10 Vegan Health Myths with Paola Aldana-Reyes, RDN

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Whether you’re new to a plant based diet or you’ve been eating a whole foods diet for years we’ve all fell prey to some common myths. Many of these myths are what keep people from making the change or are the source of the many questions we get an a nearly daily basis. We had the chance to speak with Paola Aldana-Reyes, a registered and licensed dietitian, about these myths. She gave some hard facts to dispel these misconceptions to help you and others break through to a greater understanding of health.

About Paola Aldana-Reyes

Paola is a registered and licensed dietitian, personal trainer, group fitness instructor and certified lactation counselor from Colombia, South America who is passionate about empowering and assisting individuals in improving their health through plant based nutrition and exercise. She has live in the US since 2000 and has been interested in nutrition and healthy living since 12 years old.

As a teenager, Paola’s goal consisted on finding the ideal diet for the human body that would be in line with nature and benefit also the environment and animals. Her health journey began by first following the old school food pyramid guidelines, followed by adopting a kosher diet and then transitioning to pescatarian diet. She finally stumbled upon a vegan and later raw vegan lifestyle about 5 years ago after studying the vegetarian chapter in one of her college nutrition courses.

After successfully transitioning into to a whole food plant based diet, losing weight, clearing up her skin and improving digestive issues, Paola became dedicated to sharing the benefits of a plant based lifestyle to friends, family, and clients. Today Paola dedicates on assisting and counseling patients on developing healthy eating and activity habits throughout the coastal health district of South Georgia. She is passionate about educating and assisting people on reaching their health goals through healthy eating and proper physical activity. She plans on completing a Master’s degree in exercise science and opening or working in a private practice and fitness studio dedicated to illness prevention, weight loss, fitness and assisting individuals in developing healthy relationships with food.

10 Vegan Health Myths

This episode covered quite a bit and Paola provided an amazing amount of information. Below are the myths we discussed. Of course, if you want the details, you’ll need to listen to the show.

  1. The protein myth
    1. Animal vs plant protein
    2. Higher protein doesn’t mean “bigger muscles”
    3. Health halo of added protein
  2. Getting inadequate calcium
    1. Milk is not a good source
    2. Dairy uses calcium and minerals to level the system
    3. Plant sources
  3. Excess carbohydrates
    1. Types of carbohydrates
    2. Fruit is a good energy source
    3. Low carb vs high carb (better for energy)
  4. Not getting enough calories
    1. Veggies are low cal high nutrient
    2. Quality calories
    3. Higher calorie foods
  5. Higher food expense
    1. Low cost ideas (frozen and bulk)
    2. Lower medical cost
    3. Pound for pound veggies are cheaper than animal products
  6. Restrictive food choices
    1. Can have vs can’t have
    2. Simply replacing animal products not the whole meal
    3. Assuming we only eat tofu and salads
  7. Constant bloating & gas
    1. Higher fiber content
    2. Typical when starting
    3. Remedies / “low gas” foods (stepping into diet)
  8. Constant nutrient tracking
    1. Torre Washington
    2. Balanced diet
    3. Quality vs quantity (not eating the same things)
  9. Long term sustainability (fad diet)
    1. Greatly reduces risk of preventable illnesses
    2. Much easier now and getting better
    3. Biology
  10. Supplement requirements
    1. B12 and D3
    2. Omega Fatty acids
    3. Getting levels checked (take lowest levels for imbalance)


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