I have spoken to my Naturopathic Medicine Doctor, Ayla Wilson as a way of consulting an expert about my vegan diet. I asked her if I should take supplements and what I should look out for while on the diet.
Because of my history of low iron, she recommended that I continue to take iron supplements, and gave me Hemagenics™ that I take every day. They don’t smell or taste good, but I’ve gotten used to swallowing them quickly. She also told me I should be taking B12 each day because the majority of people get their required B12 intake from different meats and animal products. The only reliable way for vegans to get B12 is by eating fortified foods, and the B12 in these foods comes from microorganisms so it is okay for vegans to consume. Because I will not be eating many fortified foods, the best route to take was to get a supplement. I got this at Pomme, a natural food store.
The doctor recommended that if I keep with this diet after the experiment, I should get my blood tested again in January to see how it has affected my iron.
Many vegans are also known to be iodine deficient because it is found mostly in meat and animal products. You can find iodine in some bread and of course iodized table salt, but if I were to do this diet long term, I would probably want to look into finding a multivitamin that includes iodine or find an iodine supplement.
Despite it not being as much as a worry, vegans will still have a more difficult time getting enough protein. A 15-year-old girl should be getting around 50 grams of protein per day. To help me reach this goal, I bought some protein powder that I can mix in smoothies and other recipes. My mother and I have agreed that for me to do this diet, I need to track how much protein I’m getting and make sure I meet the daily goal.