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RyanCarey comments on How a lazy eater went vegan - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: Greg_Colbourn 09 October 2014 04:26:54PM *  1 point [-]

I'd say B12 is the only really critical supplement needed as a vegan (and even then, lots of plant milks are fortified with it, so it's quite hard to avoid). To be on the safe side, you can take a 1 a day supplement tailored for vegans, like: https://www.vegansociety.com/shop/supplements/veg1-orange-90s Although I've recently noticed that I've gone nearly a year without this (was going to try a soylent recipe instead, and didn't, and forgot to restock!), and have not suffered any ill effects. In actual fact, I've had a pretty rubbish diet for large parts of the last year (marmite sandwiches, crisps, cereal) and have been fine. Maybe I'm pushing my luck though!

If you look at all the foods eaten in the world, the vast majority are of plant origin, so meat is narrow in scope from that view (it just seems central from a modern-day Western perspective); perhaps the scope is large enough for the analogy not to hold with fruits and vegetables together, but either fruits or vegetables might make a comparable analogy to meat.

My point was mainly that it's possible to synthesise very close analogues of animal products from plants and it's not much trouble to get them (Beyond Meat and Hampton Creek Foods are state of the art, but stuff like Fry's vegetarian is widespread and easy to get). More data is needed for things like Soylent and Power Smoothies, although people have been living for months on them now I guess.

Comment author: RyanCarey 09 October 2014 06:40:28PM *  0 points [-]

I've recently noticed that I've gone nearly a year without this (was going to try a soylent recipe instead, and didn't, and forgot to restock!), and have not suffered any ill effects.

Well, I would say you haven't suffered any noticeable ill effects. You don't actually know how healthy you would feel if you were an omnivore so it's hard to say that you have not suffered any adverse health effect.

Comment author: Greg_Colbourn 09 October 2014 09:38:55PM 0 points [-]

I don't remember feeling or being any more (or less) healthy when I was an omnivore (I was one up until age 2004 (age 23)). But note that I've never reached an optimal level of physical fitness as an adult - maybe one of these years I'll stick to an exercise regime for long enough!