional, and I truly believe he went through some **** with his daughter in the hospital.

I had no idea what to say against all this! It's not like this was a roommate's cousin's ex-girlfriend's best friend we're talking about here, either. This was something he went through with his daughter.

The only thing I could think of saying was that maybe the sudden change in diet aggravated a pre-existing condition.

Give thanks to Mother Earth for Her greatest gift...

...gravity.

For without it, we would be lost.
Hazelnut is offline  
#6 Old 06-26-2011, 09:37 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Photojess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Central NY
Posts: 3,423
Well, the dialysis dieticians say you can't effectively be a vegetarian or vegan patient on dialysis because there is too much phosphorus in beans and legumes, which would elevate that level too much, and the albumin level would drop too low. There are a lot of restricted foods actually, and then plenty of animal based foods encouraged.....it drives me nuts.

if you're on coumadin, then you have to be very careful about the amt of greens consumed; peanut butter has to be limited while on dialysis for some pts.

My brand new website for health coaching, and where all of my recipes will reside!
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
previous food photography and portrait blog: www.creativeinspirationsphotography.blogspot.com

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1435413727
Photojess is offline  
#7 Old 06-26-2011, 09:42 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Irizary's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 8,749
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazelnut View Post

A guy who sat with me as a trainer last year for a few weeks, said his daughter tried being either vegan or vegetarian (I can't remember), and within two weeks she was in the emergency room, and she had to start eating animal products again.

I know this guy well enough to know he's not BSing me. And, he kept on about his daughter. His responses were emotional, and I truly believe he went through some **** with his daughter in the hospital.

I had no idea what to say against all this! It's not like this was a roommate's cousin's ex-girlfriend's best friend we're talking about here, either. This was something he went through with his daughter.

The only thing I could think of saying was that maybe the sudden change in diet aggravated a pre-existing condition.

Sorry, but that just doesn't make any sense at all. It was coincidental. There's nothing about being vegan that in 2 weeks time is going to make somebody's body break down like that. It's the same foods people normally eat, just taking out the animal products and changing the proportions. I seriously doubt even an anti veg doctor would tell him that that was due to veganism.

"If you want to know where you would have stood on slavery before the civil war, don't look at where you stand on slavery today, look at where you stand on animal rights." - Paul Watson.

 

Every animal you eat
was running for her life

Irizary is offline  
#8 Old 06-26-2011, 09:57 PM
Veggie Regular
 
ElaineV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,026
As far as I know, there are no specific issues that make being a dietary vegan impossible. However, there are lots of issues that can make it more difficult. On top of that, a number of people go on a fast and instead of saying that they're dieting or anorexic or fasting, they'll say they went vegan. A lot of it is just confusion and misinformation. Like, think about how many people think that bread isn't vegan. They just don't get it. They'll eat only carrots and tomato juice for a week and then complain that they can't get enough protein as a vegan.
ElaineV is offline  
#9 Old 06-27-2011, 01:33 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Cyclone T's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 814
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElaineV View Post

how many people think that bread isn't vegan. They just don't get it. They'll eat only carrots and tomato juice for a week and then complain that they can't get enough protein as a vegan.

^^

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former - Albert Einstein
Cyclone T is offline  
#10 Old 06-27-2011, 02:20 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Josh James xVx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 3,097
Like I was saying in the other thread, a lot of people are under some bizarre and inaccurate assumptions about what a vegan actually is. Some of them were just juice fasting or eating only fruits and vegetables, etc. They either misunderstood or didn't seek out solid medical advice from RD's and probably had a poor grasp on the nutritional needs of the human body.

One story I can relay is that the vegan RD I trust the most, Jack Norris, actually became an RD because during his early years of vegan activism he heard from dozens of people who told him they got sick on a vegan diet and he didn't know how to respond to many of their concerns, lacking the proper nutrition training. He's now convinced that a lot of the ex vegans were lacking vital nutrients like B12 or D, which can easily be added to most people's diet. Completely ignoring something like B12 can lead to chronic fatigue or worse, and eventually be fatal. There's a ton of vegans and ex vegans who think or thought they didn't need it for some reason, probably due to well intentioned but ultimately misguided pseudo scientific advice from fringe corners of the vegan community, usually not based on hard science.

That's the best reason I can think of that the most people fail to thrive on a vegan diet, but everyone's body is different. If you think you're not as healthy as you should be then see a doctor and get blood work. Find out what specific nutrients you're lacking in and add more of that to your diet. If being vegan is really important to you for ethical, environmental or health reasons then you'll make a strong effort to stay vegan and not use sickness as an excuse to relapse into old habits. Otherwise I'm skeptical of your vegan experiment overall.

Tam! RUGH!
Josh James xVx is offline  
#11 Old 06-27-2011, 03:31 AM
Newbie
 
GhostUser's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 0
So far it is sounding like excuses.....and bad dietary habits! I'm thinking in particular of Lierra Keith as she has been quite vocal on her twenty years as a vegan "causing her degenerative spinal problems". Unfortunately omni's seize on her screwy statements and accept it as gospel even when you show them her errors.

And Josh, you're right about some vegans ignoring the need for suppliments. Even showing them studies attesting to our need for B12, where it can be gotten (or not) and they persist in doing it wrong. The Lierra Keith's of the future.

I guess it isn't too surprising that none of these people ever elaborate.
GhostUser is offline  
#12 Old 06-27-2011, 04:15 AM
Beginner
 
tensai's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh James xVx View Post

Like I was saying in the other thread, a lot of people are under some bizarre and inaccurate assumptions about what a vegan actually is. Some of them were just juice fasting or eating only fruits and vegetables, etc. They either misunderstood or didn't seek out solid medical advice from RD's and probably had a poor grasp on the nutritional needs of the human body.

One story I can relay is that the vegan RD I trust the most, Jack Norris, actually became an RD because during his early years of vegan activism he heard from dozens of people who told him they got sick on a vegan diet and he didn't know how to respond to many of their concerns, lacking the proper nutrition training. He's now convinced that a lot of the ex vegans were lacking vital nutrients like B12 or D, which can easily be added to most people's diet. Completely ignoring something like B12 can lead to chronic fatigue or worse, and eventually be fatal. There's a ton of vegans and ex vegans who think or thought they didn't need it for some reason, probably due to well intentioned but ultimately misguided pseudo scientific advice from fringe corners of the vegan community, usually not based on hard science.

That's the best reason I can think of that the most people fail to thrive on a vegan diet, but everyone's body is different. If you think you're not as healthy as you should be then see a doctor and get blood work. Find out what specific nutrients you're lacking in and add more of that to your diet. If being vegan is really important to you for ethical, environmental or health reasons then you'll make a strong effort to stay vegan and not use sickness as an excuse to relapse into old habits. Otherwise I'm skeptical of your vegan experiment overall.

He has a really good looking book coming out, called Vegan for Life: Everything You Need to Know to Be Healthy and Fit on a Plant-Based Diet, haven't read it yet but pre-ordered it. It seems to largely focus on being a guide for optimal nutrition on a vegan diet. I don't really get why people don't do some research when changing their diet, or when they run in to problems - it's not that people don't have any other options for books on being veg*n and healthy. But perhaps his books helps people when helping/spreading information..
tensai is offline  
#13 Old 06-27-2011, 04:25 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Wednesday_12's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 856
I can understand the Vegan diet being very difficult for some people... although not impossible, just very difficult.
There is a blood condition in my family (called hereditary elliptocytosis) that results in a shortened red blood cell life span... my father had quite bad anaemia for most of his childhood that resulted in fainting spells. I can imagine that it would relatively hard for him to maintain a Vegan diet without nutrient supplementation. I think the same would apply for other blood conditions.

God loved birds, he created trees.
Man loved birds, he created cages.
Wednesday_12 is offline  
#14 Old 06-27-2011, 05:05 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Identity_thief's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,707
I think there are a few people who would find it very hard or even impossible to be vegan due to health reasons - including some of the examples others have mentioned. But for every one of those people, there are a LOT of people with either generally a poor diet, or with an inaquete understanding of how to eat healthily as a vegan and therefore lacking in something like B12, or even people with entirely psychosematic symptoms (how many "hi i've been vegan for a day and I think I am anemic" threads have I seen?), or have an unrelated illness they attribute to veganism shouting out about how veganism is unhealthy or they "can't" be vegan, etc etc etc.
Identity_thief is offline  
#15 Old 06-27-2011, 08:06 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Hazelnut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,995
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElaineV View Post

As far as I know, there are no specific issues that make being a dietary vegan impossible. However, there are lots of issues that can make it more difficult. On top of that, a number of people go on a fast and instead of saying that they're dieting or anorexic or fasting, they'll say they went vegan. A lot of it is just confusion and misinformation. Like, think about how many people think that bread isn't vegan. They just don't get it. They'll eat only carrots and tomato juice for a week and then complain that they can't get enough protein as a vegan.

If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me if I could eat bread...

Give thanks to Mother Earth for Her greatest gift...

...gravity.

For without it, we would be lost.
Hazelnut is offline  
#16 Old 06-27-2011, 08:40 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Melanie's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,921
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazelnut View Post

If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me if I could eat bread...

A good, well meaning, friend of mine once told me that I couldn't eat bread as a vegetarian (let alone vegan) because it had gluten in it. I kind of looked at her with a wtf look on my face and said: "Why wouldn't I be able to eat gluten? It's just the protein in wheat. It's not meat related at all!" She had to think for a minute and she was so sure of herself. We both laughed when we both realized that she meant gelatin! She knew there was no gelatin in bread, but with both words starting with "g", she got the two words confused.
Melanie is offline  
#17 Old 06-27-2011, 09:08 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Irizary's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 8,749
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wednesday_12 View Post

I can understand the Vegan diet being very difficult for some people... although not impossible, just very difficult.
There is a blood condition in my family (called hereditary elliptocytosis) that results in a shortened red blood cell life span... my father had quite bad anaemia for most of his childhood that resulted in fainting spells. I can imagine that it would relatively hard for him to maintain a Vegan diet without nutrient supplementation. I think the same would apply for other blood conditions.

What you describe doesn't make veganism any more difficult. I have hereditary blood cell/iron absorption issue too, and it's no different treating it as an omni than as a vegan. If your problems are severe, you're monitoring and often taking supplements regardless of your diet. I'm assuming he wasn't a vegan as a child and still had these fainting spells. In fact I think my issues are better as a vegan than an omni.

"If you want to know where you would have stood on slavery before the civil war, don't look at where you stand on slavery today, look at where you stand on animal rights." - Paul Watson.

 

Every animal you eat
was running for her life

Irizary is offline  
#18 Old 06-27-2011, 09:27 AM
Herbivorous Urchin
 
River's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 9,721
My future roommate claims she cannot be strictly vegetarian and G-d forbid vegan, because of an iron deficiency. I think it's a BS excuse, but I'd never say that to her out loud. Instead I can help stock the kitchen with plant based foods, and hope it has enough of an influence.

Quote:
"You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.”
Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
River is offline  
#19 Old 06-27-2011, 11:36 AM
Veggie Regular
 
Hazelnut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,995
Quote:
Originally Posted by River View Post

My future roommate claims she cannot be strictly vegetarian and G-d forbid vegan, because of an iron deficiency. I think it's a BS excuse, but I'd never say that to her out loud. Instead I can help stock the kitchen with plant based foods, and hope it has enough of an influence.

Omni's have iron issues, too.
Most do very well with blackstrap molasses.

I'm passive aggressive.
I would deal with her by "worrying" over her and constantly trying to feed her accidentally veg*n high-iron foods:

http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/t...ron-rich-foods
http://gotblood.ucla.edu/workfiles/D..._Source_PF.pdf
http://www.loveyourbaby.com/iron-rich-food-list.html

Give thanks to Mother Earth for Her greatest gift...

...gravity.

For without it, we would be lost.
Hazelnut is offline  
#20 Old 06-27-2011, 11:54 AM
Veggie Regular
 
offthahook's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Posts: 582
I get the impression that most "health reasons" are just people eating a crappy vegan diet.

auto correct can kiss my ask
offthahook is offline  
#21 Old 06-27-2011, 12:12 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Pirate Ferret's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: London
Posts: 2,950
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melanie View Post

A good, well meaning, friend of mine once told me that I couldn't eat bread as a vegetarian (let alone vegan) because it had gluten in it. I kind of looked at her with a wtf look on my face and said: "Why wouldn't I be able to eat gluten? It's just the protein in wheat. It's not meat related at all!" She had to think for a minute and she was so sure of herself. We both laughed when we both realized that she meant gelatin! She knew there was no gelatin in bread, but with both words starting with "g", she got the two words confused.

Ive had the gelatin gluten confusion too!

I dont think theres anyone who could not ever stay vegan due to health issues if they ate well. Maybe itd be HARDER to be vegan, and often very restrictive, but not impossible. There is no vitamin exclusive to one food (correct me if im wrong), so if you cant eat one thing find it from another. to be honest though, I dont blame some people in situations like that.
Pirate Ferret is offline  
#22 Old 06-27-2011, 12:25 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Melanie's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 1,921
If anything, I became healthier after I became vegetarian. Almost instantly, actually. I've had a lot of digestion issues ever since I had my daughter (strange how a pregnancy can change a woman's system completely). As soon as I stopped eating meat, I stopped getting the belly cramps I was always getting, and the sharp stomach pains I got. I was always at the hospital for tests, ultrasounds, etc... No one ever found anything "wrong" with me. One thing was clear though, dairy (it was established a while back that I was lactose intolerant) and meat consumption, was what was making me feel sick and crampy all the time. Because when I stopped, I felt better.

I still feel crampy from time to time if I eat something fatty or too spicy, but at least I don't feel that way after every single meal.

Oh, and I've never had to take any supplements, either as an omni, vegan or (now) vegetarian.
Melanie is offline  
#23 Old 06-27-2011, 02:22 PM
Herbivorous Urchin
 
River's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 9,721
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazelnut View Post

Omni's have iron issues, too.
Most do very well with blackstrap molasses.

I'm passive aggressive.
I would deal with her by "worrying" over her and constantly trying to feed her accidentally veg*n high-iron foods:

http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/t...ron-rich-foods
http://gotblood.ucla.edu/workfiles/D..._Source_PF.pdf
http://www.loveyourbaby.com/iron-rich-food-list.html

I've decided to just completely never mention it, if I plan to get along with her for 12 months (we are very good friends, don't get me wrong), I am going to have to ignore that lame ass excuse she has.

Quote:
"You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.”
Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
River is offline  
#24 Old 06-27-2011, 03:46 PM
Newbie
 
Gerit's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 45
Most people who have to quit being Veg*n have no clue what the basics of nutrition are. They try to survive soley on lettuce and give up Veg*nism after three days and say to everyone they know, 'You know I tried that whole vegetarian thing and that is the most unhealthy thing I've seen! How do they get their protein?!", or something along the lines of that. Briefly stated, they eat a diet poor in nutrition, quit, and then use that excuse to persuade others not to try it.
Gerit is offline  
#25 Old 06-27-2011, 03:54 PM
Veggie Regular
 
runnerveggie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,862
I think that the issue most of the time is that a lot of people don't take very good care of themselves. It's not necessarily because they are stupid or lazy -- it may very well because they put other priorities in their lives first (for example, family or work). It's not that much trouble to maintain a healthy vegetarian diet once you've gotten used to the routine, but the initial change can be difficult and people might not pick up all the info they need right away. If they continue eating their previous diet minus the meat, dairy, and eggs, that almost certainly going to be detrimental to their health in one way or another.

I have an acquaintance who used to be vegetarian, but stopped because she gained a lot of weight. What does she eat for lunch every day? Lean Cuisines. If you're relying on convenience foods for your sustenance, you're going to have a problem being a vegetarian unless you have extra cash to spend on food and access to lots of veggie prepared foods. So, it totally makes sense to me that she wasn't able to maintain it. Maybe someday she'll go back to it when she can spend a little more time and effort on her food.

Then there are a few really unlucky people who have chronic health problems or multiple food allergies that make a vegetarian diet very difficult if not impossible.
runnerveggie is offline  
#26 Old 06-27-2011, 03:59 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Midwest, USA
Posts: 1,189
I wonder how many of those " veganism made me sick" people are the same types who hang on a doctors every word so much that doctors tend to have a psychological hypnotic power over them. I mean, that, along with the fact that most doctors are quick to find faults with a vegan diet (if they don't practice a vegan diet themself).
Empty_Shell is offline  
#27 Old 06-27-2011, 04:32 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Parsnip's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 1,672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hazelnut View Post

If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me if I could eat bread...

But many kinds of breads are not vegan. Seems like a legitimate question.
Parsnip is offline  
#28 Old 06-27-2011, 04:46 PM
Veggie Regular
 
runnerveggie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 1,862
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parsnip View Post

But many kinds of breads are not vegan. Seems like a legitimate question.

Indeed! But, I have heard of people who think it's because of the yeast...
runnerveggie is offline  
#29 Old 06-27-2011, 05:06 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Hazelnut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,995
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parsnip View Post

But many kinds of breads are not vegan. Seems like a legitimate question.

No, they really meant bread in general. They seem shocked when they see me eating it. They are equally shocked when they see me eating potato chips, cookies, pasta, and peanuts.

Give thanks to Mother Earth for Her greatest gift...

...gravity.

For without it, we would be lost.
Hazelnut is offline  
#30 Old 06-27-2011, 05:09 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Midwest, USA
Posts: 1,189
Potatoes have eyes.
Empty_Shell is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the VeggieBoards forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off