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‘Beyond Broccoli’: Dangers of Vegan & Vegetarian Diets

‘Beyond Broccoli’: Dangers of Vegan & Vegetarian Diets

By Dana Shultz for DietsInReview.com

Have you ever equated vegan with dangerous? Neither had we.

But if you’ve been following a vegan or vegetarian diet, or may consider doing so in the future, Susan Schenck – author of the new book Beyond Broccoli: Creating a Biologically Balanced Diet When a Vegetarian Diet Doesn’t Work – wants you to consider something first: perhaps it isn’t the best thing you can do for your body.

Much to her readers’ surprise, Schenck, who had previously been a vegan and vegetarian for years, uses her new book as a platform to argue why these diets don’t work, namely for their adverse long term effects on the body, including severe vitamin and mineral deficiencies.

Schenck – who also wrote the popular raw diet book The Live Food Factor – speaks not only from a place of authority as a licensed acupuncturist and master of Traditional Oriental Medicine, but also from a place of experience. She was a raw vegan herself for six years, as well as a raw vegetarian for a year. And although she formerly believed these were the healthiest diets a person could follow, she later discovered this wasn’t true after she began suffering from such symptoms as vitamin B12 deficiencies, memory loss, bloating, and fatigue.

Once she began experiencing these and other adverse effects, Schenck started consulting other professionals in her field who’d also formerly been vegan and vegetarian but had since began following other diets. Their feedback, along with her own extensive research, makes up Schenk’s 28-chapter book about the benefits of straying from a strictly plant-based diet, and how incorporating small amounts of meat – namely fish – can be incredibly healthy.

Schenck argues that 5-10 percent of a person’s caloric intake should come from animal foods – either raw or lightly cooked – to avoid deficiencies. But that the animal protein should be “clean” and come from organically-fed, free-range sources.

Schenck gives a loose guideline in the book for what a healthy diet should consist of, including eating plenty of all natural, unrefined, organic foods, and limited amounts of dairy and grain. She also suggests eating plenty of plant foods, non-sweet fruits, hemp seed oil or olive oil in moderation, and as many greens as you like.

All in all, Schenck’s advice seems well founded, and her diet would be a healthy one for just about anyone to follow. Although before committing to any new diet plan, we recommend individuals first consult their doctors to see if it’s a good fit for them.

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5:25AM PDT on Sep 27, 2013

(Continued from before)
Those who want to eat animals to get B-12 would eat humans if it wasn't against their law. Anyway, B-12 is available in milk products, especially Swiss cheese. Also, there's no shortage of good B-12 supplements. Flax seeds are the best sources of omega 3's, much better than fish. Let the sincere, undeluded, good people of the world do the research and they'll see that they can get all their nutritional needs through the humane lacto-vegetarian lifestyle, which does not involve killing, and which will make you healthier.

5:10AM PDT on Sep 27, 2013

This article is just a tiny part of a global plot by the Illuminati to mislead seekers of the vegetarian lifestyle, telling them it's dangerous, when in reality, the opposite is true, and the meat-eating DIEt is dangerous. The lacto-vegetarian lifestyle is time tested, proven, and authorized by eternal Vedic scripture. I've been a sincere lacto-vegetarian for over 40 years. During that time, I've seen the insincere fadders and experimenters come and go. The meat-eaters, aka animal killers, are basically atheistic people. They have a short history of human life and think they come from apes. Their scriptures are man-made, and they know it. That's why they abandon it for covered atheism. However, the majority of people who last as lacto-vegetarians, such as the billions of healthy, long-lived Hindus throughout history, have a strong belief in God and in God's Vedic history throughout billions of years of human life on this planet. Such information, archaeological, or otherwise, are continually suppressed by the evil rulers of this planet, the Illuminati, and their dumbed-down minions in the real Axis of Evil countries, Britain, USA, and that trouble making nuclear-powered place in the middle east you can't mention. You get all your vitamin and mineral needs from the lacto-vegetarian lifestyle. B-12 is manufactured by bacteria, not animals. It's in human intestines as well as the animal's. Those who want to eat animals to get B-12 would eat humans if it wasn't agai

6:17AM PDT on Aug 16, 2012

My wife and I are a little below 70 and a little above 70, lifelong vegetarians from families practicing vegetarianism for well over a thousand years. Our markers for lipids, blood sugar and blood pressure are near optimal. We largely eat steamed/cooked food(not raw as a rule). We do take a small amount of milk products which takes care of B12, probably. I have been studying nutrition for over 10 years and many of my friends have reversed metabolic diseases through diet and some exercise. I find the article disturbingly ignorant and ignores the available research. There are one fears considerations other than health here, most importantly ones relating to ethics
May I humbly suggest that those who are interested a deep into these issues to read the books of Peter Singer, a distinguished teacher of philosophy with an open mind

11:06AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Good info...thanks

8:21AM PDT on Jul 31, 2012

A friend of mine takes some twenty plus supplements per day and is always catching tons of colds. flu and whatnot.
Many people do valid research to support whatever lifestyle that they choose. I am fond of meat and poultry but that doesn't mean that I don't look to various meat alternatives and watch the size of my servings.
A lot of supplements do not face strict regulation and one must always be on guard for quality and risk assessment, being natural is not always one hundred per cent safe.
People generally will follow whatever choice that best suits and comforts their world view and outlook.

1:58AM PDT on May 21, 2012

Of course the animal protein should be organic or wild caught(for fish).

1:56AM PDT on May 21, 2012

As I have firmly believed my entire adult life, though I have looked extensively into the pros and cons of vegetarianism and veganism, the bottom line is Human Biology developed as Omnivores. This is how our biology best gets the nutrients it needs. Mostly plant based, but not all.

4:11PM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

This explains very well the phenomena that has been occurring here lately:

http://grist.org/sustainable-food/lets-put-an-end-to-dietary-tribalism/

8:20AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

There is ACTUAL (not anecdotal) evidence linking the decrease in cognitive ability, brain shrinkage and dementia to a deficiency of nutrients like omegas and Bs.

I see a double standard here. The anecdotal evidence presented here by people who have personally experienced the outcome after they tried to live on a veg diet and got sick and had to revise their diet to include fish and occasional small servings of humanely raised organic meat .....is not considered to be valid, but the anecdotal evidence described by Hodson is supposed to be valid?!?
I don't think so.

One person who is trying to make a living by running a vegetarian cooking class says something pro-veg....so it must be true? Not likely!

I have nothing to gain by sharing my anecdotal evidence except the knowledge that I have shared it and I am not misleading anyone. Hodson can't make that claim.

1:24AM PDT on Apr 25, 2012

Wow, talk about continuing to be completely OFF TOPIC, what on earth do circus elephants have to do with eating broccoli?

Shelby, there may have been a case or two of a cow who adopted another's calf, but it is not natural and does NOT occur often, and when it does, it's usually because a rancher restrains the cow and introduces the calf slowly. Her own calf is probably either also weaned or dead. If you've watched "Last American Rancher", that is exactly what one rancher did.........the cow's own calf was stillborn and he removed it immediately. He had another calf born to a cow that had a ruptured uterus and had to be put down. He put the orphaned calf on the other cow and she accepted it, but only after he rubbed the scent of her own calf all over it.

Yes, Robert, your attitude is just that. If you had your way, and could just preach and lecture people to "convert" them, then all the animals in the world would not die by human hands. Good luck with converting anyone with your attitude and approach.

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