Angelina Jolie's Biggest Beauty Secret

by Sarah Celebrity HealthComments: 118

angelinajolieWhat is Angelina Jolie’s biggest beauty secret?

By her own admission, a thick, juicy steak!

In interviews prior to the release of her film Salt, Jolie says that she was vegan for a long time and that it “nearly killed” her.

“I found that I was not getting enough nutrition,” says Jolie.

Thankfully, Jolie wised up in time before her health and teeth were irreparably damaged. Many vegans are not as lucky. The fact is that some of the most critical nutrients for health, vitamins A, D,and B12 are simply not found in an exclusively plant based diet.

Vegans cite beta carotene as the plant based source of Vitamin A, but at best, human digestion can only convert a very small percentage of beta carotene into true vitamin A.

People with any sort of gut imbalance, which would be the vast majority of people today, generally cannot convert any beta carotene to true Vitamin A!

Vegans also claim that getting vitamin D from the sun or mushrooms is all that is necessary, but during winter months, it is crucial to be consuming animal based sources of vitamin D, else one is a sitting duck for flu and other wintertime illnesses.

Because the original source of B12 in nature is bacteria, some nutritional sources confuse the issue by maintaining that beneficial B12 is synthesized by gut flora in the colon of humans.

While this may be true, the B12 that is produced this way is not in a usable form as very little if any of this B12 is able to be absorbed across the walls of the large intestine or colon.  The reason is that the bacteria produced B12 in the gut is not attached to the “intrinsic factor” (IF), a special protein that is secreted in the stomach.

B12 must attach to an intrinsic factor protein to be absorbed effectively. This happens when B12 that is consumed binds with the intrinsic factor that has been broken down by pancreatic enzymes in the small intestine.  The tightly bound B12-intrinsic factor complex then moves through the gut to the Ileum or lower portion of the small intestine and attaches to cell receptors for absorption.

B12 Not Available in ANY Plant Foods

Contrary to claims by the vegan community, usable B12 is not available in algae like spirulina or tempeh (a fermented soy product).  The B12 found in these foods is similar to true B12 but not exactly the same thing.   The B12 in Brewer’s yeast is due to factory fortification, in other words, it is not naturally occurring in the food.

Studies have indicated that the B12 analogues in algae and tempeh are not bioavailable to the human body – blood levels of the nutrient did not change even after algae or tempeh were added to the diet.

Even worse, these B12 imposters can actually inhibit the absorption of true vitamin B12 as the result of a competitive situation in the digestive system.  This puts those that avoid animal foods at an even greater risk for deficiency!

For these reasons, even die-hard vegans who are well researched admit that B12 supplements must be taken when one is on a vegan diet for an extended period of time.

How could a diet such as veganism possibly be a good idea if supplements are required to prevent serious deficiency?

The final nail in the coffin for the vegan diet is the travels of Dr. Weston A. Price back in the 1920’s and 1930’s.    For over 10 years, Dr. Price traveled the globe only to discover absolutely no native vegan cultures whatsoever.   Even the vegetarian cultures Dr. Price examined had poorer health compared to the meat and seafood eating cultures as evidenced by higher dental caries and lower immunity to degenerative disease.

No ancestral society ever ate vegan!

Why?   The culture would have died out in a generation or two from lack of nutrients, low immunity to infectious disease as well as rampant infertility.

From Dr. Kaayla Daniel’s article Do Vegetarians Really Live Longer? on vegan tall tales of spry centenarians supposedly living on a plant based diet:

In reality, the Hunza and Vilcabambans consume some meat and raw dairy, and the Okinawans eat far more pork than soy.   What’s more, there’s no anthropological evidence of healthy, happy fruitarians sunning in gardens of eden prior to the hunter gatherer eras.   Indeed, leading anthropologists present convincing evidence that meat helped us evolve from big bellied, tiny-brained primates to big-brained humans able to leave all-day “grazing” behind and spend the time developing civilization.  In other words, eating animal products made us human.

In truth, veganism is a modern phenomena – a political statement against animal abuse and confinement as practiced by CAFOs (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations).

Not that vegans do not have a good point – eating meat from CAFOs is not a good idea at all!    The good news is that one can find humanely raised, antibiotic/steroid free, grassfed meat from locally based family farms.    No need to reject meat and animal foods in their entirety by going vegan if you sympathize with the political arguments against eating animal foods!

So find a local farmer you trust and eat your meat, eggs, and dairy with the confidence that humans are omnivores not herbivores and that animal foods are clearly necessary to achieve your best health!

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, Dr. Weston A. Price
Gut and Psychology Syndrome (Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride MD)


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Comments (118)

  • Eden G.

    I agree very much with this article. I’m a big fan of Weston Price and the research their foundation has done. My grandmother is a strict vegan and has been for more than 40 years. She has horrible teeth all of which are capped, terrible osteoperosis, and even bone cancer. She claims she hasn’t been sick in 40 years which is obviously not true. She slumps and is so frail and thin, she looks like death. My mother was also a vegan for most of my childhood and suffered greatly from B12 deficiency. She nearly died and went to 15 different doctors who told her obscene things, all of which were untrue. She eventually came across a list of B12 deficiency symptoms and had 9 out of 10. She eats meat and healthy fats now and has never felt better. She rarely if ever gets sick.
    I agree it’s impossible that humans were fruitarians or strictly plant eaters long ago. This would have been impossible in cold winter months where the only food to be found available would have been meat products and maybe a few roots. How else would they keep warm without proper fat and hides to cover themselves? This might only work in a tropical climate where fruits and veggies grow abundantly. Where in the wilderness do you find an abundance of wild fruits and nuts more plentiful than animals except in tropical climates? You don’t, therefore most civilizations would have died off quickly in most places. It’s common sense!

    January 29th, 2016 11:18 pm Reply
  • Jean

    No ancestral society ever ate vegan? What about the Incas? Veganism goes back to the Bible… “And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” —Genesis 1:30. I admit that is not a rational statement, but just to demonstrate how old these principles are, also every indian Yogi will tell you the same story as well. Now eating vegan properly is not a simple quest, we all have different genetcs and need to find out what is an vegan diet adapted to our bodies, you cannot just improvise that. I would also just say that becoming a vegan has to do with a spiritual choice, so not anybody can become a vegan, not anybody can open up to higher vibrations and get rid of the pre-fabricated substances like meat and eggs or cheese. There is addiction here. As well as you have adiction to vegan foods like wheat or refined sugar (most addictive drug in the world, more addictive than cocaine…) Remember that here the animal has already transformed the energy of the plant which in fact is a spiritual job. If you stop thinking that we eat to survive but rather to transform the energy of the plants into higher vibrations instead (and gettting every reward of it) you really start to hit the mark. But well no anybody can or needs to agree on this to be my friend or to have my esteem.

    December 5th, 2015 6:51 am Reply
    • Sarah

      Sorry but the Incas weren’t vegan .. and that is an inappropriate interpretation of Genesis.

      December 5th, 2015 11:08 am Reply
    • Vincent

      And God showed favor to Abel (the herder) for his offerings (meat). After which, Cain (the vegan/vegetarian) flew into a rage and killed Abel. This argument over diet has been going on since civilization started.

      January 20th, 2016 9:46 am Reply
  • amanda

    I am vegan, and I follow a whole food plant based diet, and I have never felt better. But thank you for this article, I got to do tons of research on how to combat topics that you mentioned, because if you feel this way I am sure other people do, and now I have more articles I can get them to read.

    May 3rd, 2015 10:16 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      My guess is that you haven’t been vegan very long. Give it time.

      May 4th, 2015 9:11 am Reply
      • Amanda Johnston

        Oh I absolutely will do it the rest of my life. I have never been healthier in my entire life. It is just like any other way of eating you can do it right and wrong. I have seen many people fail from being vegan and from being “paleo” but just eating processed junk. It is so sad to see. When the answer is right in front of us all, just stick to whole natural foods. Thanks so much for the article, it really did give me a chance to look into many topics. I love learning, never stop learning :)

        May 4th, 2015 10:58 am Reply
        • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

          Never say never! The vast majority of vegans who went back to meat because of the health problems that started to develop would have said the same thing early on.

          May 4th, 2015 11:22 am Reply
          • amanda johnston

            In this case I will say NEVER. I completely understand why you would think what you think. But maybe if you hung out with some Plant based eaters you would understand how healthy we are. Oh and I read one of your comments that said you can spot I vegan. That made me laugh so hard, because us vegans do the same thing but in reverse, we always say I could stop a meat eater.

            May 4th, 2015 5:15 pm
      • Amanda Johnsotn

        Oh, and thank you for the link. I read the entire article, what a great read. I however, know that I will never go back to my old diet. I felt awful! I follow a Whole Food Plant based diet. It is talked about in The China Study, The Starch Solution, and Prevent & Reverse Heart Disease among many more. I am fine with anyones diet, because its their own personal choice. I however choose to eat this way, because it agrees with me so much.

        May 4th, 2015 11:09 am Reply
        • T33CH

          The reality is that some people’s genetics may allow them to tolerate nutritional deficiencies longer than others. Secondly, veganism is the least sustainable of all diets. Consider this – if the most sustainable is eating locally grown foods, whether meat or plants, then the opposite means that it is the least sustainable.

          For example, is importing out of season fruits and veggies more sustainable than eating locally grown meat which can be produced year round? Think about it, not every state can produce enough food year round to feed its population. It has to import foods from all over the country and internationally. Yes, CAFO production can be cruel, but agriculture is also cruel. It is one of the most destructive forces on the planet. Environments are destroyed, animals are destroyed or displaced, heavy amounts of insecticides, herbicides, fungicides, and synthetic fertilizers are used.

          There is more land on this planet suitable for grazing animals than growing crops.

          May 4th, 2015 12:34 pm Reply
          • amanda johnston

            I actually eat the majority of my foods from my local famers market. Also, eating a plant based diet does not make you deficient in anything if you eat a range of fruits,veggies, grains, lentils, beans and all the other good stuff. All my labs are always perfect, and when I was eating meat and dairy, my labs were never good. So it works for my family and plenty others. And I would have to disagree about your statement, “Consider this – if the most sustainable is eating locally grown foods, whether meat or plants, then the opposite means that it is the least sustainable.” However thats whats great about America, we can all do our own thing, if we choose.

            May 4th, 2015 5:19 pm
          • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

            No B12, true vitamin A or Vitamin D in plant foods. If you think it is or read that there is on a vegan website, it is wrong. Beta carotene is not Vitamin A nor is very much converted in the body and those with any sort of autoimmune issue probably don’t convert any at all. Vitamin D is not in any plant foods either .. except minute amounts in mushrooms grown in the sun. Certainly not enough for health. And no B12 either .. the B12 in kelp is a B12 analog that the body can’t use. If you think supplements will help … they are synthetic versions of the real thing. Oh and no vegan cultures ever existed on earth. Ever. If you think the Hunza were vegan (like vegan propaganda websites claim), oops, they weren’t.

            Have fun … check in with us in a few years. By the way, the first sign of problems for vegans is rampant tooth decay.

            May 4th, 2015 6:34 pm
        • Amanda Johnston

          Seeing as it won’t let me respond to your last comment, I will just do it here. Vitamin A is 100% found on plant foods. Just one cup of spinach has 2813.1 IU of it, and one cup of kale has 1598.4 IU. So I don’t understand why you would think plants don’t have vitamin A, that was a new one for me. Also vitamin D comes from the sun. However it is also found for one example in Maitake mushrooms, 1 cup is 393% of your recommended daily IU coming in at 786.1 Also vitamin B-12 is bacteria, simple as that. We live in a super clean world now a days, so heavy meat eaters can also be lacking vitamin B-12. Just like I use to be deficient in it when I was eating loads of meats. Also to talk about teeth, I recently just had my yearly check up, and they didn’t even have to clean my teeth, they said they were in perfect condition. So, It looks like my dental health is A OK. I seriously can’t believe that you come off so bashing against a vegan diet. Did you know that the World Health Organization and the UN both say that a Vegan diet, of a whole food plant based diet is completely healthy. Hummm… So maybe just maybe, the human body can thrive on different types of diets. I will check back in with you 30 years down the road. 😉

          May 4th, 2015 6:50 pm Reply
          • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

            Oh dear, Amanda. You have been totally sucked in haven’t you. There is no vitamin A in plant foods! It is labeled as vitamin A which the FDA allows but it is all as carotenes which must be converted by the body to true Vitamin A. And, guess what? The conversion doesn’t happen very efficiently even with the best digestion in the world. And, for many people, it doesn’t happen at all.

            May 4th, 2015 9:44 pm
  • ana

    I just want to say that Veganism is the most nutrient way to live. You can find EVERYTHING on the nature without eating animal products.´
    Most of the nutrients you can also find them in SPIRULINA, a water plant that is amazing.

    January 12th, 2015 6:17 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Oops, not Vitamin D or Vitamin A. Beta carotene isn’t true vitamin A. There hasn’t been a SINGLE CULTURE IN HUMAN HISTORY that ate vegan. Zero, Nada. There’s a reason for this … you become infertile and the culture dies out. Animal foods are critical for the fat soluble vitamins needed for hormone production.

      January 12th, 2015 7:26 pm Reply
      • Avafae

        I became a Vegan 26 years ago I am also a mother of healthy children who are now strong adults.

        I have not had so much as a cold ever since I became a Vegan and my children have never been unwell either. It is not because we were born healthy because I used to get colds and flu etc before I became Vegan . Also my brothers and sisters do get sick as did my parents.
        My brother was the youngest of 8 and he died and my parents are dead all from illness and they ate meat. My sister is alway ill and she eats meat.

        Yet my Vegan friends are fit and healthy as are my Veggie friends they all look 20 years younger than they should.

        I am a bad Vegan I have never looked into replacing vitamins I just stopped eating dairy and meat I am not saying that it is a good idea I am lucky. Everyone should take vitamins or replace them I am just saying I feel great so why is that?

        Start off as a Veggie and replace your vitimins etc along the way and eventually you will become Vegan and it is a healthy way to be.

        I go to Box Fit twice a week and I run and I am not young but I am very fit. It is better than eating the flesh of dead animals and all their illness.

        February 5th, 2015 9:03 am Reply
        • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

          Any grandchildren? Children raised vegan would likely have major fertility problems.

          February 5th, 2015 11:06 am Reply
          • Alexandra Schneider

            Vegans are often the most fertile actually!
            I think you need to do a bit more research, preferably using medical research papers and peer reviewed medical journals. Books are often biased or used as a selling point for the authors diet, which nullifies some of your arguments.
            I get all of my nutrients eating a plant based diet, and ensure by entering my food intake into Cronometer.
            I’ve also seen many children (not my own, I’m too young) grow up vegan to have kids that are also happy and thriving!

            March 20th, 2015 1:22 pm
          • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

            You need a history lesson. Read Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.

            March 20th, 2015 3:21 pm
      • Simon

        Sarah, you do of course realise that a simple multivitamin tablet will solve all of the problems you raise. Thus one can be vegan and not deficient in any nutrient. Also your criticisms do not apply to vegetarian diets at all, only vegan ones.

        February 19th, 2016 11:12 am Reply
        • Sarah

          Does it not strike you as odd that supplements are REQUIRED to maintain minimal health for a vegan? How then can veganism in any way viewed as natural … when one cannot be healthy subsisting naturally on that diet? And, I wouldn’t rely on a synthetic, lab derived multivitamin for my health. Scary scenario indeed!

          February 19th, 2016 11:19 am Reply
    • T33CH


      So what you are saying is that your are getting more nutrients now than when you were eating meat? How can eliminating a major source of complex biochemicals (from meat) lead to more nutrients in your diet? You do know that plants and animals are different right? Animals have more complex components and compounds that are unique and more bioavailable to humans.

      May 4th, 2015 12:47 pm Reply
  • Ella

    There is a very good book called “eat right for your blood type”. I suspect you will find different people are genetically geared to benefit from different diets… There is no one answer for everyone.

    December 13th, 2014 5:38 am Reply
  • michelle

    Can anyone verify any legitimate studies that show that vegans fare worst than others? I’m very skeptical about the few examples listed in the comments section. I can give plenty of examples of meat-eaters that are chronically sick. I do not believe this is simply cause and effect. That is way too simplistic. What is true is that our planet is chronically sick and we need to explore other more sustainable options. One doesn’t need to go far to understand more about this – the documentaries, Cowspiracy, Food Inc., and Forks over Knives are great examples. I thank anyone who chooses this path because they are leaving a smaller carbon footprint and they are doing the compassionate thing for all of us. I know many vegans and vegetarians who enjoy a healthy life. Yes, it may take work, can’t just live off of tortilla chips and black coffee..

    According to The American Journal of Clinical Medicine, being vegan and vegetarian has many benefits.


    Vegans are thinner, have lower serum cholesterol and blood pressure, and enjoy a lower risk of CVD. BMD and the risk of bone fracture may be a concern when there is an inadequate intake of calcium and vitamin D. Where available, calcium- and vitamin D–fortified foods should be regularly consumed. There is a need for more studies on the relation between vegan diets and risk of cancer, diabetes, and osteoporosis. Vitamin B-12 deficiency is a potential problem for vegans, so that the use of vitamin B-12–fortified foods or supplements are essential. To optimize the n–3 fatty acid status of vegans, foods rich in ALA, DHA-fortified foods, or DHA supplements should be regularly consumed. Vegans generally have an adequate iron intake and do not experience anemia more frequently than others. Typically, vegans can avoid nutritional problems if appropriate food choices are made. Their health status appears to be at least as good as other vegetarians, such as lactoovovegetarians. (Other articles in this supplement to the Journal include references 83–109.)

    November 2nd, 2014 9:21 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      I can tell a vegan just by shaking their hand or looking at their face. Cold fish handshake. Pale, no color face.

      November 3rd, 2014 9:14 am Reply
      • Celina

        I can say the same for big meat and dairy consumers.
        You should checkout ‘freelee the banana girl’, ‘durian rider’ or even the couple happy healthy vegans on youtube. These are all very active, fit mid-aged individuals who have been vegan for many many years.

        November 17th, 2014 12:09 am Reply
        • Amanda Johnston

          I love Happy Healthy Vegan, they rock! Glad I am not the only one :)

          May 3rd, 2015 10:46 pm Reply
          • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

            Happy, Healthy Vegan is a bit of an oxymoron, don’t you think?

            May 4th, 2015 9:10 am
  • Sara H.

    Sadly, my friend was a vegan for 25 years -she died recently from cancer that had metasticized all over her body- 122 tumors. Her doctor said it was more than likely due to a b12 deficiency. I think being vegan is a slow death and most people give up on the diet before they ever get to that point. And one point I want to make to the vegans-most b12 tests only test for total b12-that includes inactive b12 that your body cannot utilize. So while your numbers may look great the actual active b12 can be very low putting you at an increased risk of cancer-but it will take some years to show up.

    September 23rd, 2014 2:09 pm Reply
    • Indiah

      I know of no cases of someone dying from cancer because of B12 deficiency. They can however, be at an increased risk of cancer if they have too much B12.

      December 2nd, 2014 7:04 pm Reply
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  • April

    I have 2 autoimmune diseases diagnosed in January 2012. I live in Boston area. Have been to a number of specialists at Mass General Hospital and Lahey Clinic. Western Medicine has no valuable advise to offer. Then I went to a holistic doctor who told me how to eat right to recover. Mostly all autoimmune sufferers need extra B12 every day. The foods highest in B12 such as liver..seafood…raw milk have brought me great improvement in my illness. I was told to eat like my grandmother did. She was from Ireland. Drank goat’s milk..ate get the picture. I eat animal protein at every meal and even though I am told that my cholesterol is higher than they would like the only way I can manage my disease without medication is by eating these animal proteins. When I ate low protein my hair was falling out by the handfuls. So with that said…the proof is in your body. I am thriving on animal proteins…raw milk..raw cheese..grass-fed liver…wild salmon. I am on one medication for my thyroid because the disease has already caused damage to this gland otherwise I feel food is my medicine.

    September 15th, 2014 4:25 pm Reply
  • Loren

    Hi Sarah, Another great article about traditional food! I eat eggs, pastured meat and wild-caught fish as well as lots of organic plant foods, but recently while working from home I started getting mid-day brain fog. Maybe I have a nutrient deficiency, or maybe I don’t get enough exercise or sunlight. Anyway, I started taking supplements every morning: Vitamin D, Magnesium, and B12. I think one of those helped get rid of my brain fog but I’m not sure which. And now I’m wondering, is it bad to supplement with Vitamin B if you already eat meat and fish regularly? Can you get too much B12?

    September 15th, 2014 2:06 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      B12 is water soluble as are all the B vitamins so any excess is flushed out in the urine.

      September 15th, 2014 5:21 pm Reply
    • jeanne

      I’m willing to bet it’s the magnesium that helped. Most people are severely deficient in magnesium and magnesium helps the body to absorb vitamin d. I’ve also been reading that you shouldn’t take vitamin d (which I’d actually a hormone) supplements unless it is in the form of something like cod liver oil.

      November 8th, 2014 12:18 pm Reply
  • M

    Hi Sarah,

    I think your article is based on insufficient research and very misleading. I have been a vegetarian for the last 15 years and suffer from no deficiency what so ever.

    As your website is supposedly ‘ healthy…’ I can only request you to be more responsible with your posts/ information.

    September 15th, 2014 8:40 am Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Um, vegetarian is VERY DIFFERENT than vegan.

      September 15th, 2014 9:27 am Reply
  • Debbie

    I would also like to add that if you want to follow the advice or lifestyle of a beautiful celebrity, why not give equal time to Jennifer Lopez:
    And if she’s not good enough for you, try this list of famous vegetarians :

    September 15th, 2014 12:40 am Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Once again, this article is about *vegans* not vegetarians.

      September 15th, 2014 9:30 am Reply
  • Emily

    Oh, yeah, Angelina Jolie, rarely the best picture of health, states that she wasn’t getting enough nutrition and contributes a thick, juicy steak as her big secret to beauty. It would be easier to believe that her lack of nutrition was based on the fact that she did NOT eat responsibly. Being vegan or vegetarian, does not only mean eliminating meat from your diet. It’s not complicated, but eating a well-varied, plant-based diet with plenty of vitamins and minerals and augmenting that with high quality supplements will take you from feel okay to feeling crazy fabulous with the blood test to back it up. It goes without saying that diet alone will not get your there. Due diligence includes exercise, quality sleep, skin brushing, sauna, sunlight, etc. Angelina Jolie is a great actress, but definitely not my source for inspiring great health.

    September 14th, 2014 12:24 pm Reply
    • Of Goats and Greens

      I am just wondering… if I am eating nutritiously and have no particular medical problems indicating otherwise, I shouldn’t need to take supplements (other than Vitamin D3,since that’s mostly sun-derived, and I can’t be out during working hours soaking it in). I do, however, get your point — I have no idea how Jolie was eating, or eats now. Being a vegan, vegetarian, or omnivore covers a lot of ground. I also don’t believe any one given dietary plan fits everyone. You do what works for you.

      September 15th, 2014 6:52 pm Reply
  • tz

    It is possible to go 100% vegan and yet get all the nutrients. For an extreme example, read “Finding Ultra” – someone who became an ultra marathon/triathlete and only eats vegan.

    That said, there is an interesting twist to his tale. He plateaued and wasn’t getting much healthier when he was eating vegan “junk food”. You can find “vegan” sweets, chips, candy bars.

    Then he switched to real food, and he carefully controls what he eats, and eats a lot of things that for me would be exotic. He makes everything he eats count, so he has all the nutrition.

    Note many “Vegetarians” are lacto-ovo vegetarians, so eggs and dairy can add most things.

    Bad food seems to coincide with highly processed, and GMO, and factory farming (of either animals or vegetables).

    Those that eat properly raised animal products are healthy.

    Those that eat a good and carefully balance diet of only good vegetables are healthy.

    Others eat bad food, and then try to take medicine and supplements and go through a lot of effort just to stay well.

    September 13th, 2014 2:40 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Sorry, but it is *impossible* for a human being get all necessary nutrients eating only plant foods which is why *no* traditional culture ever ate this way. Zero. Nada.

      September 13th, 2014 3:05 pm Reply
      • Josella Rosella

        Great answer, Sarah. I have purchased your book on fats , and I sure know now where to spend my money on healthy fats. Thank you for your book on fats, and if you ever write a book on the health of protein sources ( eggs, cheeses, meats, fish, etc ), I’d buy and love that too. I admire you very much, and I also have learned a lot about food preparation from your videos.

        September 14th, 2014 11:10 pm Reply
        • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

          That’s a great idea Josella! I hadn’t considered that before :)

          September 15th, 2014 9:31 am Reply
          • Pearl

            I would LOVE such a book too, Sarah…

            September 18th, 2014 7:19 pm
      • athletic_vegan

        Veganism isn’t a call to traditional diets; it is a response to the current industrial paradigm. The simple fact is that it is impossible to provide the entire population of the world, let alone the USA, with animal products without using the factory farm model.

        The factory farm model is the most damaging human agricultural system of all time (besides the environment, just look at the health of someone who works somewhere along the production line). And it’s most intensive culprit is animal product production.

        I dream of a world with bountyful wildlife and healthy waterways teaming with fish where humans live in balance with the ecosystem and seasons (eating animal products where necessary) but that’s simply not the reality.
        99% of the animal products consumed in the Western world come from the factory farm.

        I have been a vegan for four years now and a vegetarian for life, never eating meat. I’m a 6 foot 3, 190 lbs professional athlete with no chronic health issues. I use supplements and people may see that as unnatural, but if you believe that the animal products we readily consume are “natural” then you’re living in a fantasy.

        Traditional diets are wonderful, but we’ve destroyed such a possibility. When our traditional diet and health is based upon the destruction of the environment and subjugation of less privileged people, it is a fallacy. We can’t have a healthy diet living somewhere breathing polluted air and drinking toxic water. Or with our neighbors sufdering the effects of animal product production…

        We can’t be so closed minded, everything is connected and we must see that the links between things are acutally more important than the things themselves.

        November 12th, 2014 8:50 am Reply
        • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

          Don’t agree and I don’t support industrial farms anyway. It is totally possible to eat healthy and not be a vegan or destroy the world. Don’t sacrifice your health for an unattainable and unrealistic ideal. Martyrdom doesn’t solve anything.

          November 12th, 2014 9:02 am Reply
          • Lori

            So you don’t believe in industrial farms, that’s good but do you actually think we can feed the world on a grass fed diet of beef and dairy? There is no way even if they cleared all the forests for grazing land. Think it would take something like 5 planets to feed the growing population on a meat/dairy diet.
            Even in the US everyone couldn’t eat a diet of grass fed beef, just not enough land. People must cut down on all meat/dairy consumption for the good of our one and only planet! Watch the film Cowspiracy.

            December 10th, 2014 11:37 pm
  • Colette

    Im vegan but im 6 months pregnant and my white blood cell count is extremely high. They are investigating. Is there anyway my vegan diet could cause damage? All my other blood work is fine

    July 2nd, 2013 10:15 am Reply
  • Ms Vanilla Rose

    First of all, veganism has NEVER been about “avoiding meat from CAFOs”. To claim that is insulting the intelligence. As are the nutritional claims made in this post. Most people get their Vitamin D from sunlight, not from food. The human body makes its own Vitamin A. Vitamin B12, although vital, is available in many vegan foods, it’s in Marmite for crying out loud. It’s available in the tiniest corner shop.

    Angelina clearly likes the taste of meat. That is no reason for supposedly well-informed people to spread scare stories about veganism.

    I have been vegan for 21 years. I work out every week. I’m a blood donor.

    Please stop with the misinformation campaign.

    May 18th, 2013 1:57 pm Reply
    • DRK

      I have friends that are vegan. When they spend the weekend at my house I have noticed that they spend a lot of time in the bathroom, use a huge amount of bath tissue, and are afflicted with flatulence.

      September 14th, 2014 9:16 am Reply
  • Bozz

    I’ve been a vegan for 7 years. A very strict one at that. I don’t even eat honey (not because I am necessarily opposed, simply because I have gotten a lot of conflicting information over the years on its production and haven’t been able to sort it all yet to my satisfaction). Anyway, that being said, my parents have insisted (as parents do) on me getting nutritional blood tests every year to make sure I wasn’t becoming deficient in anything. I have obliged them because they offered to pay for it. Not only have I never been deficient in anything, I’ve actually become much healthier overall and, though I try to eat a relatively balanced diet, I’m not really one to split hairs over my food intake and, at times, have had a pretty atrocious diet out of financial necessity. In response to the above claims of deficiency, nutritional yeast and foods fermented with a scoby are rich enough in B12 to keep me going fine. Likewise, I have never had an issue with vitamin D and I live in the NE of the US, with fairly grey dreary winters. Vitamin A I’ve never even thought about, as there are tons of plant-foods rich in it, for some examples: (this is by no means a conclusive document or study, but it does give accurate raw data if you care to read further). Moreover, I’ve seen marked decreases in blood pressure, cholesterol, fat retention, stomach-aches, head-aches and illness since I became a vegan. I used to get ill every year, now I’m glad to say, I get a little cold, maybe every 1 1/2-2 years, which generally clears up within a week without any additional medication. This is good for me, since I’m more or less allergic to modern medicine (fixed drug reactions to NSAIDs, Penicilin, Cephalosporin, Ceclore, Sulpha, the entire ‘cycline’ family of drugs, and bactrim). I know I can only be counted as anecdotal evidence here but damn. I also have a lot of vegan friends who could give similar testimonies.

    That all said, I don’t think veganism is for everyone or that it will, on its own solve ANY issue. It is a passive life choice I have made in an effort to be more cognizant of what goes into my body and where it comes from. I also did it because I find it unconscionable to consume animals, as if my life held some exceptional value over theirs, such decisions are not mine to make, that is best lest to the ecology of the planet and, perhaps, if it can shed some of its anthropocentric baggage, that of history as well. Veganism is not a tenable sustainable solution for people in extreme climes such as dessert or tundra. Coincidentally though, these are the least populated climates.

    February 13th, 2013 12:15 am Reply
    • Bozz

      Oh and for some perspective. I work in a busy YMCA and middle-school around kids all day long. So I am DEFINITELY exposed to all kinds of illnesses, especially this winter. Disclosing that, I am literally, the ONLY person on a staff of 30+ who hasn’t had a lick of illness this season. Again, anecdotal, but compelling I think.

      February 13th, 2013 12:18 am Reply
    • K

      Greetings from one NE vegan to another. I stand in your assertions that veganism is definitely a lifestyle in which one can thrive. I have been vegan coming on a year now and strength train 6x a week supplemented with HIIT cardio and long distance running. Needless to say I am VERY active and by no means has veganism put a damper on my workouts. I feel better, look better, and train better.

      April 14th, 2016 8:33 pm Reply
  • gabrielamasa

    The author above is clearly under the payroll of the livestock industry.
    With regards to organically raised meats, here’s a two-cents worth from some health experts and clinical researchers based in the US: Animal products, however they are produced, increase the risk of many diseases.
    While concentrations of some contaminants may be decreased, switching to organic meat does nothing to decrease the risk for the diseases that remain the biggest killers of Americans. Cholesterol, fat (especially saturated fat), and animal protein are the major culprits in meat that are associated with higher risks of heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers. They are also associated with the development of the many risk factors that lead to these diseases, including obesity and hypertension.

    January 17th, 2013 5:13 am Reply
    • Rob

      Dude, get with the awareness out there. Saturated fat and cholesterol don’t lead to heart disease or diabetes. Processed foods, specifically processed carbs are the main factor.

      That choice of argument is bunk.

      September 14th, 2014 9:07 am Reply
    • Of Goats and Greens

      One, it’s not switching to organic meat (which is still often CAFO), it is switching to meat raised out on the field for an entire lifetime. This may or may not be technically organic. Two: if Sarah were in the pay of the meat industry, she’d be pushing CAFO. Anyhow, after I went to a Real Food approach, getting rid of that highly processed stuff, my cholesterol remained the same but my triglycerides and my HDL/LDL ratio improved vastly. And addition, one new study over a large group of people show that fats (other than trans fats) are heart healthy and better for a diet program, over a high carb diet. No, nothing is truly definitive yet, but most of those old High Cholesterol Diets are Bad for You were conducted using *gasp*! hydrolyzed cholesterol. Definitely (like TVP) NOT real food.

      September 15th, 2014 6:37 pm Reply
  • Vic Torino

    I like bacon

    January 16th, 2013 8:21 pm Reply
    • gabrielamasa

      in case you finally decide to go healthy, check out veggie strips that are crispier and cruelty free (bean curd are actually tastier if cooked right). Check (type your location) and find out delicious-tasting food that are better than bacon. Have fun, Vic!

      January 17th, 2013 5:07 am Reply
      • Nitin

        Hey veggie strip, you are not exactly saving the planet by promoting grains which destroy eco systems and require massive inputs of energy and pesticides. Industrial agriculture has been the most damaging practise to eco systems and please read Cows can save the planet. Oh and I will stick with bacon. Your KoolAid doesn’t cut it for me.

        September 24th, 2014 4:35 pm Reply
        • Alexandra Schneider

          It takes significantly fewer resources to cultivate grains than it does to support livestock.

          March 20th, 2015 1:33 pm Reply
          • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

            This is the myth of modern monocropping agriculture which is destroying our environment … if you have the right kind of mixed use farms, which is the way it is supposed to be … animals and agriculture mutually support each other and don’t harm the environment.

            March 20th, 2015 3:20 pm
          • SarahG

            Oh dear Alexandra, learn something about farming! I’m so sick of vegans/vegos touting claims who have never even set food outside of a city. Drive through a wheatbelt sometime and see how labour and resource and petrochemical intensive an activity monocrop farming really is, and watch how many animals die in the process. I live in sugarcane country, and see it daily.

            Cows don’t need much, besides good soil, grass, sunshine, water and love. Good soil means minerals & biological activity, which means grass farmers (aka good grassfed cattle farmers) actually need to manage their farms in a holistic natural way of nutrient cycling, that puts good stuff back in, and creates a closed loop of land and animal health. Cattle farming (not CAFO) is not simply rape & pillage, destroy and deplete the way crop farmers often do. Large scale monocropped grains are factory farmed. Small scale holistic cropping practices are still a long way from economical production of grains any other way.

            August 13th, 2015 8:56 pm
  • Bernie

    Eating meat must also contribute to the functioning of the brain that controls good manners, from the comments on this page, it is evident that vegans lack manners as well as vital vitamins. They are just rude!!!

    December 23rd, 2012 4:05 am Reply
    • gabrielamasa

      Bernie: that’s not rudeness you see among vegans. That’s conviction based on sound science. You will have to read tons of medical and science journals next time before posting that comment. If you read more, you will understand why those vegans defend plant-based nutrition with conviction. Look for studies that show that too much meat can damage the frontal lobe of the brain (the seat of decision making). Animal protein is listed among the risk factors for Alzheimers and other brain-related diseases. Another helpful information: Mad cow diseases attacks the brain of the cows and other bovine livestock.
      Cardiovascular diseases also originate from animal products. Cholesterol and saturated fat are found mainly in animal products. This explains progressive thinking clinicians and enlightened health care practitioners prescribe diet excluding red meat, poultry, and fish, virtually eliminating cholesterol and animal fat.
      And no, it is not veganism that almost killed Angelina Jolie. it is ignorance and poor nutrition. The title of the article is misleading.

      January 17th, 2013 5:02 am Reply
      • Rob

        And who defends the plants?

        September 14th, 2014 9:10 am Reply
      • Rob

        Btw, minus mad cow disease, processed carbs and refined vegetable oils are the main culprits in Alzheimer’s and cardiovascular disease. Saturated fat and cholesterol do not contribute to heart disease.

        As far as mad cow disease, it stemmed from a pesticide to kill a specific kind of fly that hangs out near cows. This pesticide created a mineral imbalance and toxin overload that lead to mad cow disease. It was a big cover up in England, b/c farmers got pissed at the government for initially enforcing this pesticide. Then when mad cow started, the government enforced mass slaughter of the farmers livestock. Even cows that were in neighboring farms that showed no symptoms were slaughtered.

        September 14th, 2014 9:21 am Reply
      • Healhty Omnivore

        Ahahahhaha… Aahahahahahahahahaa!!!

        That was really funny. You know that every cell of your body requires cholesterol, right?

        April 21st, 2016 11:10 am Reply
  • Anonymous

    I’d like to add that Angelina doesn’t exactly look her best in these recent years. Actually, she’s kind of repulsive.

    April 29th, 2012 1:10 am Reply
  • Anonymous

    I too, have read and heard about many vegans, especially raw vegans who have reversed diseases and are at the best health of their lives. Like others have stated, veganism did not almost kill Angelina, it was her lack of nutrition. All you corpse munchers need to do yourself a huge favour and read the book “The China Study” or even watch the documentary “Forks Over Knives” and “Food Matters.” It’s possible to live without dead animals lying around in your morgue (aka fridge) and instead fill it up with fresh veggies and fruits. The key is to educate yourself about proper nutrition.

    April 29th, 2012 1:08 am Reply
  • Gabriela Masa

    it’s also an irresponsible statement to say juicy steak is her beauty secret… what about healthy vegetarian women who have glowing, youthful skin because of improved circulation and low artery clogging cholesterol levels? seriously, who believe in this s–t that a steak could make you stay young? this is full of B.S.

    April 21st, 2012 6:11 am Reply
    • Rhianna

      It is not cholesterol that is clogging arteries. Inflammation in the body irritates the inside of the arteries, and thus the body lays down plaque made of cholesterol to “band aid” the arteries. So, cholesterol/plaque is merely a symptom rather than a cause. What causes/drives the inflammatory response? Refined carbohydrates, grains, sugars, refined vegetable oils, alcohol, smoking…it is a shame that many vegetarian/vegan diets are grain/carb based. Not everyone handles starches well and this can contribute to inflammation.

      September 22nd, 2014 4:51 pm Reply
  • Gabriela Masa

    Angelina’s statement that veganism almost killed her is misleading. it should be poor nutrition almost killed her. Veganism cannot kill you unless you’re not nutritionally educated. How will you explain several generations of vegan families all over the world who happen to be healthy? How will you explain the existence of vegan athletes/olympians? How will you explain diseases reversed through a plant-based diet? Angelina thought that she just had to memorize a script, and she’d be ok. The article should’ve interviewed nutritionists/dietiticians since it’s a health related story. I couldn’t help but think you’re on the meat industry’s payroll. Sorry.

    April 21st, 2012 6:07 am Reply
    • Victoria

      I would really enjoy seeing photographs and reading the stories of these “generations” of vegan families, of which you speak. I would love to see what most the vegans I’ve come across are doing “wrong.” I have only met young vegan children of mothers who were not raised vegan (only one was raised vegetarian, but had been vegan for some time).

      Simply from the teeth and bone structure of these children (both a raw chef/educator mom and normal low sugar/normal grains type vegan) that I’ve met, I would highly doubt that any “several generations” of healthy vegans exist. In the first generation the low sugar ones have crowns and serious caries. The raw one has less severe cavities, but the narrowing of the jaw is amazing considering the beautiful straight teeth (no braces they say) of the parents. The raw children are also extremely small considering how tall of parents they came from. They are smaller than children many years younger than them. It’s hard not to worry about them.

      April 28th, 2012 3:14 pm Reply
      • Stephanie

        I counter your ONE single vegan family with my ONE single vegan family and cancel yours out. Both of my vegan since conception children have always been healthy weights (8lbs, 1 oz and 7 lbs, 10 oz at birth, respectively). My first has been in the 98%+ for height since aged six months. My youngest is in the 75%+ for height. Both are well above the 50% for weight and are healthy, active children. Neither one of my kids are loaded with cavities or have ever had crowns. My oldest might be headed for braces, like MOST of her omnivore friends…but let’s just blame that on all veganism, right? Perhaps this one single family you referenced isn’t particularly careful about their dental hygiene? Oh, no… it must definitely be veganism, because you just know it.

        April 22nd, 2013 10:48 am Reply
        • Coolio

          Read Weston A Price – Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Their jaws are not growing, probably because of a lack of human growth hormone caused by excessive carbohydrates.

          September 21st, 2014 3:15 pm Reply
      • Liesbeth

        My son was raised on a varied diet, with dairy, eggs, meat etc, I ate as an omnivore while pregnant.
        Yet, his bones aren’t good, his teeth have caries.
        So what is the link between vegan and teeth and bones??
        I was raised on a meat based diet with loads of dairy.
        Yet, I have bad joints and bones…
        Yet, I have vit. D3 deficiency.
        Yet, I have Always had auto imune disease.

        Now I’m switching to vegan.
        I was vegetarian for a while,with a slip here and there.
        But, I’m sure as hell more healthy now, don’t need many more supplements compared to two years ago,feel overall much healthier and better.

        My son doesn’t eat much candy either, so that’s not the reason for his caries.

        August 22nd, 2015 5:28 am Reply
  • Meghan

    Sarah, I am actually quite sadded to read this post. I was starting to like your website. I think its unfair of you to quote a celebrity as a reason for not going Vegan. When in truth many vegans like angelina jolie are probably not eating a well balanced plant based diet. Most modern vegans only see the ethical part of being vegan, which dont get me wrong, is a FABULOUS place to start. However swapping vegan cream cheese and vegan bacon and living off tofu, tofurky and the majority of other processed “vegan” foods is just as bad for you as eating bacon and turkey. I would agree, if you are going to eat meat, pick a local, grass fed, organic, pasture raised and humanely treated animal for consumption. But as a person who eats a mainly 90% plant basd vegan diet, I am perfectly healthy, not pale and sickly and feel the best I have ever felt. My body feels alive and I dont need to eat animals to do it. I would also encourage you to expand your knowledge and read things such as the the recent Harvard University study which shows eating red meat WILL decrease your life span. Or read articles from Michael Greger, M.D., ( who breaks down medical fact, or that of Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, of the world renown Cleveland Clinic, or his son Rip Esselstyn of the Engine 2 diet, or Dr. Colin Cambell author of the China Study, watch some recent and informative documentaries such as Hungry for Change, or Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, or if you only watch one, please watch Forks over Knives. In closing, please don’t site Angelia Jolie as a reason humans are supposed to eat meat.

    March 30th, 2012 2:59 pm Reply
    • Bozz

      My cousin is a reasonably successful actress/model in hollywood. I have seen the kind of dieting she has to do to remain saleable/solvent. It is horrible, and she really is not even that bad relative to most celebrities. The fasting/diuretics taking prior to shoots, the constant over exercising and low sodium intake, etc. can wreak havoc on your body, just to mention some of the more stand dieting trends there. Angelina Jolie, with all the scrutiny she attracts is surely not immune to these unhealthy trends.

      February 13th, 2013 12:25 am Reply
  • Sarah

    Humans were not designed to eat meat, but we can after some unnatural processing. Vegetarian/Vegan diets are healthier because of our body design in relation to food. Human intestines, like herbivore intestines, are significantly longer to digest plants and were not designed to digest meat. Carnivores have much much shorter intestines so that the meat does not stay in the body too long and start to poison it as it rots. The canine teeth in humans are very misleading. Look at the gorilla- (note: primates are the closest in body design to the human body) they have very large canines despite being vegetarian animals. These teeth are better suited to bite into fruits and plants than animals. In fact, carnivores have claws that they use to hunt which are vital in catching prey. In addition, carnivores have very few molar teeth if any. Animals like horses and humans, have many flat teeth intended for grinding plants. Carnivores swallow more than chew meat. They need the canine teeth to tear meat, not chew it. Humans don’t tear meat. They first cook it (no other animals does this to food, therefore unnatural) then they cut it with an tool like a knife (there goes your whole canine theory) then they chew the meat, not swallow it whole. Then the meat stays in the intestines too long for it to be healthy. That’s why vegetarian people have a significantly reduced risk of cancers related to the colon.
    There is nothing really natural about eating meat. Yes, we can, but our bodies are probably not intended to do so. If you add all the evolutionary evidence and science around the issue, you will start to see that humans are not intended to eat meat like we do. Vegetarianism is healthier and makes more sense regarding our body design. In fact, multitudes of studies of a RAW vegan diet has reversed and Cured people of Type 2 Diabetes, Cancer and many other serious and debilitating illnesses.

    February 21st, 2012 4:37 pm Reply
    • Monica

      Hi Sarah, I just would like to say that you talk like your God, like you are a creator and therefore know how our bodies are supposed to work. There are so many scientific studies to prove and disprove everything, science is always going back and forth so as soon as you think something is correct, they find out more information and everything has to be re-evaluated. I listen to my body, as a nursing mother I have to eat some sort of animal protein in my diet. I have tried eating only organic vegetables that I’ve gotten local and super fresh, some cooked and some raw, and I ate a big serving of them and by one or two hours later I felt awful. I was weak and dizzy and no matter how many times I’ve tried different combinations of the healthiest vegetarian meals I can think of I feel like I’m going to collapse without any meat. I really do think this is due to nursing, because when my body isn’t producing breastmilk I don’t feel fatigued in that way when I consume any type of diet. So should I do as some researchers suggest and eat a raw vegan diet and feel like collapsing when I try to take care of my kids? I’m trying to provide the best milk for my baby and if I feel awful after those meals SOMETHING has to be missing! It comes to the point where I can’t really consider all the research, I just have to listen to my body and my body says to go eat some meat!

      February 25th, 2012 4:03 am Reply
      • Diana

        I’m a nursing mother too and I feel amazing. My son was 24 pounds by age 5 months and he’s very healthy. We both have tons of energy and my pediatrician said he is growing like a weed. My son has never been sick and he’s 14 months now. You can be vegan, nurse, and provide the best milk. I also produce a ton of milk and have never lost my milk production. Eat the right vegan foods and you’ll never lack anything. Sorry if it didn’t work for your body, but I highly doubt it was just from being vegan. I continue to eat right and the 8 years I’ve been vegan, I’ve never ever felt like collapsing. I would go get blood work and check to see if it’s tied to something else.

        September 14th, 2014 12:07 pm Reply
        • sandybt

          I raised my kids on a very conscientious basic (no junk food) vegetarian (vegan for awhile) diet. I thought it was the healthiest way to eat at the time. Now my grown children are all having fertility issues. Since I grew up on an omnivorous diet, my body could get by on vegetarianism for awhile and I myself had no fertility problems. I didn’t realize though what I was doing to my children. We are all recovering now by eating pastured organic animal foods and our health is improving. My experience: just because you feel good and have good energy right now doesn’t mean there won’t be a price to pay later for overriding traditional dietary wisdom.

          September 14th, 2014 4:29 pm Reply
    • Lacie

      Soo…we weren’t designed to eat meat, and yet we have the teeth of an omnivore?

      April 28th, 2012 12:19 pm Reply
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  • D.

    I think Dan, Adam and VeggiesRTasty are being paid by the vegetarians to poke their ideas onto any site/blog talking about the value of meat, dairy and eggs in the diet. They can say what they want, but calling meat sub-optimal just tells me they know nothing about the kind of food we’re talking about here. If you guys are going to criticize the article, please read and try to understand what you’re reading first. Just saying that you know people who have lived a vegan/vegetarian lifestyle with no supplements and they’re healthy means nothing. I know many of those types who are terribly unhealthy. So what?

    I must admit, I don’t understand the interest in a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle, but I don’t intend to subject my body to that kind of insult so it really doesn’t matter. What bothers me is these people stick up for a lifestyle which is clearly lacking in major health components, even though they refuse to admit it. Just skip over their posts as if they weren’t here — that’s my advice to newbie readers. Our brains need animal fats in order to function properly and they are obviously missing those good fats.

    June 4th, 2011 11:13 am Reply
  • veggiesRTasty

    I’m a vegan, and I’m pretty sure that I could out-run the majority of meat-eaters to the SAT test…beat their score…and then proceed to beat the crap out of them while they puke and vomit taco meat. This and all other vegetarian-bashing is total nonsense. Keep eating your lousy sub-optimal meat and looking for excuses and rationalizations, I really don’t care.

    May 30th, 2011 1:30 am Reply
  • babzc

    wikipedia is not research.wikipedia can be written and posted by anyone. i do not mean to sound rude.while one offering may be completely true and backed by footnotes to peer reviewed research, wikipedia is not fact checked. it is not peer reviewed. never reference wikipedia as a point in a debate.

    May 18th, 2011 11:39 pm Reply
  • adam

    I have been vegan 10 years, my wife vegan for 21 years. Never taken supplements and never been deficient. We just take care to eat a balanced diet.

    May 18th, 2011 5:59 pm Reply
  • dan

    some of the healthiest most energetic and kindest people i know are Vegans,. and they don’t take vitamin b12 supplements, in fact they don’t take any supplements at all, just lots of fresh fruit vegetables, nuts and seeds, are you on some sort of meat and dairy payroll?

    May 18th, 2011 3:42 pm Reply
  • Nicole

    Hi Sarah,

    I’m glad to see you include references in your posts. Kudos!

    I was surprised by Dr. Weston’s findings. Jainism, a religion that is founded on the principle of non-violence to all living things, has been around since 900-600 B.C. and many of it’s believers are actually vegan. My husband and I are omnivores and try to eat vegetarian frequently. I wouldn’t even consider a Jain diet. The Jainist commitment to non-violence makes it difficult for them to cause pain to any living thing, plants and micro organisms included. For example, in addition to the vegan diet, Jainism followers refrain from eating any root vegetables. Literature says there are many reasons for this, including that roots give life but also that in pulling up roots you can disturb the small creatures that make their home amongst the roots. A life without carrots or beets?!

    Jains are not known to be fringe members of society. Their libraries are some of the oldest in India and there appears to be many famous and well known Jains. I’m not an expert. I have seen their bird hospital though during a recent visit to India.

    Vegans in the west is certainly a modern and trendy phenomenon but in the East, it is ancient. Your modern research brings me to wonder how all those people managed to keep a balanced diet.

    Food for thought?


    January 5th, 2011 7:54 pm Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      Hi Nicole, thanks for posting this interesting information. Dr. Price did find some vegetarian cultures but their health could not compare to the omnivore cultures which was actually a disappointment to him, believe it or not! If all of the Jainist members were vegan, the culture would have died out from an inability to reproduce within just a few generations. You mentioned that only some ate this way – perhaps the ones that were celibate or the spiritual leaders for example and the ones bearing children ate animal foods.

      January 5th, 2011 8:20 pm Reply
  • Melissa

    Don’t you think it’s rather sensationalist to say that “veganism almost killed Angelina Jolie”? Plenty of people live many, many years on a vegan diet. It was not veganism, but rather poor nutrition, that was a problem for her. Equivocally comparing Jolie’s former diet, which was clearly poorly planned, with all vegan diets lends nothing to the case you are making.

    As for the argument that there were no traditional vegan societies, that’s certainly not a surprise. As a perfectly healthy vegan of nearly a decade, I openly acknowledge that the ability to choose veganism (and still maintain excellent health) is a privileged one. It would be impossible to maintain optimum health on a vegan diet without access to things like nutritional yeast (rich in B vitamins) and hemp foods. Regardless of the health or humane treatment of an animal, I, personally, do not feel comfortable using flesh for food and thanks to the wide variety of options available to me, I can meet my nutritional needs in other ways.

    January 2nd, 2011 7:53 pm Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      These are Angelina’s words, not mine!

      January 2nd, 2011 8:03 pm Reply
    • Ian

      Mellisa. Very well said. Obviously she did not have a good balanced diet. As a vegan myself I know how important is to eat wide range of all veggies and fruits and feeling great about it as I don’t torture poor animals neither do support those killing soul less industries. Btw when we talk about generations,what about India, o.k. not vegan but 75 % of population are vegetarians. The truth is that vegan generations are yet to come and this is the beginning of it. People of past generations were not conscious as much as some of us are now. The fact is we are not meant to eat meat neither out bodies are noy build for that. Have a look at our teeth and hands, do they look like I m gonna go and hunt like a tiger does? I dont think so…:-D we are build to pick up fruits,berries and veggies and eat them all! Peace and greener world to all. Its time to wake up and stop killing innocent animals. And to Angelina,somebody give her kyle,spinach,almonds,coconut etc.and she will be fine, because by having anorexia you cannoy blame even the besy way of eating!

      February 9th, 2014 5:36 pm Reply
    • Rhianna

      It is amazing how Angelina Jolie is blamed for not doing the vegan diet right and therefore failed at it. We don’t really know how Angelina ate when vegan. Everyone is different and not all may succeed on the vegan diet, even if doing it “right.” The “right” diet is different for everyone. Me personally, the vegan diet failed me rather than me fail it. I obsessively researched and spent loads of money on raw vegan supplements and foods that I couldn’t digest which just irritated my system. Felt so much better incorporating pastured animal foods into my diet and letting go of all starches.

      I feel that many vegans will eventually come to this position when their health starts to decline on the vegan diet, which will lead them to wake up from the vegan notion that they are failing the diet rather than the diet failing them.

      September 22nd, 2014 5:46 pm Reply
  • Al

    i am a pure carnivore. Notwithstanding which, i read widely. There is a blog:, which has a page which discusses at length, why vegans should never make a health argument.

    i have the highest respect for the vegan approach to animal rights. I strongly disagree with it, but at least they think about the Big Picture. Your average SAD person, isn’t

    December 15th, 2010 9:40 pm Reply
    • maggie

      you are a pure carnivore? really? i somewhat doubt that you kill animals with your teeth and claws and then consume their flesh, raw.

      March 10th, 2013 1:03 am Reply
  • Ben

    The notion that something having occurred in the past must make it good is an appeal to nature ( and is simply an invalid form of argument, independent of any evidence. Even past that though, is the strong evidence that our omnivory evolved completely independently of health (

    The specific health claims you list can be debunked by looking at the wikipedia page (

    You seem like a good writer, but please do a little bit of research before posting.

    December 14th, 2010 5:10 pm Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      If you believe the American Dietetic Association is a good source for nutritional information, then nothing I say can possibly be of any help to you! The ADA is completely clueless about nutrition .. they hand out 100 calorie snack bags of refined carbs to diabetics in the hospital for heaven’s sake! Refined carbs spike the blood sugar – they don’t stabilize it like healthy, whole fats do! Putting your trust in these Big Pharma, Big Food controlled organizations ensures an eventual disaster for your health.

      December 15th, 2010 10:04 am Reply
      • Gabi

        Actually, recently fats have been implicated in insulin resistance: aside from whole plant based sources, fat is one of the most abundantly and unnaturally consumed macronutrients.

        April 2nd, 2015 12:04 am Reply
    • Kelli

      Wikipedia is a horribly biased source of information thats made some very callous statements towards alternative health and science before. I would never believe them when it comes to health.

      So why are you dismissing nature? You sound like yet another anti-nature reductionist skeptic that refuses to believe nature is actually superior to humans. The apst was better though harder. But hey look at what we gave up for convenience! Now we have an obesity and chronic disease epidemic due to crap food.

      December 20th, 2010 8:09 pm Reply
  • Layale

    It bothers me when peope use the bible to say what a good diet is or is not. The Garden of Eden was good for Adam and Eve, but they sinned and God kicked them out. So, let’s not say their diet, while maybe good for them when they couldnt’ get sick, is still good for us today. The first thing God did when he kicked them out was kill an animal! I’m sorry for sounding so gruff, but I am just so tired of everyone using scripture to make their own way seem right. What about what Paul said, “One person has the trust that will allow him to eat anything, while another whose trust is weak eats only vegetables”. What do vegans say about that? And by the way, Jews were the only ones who were ever under ANY dietary laws anyway. Non-Jews were never under any dietary restrictions.

    December 14th, 2010 4:10 pm Reply
    • Roma

      Nice! Thanks for posting this Layale! My husband and I were just talking about this yesterday! I think what we all need to remind ourselves today is that we are all different in what we need for OUR own bodies as we all have different needs/allergies/issues to address – and to say that JUST veganism or JUST paleo or JUST this or that is right is absurd! BIO-INDIVIDUALITY! My food might be your poison! So let’s all look after what our own body needs, shall we?! And then of course use ur brains and don’t eat junk, processed and refined toxic junk. Just real food that you know what it is and where it comes from!

      September 14th, 2014 10:35 am Reply
      • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

        Yes indeed, we are all different, but the common denominator is that we are omnivores and eating vegan is a recipe for disastrous health over the long term and threatening the fertility of your children and grandchildren. It isn’t all about you and how you feel … it’s about your children’s health too. And for those vegans who say they have healthy children, you didn’t eat vegan as a child did you? This was a choice you made as an adult after you were grown so you had stores of fat soluble vitamins to go on, something your children won’t have if you raise them vegan also.

        September 14th, 2014 1:35 pm Reply
  • Dyan

    What about all the poisons these animals are sprayed with, injected with, they enter the bloodsteam of the beast and we ingest all that….don’t reckon that is being addressed here, the Eden diet given to us at Creation did not include FLESH, it consisted of fruits nuts and grains…………I do eat eggs from my own freerange healthy chooks, and IF I were able to own healthy cows would consider including meat in my weekly diet, but look at the side effects/diseases of the animals and you would think twice….

    December 13th, 2010 5:36 pm Reply
    • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

      I don’t see Angelina eating CAFO steaks from Sam’s by a long stretch! :)

      December 14th, 2010 8:38 am Reply
    • Dan

      You’re fat and giving people nutrition advice?

      Here’s a hint people, take the advice from people living the life you want. If you want to be a fat blogger, than this woman is giving great advice!

      April 23rd, 2012 4:19 pm Reply
    • Meat Eater

      “Eden diet”?? “Creation”? WHAT?

      May 21st, 2013 1:17 pm Reply
  • Pavil, The Uber Noob

    Cattle and other ruminants are truly remarkable creatures. Having access to pastured livestock is a huge blessing. It is a real shame that so many of our traditional livestock have to endure incarceration in hell farms. Almost makes me want to get my own acreage.


    December 13th, 2010 5:14 pm Reply
  • Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

    Welcome Pauline! Glad to have you here! :)

    December 13th, 2010 12:46 pm Reply
  • Pauline Barrett

    I often wonder how the evolution of mammals in the bovine family occurred long ago. They are true vegans. A friend of mine once said that if we were meant to be vegans we would have stomachs like cows.

    Let me introduce myself: though now retired from a career in health-care foodservice administration my degree in home economics from Oregon State U has continued to provide up-to-date nutritional information. In particular, the Linus Pauling Institute “…focuses on the roles of vitamins, essential minerals, and chemicals from plants play in human nutrition and aging…” is my favorite source.

    Though not a dietitian I am asked to provide nutritional advice in our community for newly diagnosed, and frightened, diabetics. They return to me, after their first appointment with a diabetes specialist, reporting that my advice was “right on.” I follow my own advice, and maintain an A1c of 5.6.

    I enjoy this site…. was introduced to it by a Facebook posting.

    December 13th, 2010 12:31 pm Reply
  • Gigi Berardi

    Sarah — great post and I so enjoyed your comments to the Chapter Leaders on the Monday of the WAPF meetings!!! ….Good work! I was inspired to hear the bloggers speak and so I started a new one — on food!!! If you’re following S 510 — please stay posted on current status of S 510 and local food security. See my newest post at:
    Best, Gigi

    December 13th, 2010 3:20 am Reply
    • Carrie willard

      In her newest cook book, Gwyneth Paltrow has also said that her veg diet wreaked havoc with her health, including her bone density and vit D levels and hormones. She was essentially a wreck. I notice that her kids eat plenty of meat as shown by the pictures and anecdotes she writes.

      If celebs like this who can afford the finest quality food, healthcare and personal chefs cannot make a go of strict veg diets, how could the average American?

      September 13th, 2014 3:34 pm Reply

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