I'm so confused!! please help

Samshine

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Hey,

I'm a fairly new vegan, veggie for 8+years, spent a couple months transitioning, and been vegan for over a month.

I am so confused about amino acids and protein. Do I have to combine foods to get my amino acids? Is there something that covers all bases?

I feel like everything I read contradicts and then mentions this other vitamin/mineral etc I won't be getting. I've started taking "veganicity" multi vit, but this amino acid thing still alludes me.

Please help!
 

Veganite

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You do NOT need to combine foods, like rice and beans, for example, to form complete proteins. Protein deficiency is a very rare thing. It's a big myth that vegans fall short on their protein requirements, including amino acids.

You really do not need to supplement with anything other than B12 and maybe vitamin D if you don't get enough sunshine where you live. That is it!

You will get plenty of amino acids if you consume enough food every day, and yes, I mean a vegan diet. If you are consuming enough calories for your body mass, you will most certainly be getting enough protein and amino acids for your body.

Plant-based foods contain all the protein and amino acids you will ever need. No supplements necessary, but make sure you eat enough.

Amino acids – 20 different ones in the foods you eat each day – are small subunits of a large protein molecule. When you consume a protein, your digestive system breaks it down into individual amino acids, which your cells then recombine and link together to form a new protein within your body.

amino acids
  1. a simple organic compound containing both a carboxyl (—COOH) and an amino (—NH2) group.
    "the amino-acid sequence of a protein"
 

Pete Anenome

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I've been vegan a long time (decades), never taken supplements or even thought about what vitamins, etc. I might or might not be getting. Nearly 50 and fit enough to climb at a decent grade, much fitter than most people of my age, rarely ill, regular as clockwork and sharp as a pin. Eat what you can, when you can - it works for all the other animals :)
 
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mikek

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I've been vegan a long time (decades), never taken supplements or even thought about what vitamins, etc. I might or might not be getting. Nearly 50 and fit enough to climb at a decent grade, much fitter than most people of my age, rarely ill, regular as clockwork and sharp as a pin. Eat what you can, when you can - it works for all the other animals :)
+1
never been an issue for me in 35yrs. never even thought about it.
same for my son & daughter, both in their 20s and raised totally veggie - 95% vegan.

same with B12 as well tbh. There's enough of it kicking about as additives in various foods.
 

Samshine

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You do NOT need to combine foods, like rice and beans, for example, to form complete proteins. Protein deficiency is a very rare thing. It's a big myth that vegans fall short on their protein requirements, including amino acids.

You really do not need to supplement with anything other than B12 and maybe vitamin D if you don't get enough sunshine where you live. That is it!

You will get plenty of amino acids if you consume enough food every day, and yes, I mean a vegan diet. If you are consuming enough calories for your body mass, you will most certainly be getting enough protein and amino acids for your body.

Plant-based foods contain all the protein and amino acids you will ever need. No supplements necessary, but make sure you eat enough.

Amino acids – 20 different ones in the foods you eat each day – are small subunits of a large protein molecule. When you consume a protein, your digestive system breaks it down into individual amino acids, which your cells then recombine and link together to form a new protein within your body.

amino acids
  1. a simple organic compound containing both a carboxyl (—COOH) and an amino (—NH2) group.
    "the amino-acid sequence of a protein"
Thank you so much!! This is music to my ears (or eyes seeing as I'm reading it). Been doing my head in trying to sus this stuff out, and tbh it's been getting to the point there just isn't enough hours in the day to micro manage every meal.

I eat plenty fruit/veggies/legumes/wholegrains etc and my weight is stable so I guess I can hope for the best!

Really appreciate the time you took to reply, put my mind at ease :)
 
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Samshine

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I've been vegan a long time (decades), never taken supplements or even thought about what vitamins, etc. I might or might not be getting. Nearly 50 and fit enough to climb at a decent grade, much fitter than most people of my age, rarely ill, regular as clockwork and sharp as a pin. Eat what you can, when you can - it works for all the other animals :)
Thank you! That's really reassuring, sounds like you're in great health! I'm new to veganism (a couple months) and I've been hearing accounts of people not being able to do it long term as they haven't managed to stay healthy. Tbh I assumed that may be due to poor diet choices rather than anything else, and your experience reaffirms that :) thanks again!
 

Samshine

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+1
never been an issue for me in 35yrs. never even thought about it.
same for my son & daughter, both in their 20s and raised totally veggie - 95% vegan.

same with B12 as well tbh. There's enough of it kicking about as additives in various foods.

Thanks for your reply! It's so reassuring to hear accounts from people who aren't micromanaging every meal but just embracing a healthy lifestyle, I'd started thinking without some sort of nutritional training I was doomed!

Thanks for the b12 heads up, I'll start keeping an eye out for foods it's added to. Just last night I watched a clip on the BBC talking about how the "only" place to get b12 was meat, but I'm sure it's added to the animals food like a supplement... The media is doing me no favours at the moment!
 

Veganite

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B12 is a very cheap supplement. I paid maybe around $20 for my sublingual spray that will last me a year, easily.

If you're really concerned, you could have this checked next time you get your blood work done to see if you're within safe parameters. I know some vegans are against taking any sort of supplement. Dr. John McDougall suggests not taking supplements with his starch-based (vegan) diet program. And it is true, you can find B12 in some things, like nutritional brewers yeast, for example. A lot of fortified foods will not have nearly enough B12 in them per serving.

The only place to get B12 is from nature, the same place the animals get it from. They get their B12 through the food and water they consume. In the older days when we drank untreated well water, we would get more than adequate amounts of B12, but now we treat our water sources, and wash all our vegetables clean, because of pesticides, so the B12 is pretty much non-existent, with the exception of fortified foods.

Research would indicate that people over the age of 50 are more likely to fall deficient on B12, which is why I choose to supplement, myself.

Here's a couple links that might help explain it in a little more detail:
https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/vitamin-b12-deficiency-can-be-sneaky-harmful-201301105780
https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/vitamin-b12-deficiency-can-be-sneaky-harmful-201301105780
https://www.vegansociety.com/resources/nutrition-and-health/nutrients/vitamin-b12/what-every-vegan-should-know-about-vitamin-b12
https://www.vegansociety.com/resources/nutrition-and-health/nutrients/vitamin-b12/what-every-vegan-should-know-about-vitamin-b12
https://www.vegansociety.com/resources/nutrition-and-health/nutrients/vitamin-b12/what-every-vegan-should-know-about-vitamin-b12