Everyone these days seems to be jumping on to the vegan buggy, and why not? Veganism is linked to lowering the risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes as well as increasing one’s life expectancy. With all that said, switching to a meat and dairy-free diet can be quite a task. Newly-turned vegans end up making a few common mistakes that hamper their health. Watch out for these blunders if you’ve recently gone vegan.

1. Eating The Same Portion Size As Your Pre-Vegan Days: Do you feel hungry more often on your vegan diet? The good part about plant-based foods is that they are low on calories, but they can’t keep you feeling full for too long. Eating the same amount of food as your pre-vegan days won’t keep you full; you must increase your portion size, and make sure you pick wholesome meals, such as Roasted Veggie Napoleon, Seitan Tacos, and Tempeh Enchiladas.

2. Not Making Up For The Missing Nutrients: When you go off meat and dairy, you’ll have to make up for the calcium, omega 3 fatty acids, vitamin B12 and other essential nutrients that animal-based foods provide. While several veggies, fruits and grains will make up for most nutrients, you will have to be extra careful about vitamin B12. Lack of this vitamin can cause loss of energy, mood swings and more. Opt for vegan, gelatin-free supplements, to compensate.

3. Indulging In Vegan Junk Food: Vegan or not, junk food is unhealthy, and will do you no good. Especially now that you’ve decided to embark upon a healthy lifestyle, you might want to stay clear of vegan-friendly cookies, chips, pretzels and other salty snacks.

4. Not Drinking Enough Water: Vegetables, fruits, grains and legumes are the key ingredients of a vegan diet. They provide the body with ample amounts of fiber, and that’s exactly why you need to drink adequate amounts of water, to help your body handle this dietary fiber and regulate bowel movement. Drink about eight glasses of water a day, and add a dose of water-based foods like cucumber, watermelon, and celery to your diet.

5. Overdoing Healthy Vegan Foods: Nut butters, raw nuts, coconut oil and hummus make for healthier eating options. But if you go around dousing your toast with almond butter, or chomping on a 16-ounce bag of raw nuts, it won’t do you any good. In fact, you may end up with an upset stomach. Moderation is key, even with these healthy foods.

There’s no doubt that a vegan diet is good for your health, but watching over your basic eating habits will help you pull it off successfully.

Read More:
The Vegan Traveler’s Guide To Surviving In An Unknown City
4 Things You Should Know About Veganism
6 Healthy Alternatives To Dairy (So You Don’t Miss Out On Your Favorite Snacks)

After pursuing her Masters in Journalism, Vanessa got her first big job as a health writer and since then, she has never switched paths. She has always been intrigued by the wonders of a holistic lifestyle, and believes it was destiny that led her to writing for the wellness industry. In her natural state, you can find her tucked under a blanket watching an Indie film, or reading obsessively. At Z Living, she writes about food trends and other daily life expeditions.