Staying Fit on a Vegan Diet

When it comes to your overall health and well-being, switching to a vegan diet can provide you with real advantages. However, if you continue living a sedentary lifestyle and ignore your fitness, you will miss most of those advantages. 

There are several benefits associated with avoiding a sedentary lifestyle and taking actions that promote good health. These include having a healthier body weight, sleep better, better energy levels, improved mood, and a reduced risk of health conditions such as diabetes and cellular ageing. Maintaining basic fitness levels can also reduce everyday aches and pains. Evidence suggests good fitness may prevent the decline in mental capacity, which is often associated with ageing. 

To achieve a certain fitness level, you need to strike the right balance between diet and exercise. Although it is easily possible to accomplish this by following a plant-based diet, there are certain things that you need to pay attention to. 

What is a Plant-Based Diet?

In simple terms, a plant-based diet is one in which no products are derived from animals. This means it excludes all of the following:

  • Meat
  • Poultry
  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Dairy (milk, yoghurt, cheese, etc.) 
  • Shellfish
  • Insects
  • Honey

Since all of these products are directly or indirectly derived from animals, they do not belong in a plant-based diet. Instead, this type of diet includes:


Vegetables are or should be, one of the main calories for people following a vegan lifestyle. Everyone could benefit from including more vegetables in their diet. They’re packed with nutrients and fibres and are generally very low in calories. Although some people don’t like the taste of vegetables, it is relatively easy to experiment with colourful ingredients in various dishes until you find or create something you want. 


All fruits are vegan-friendly and are very nutrient-dense. However, they are high in fructose, so the general recommendation is to consume them in moderation. Bananas, apples, oranges, and watermelon are among the healthier fruits you can consume.

Whole Grains

If you’re following a plant-based diet, it is essential to include a sizeable amount of whole grains. Whole grains such as oats, rice, barley, and buckwheat provide a healthy type of carbohydrates to your diet. 


One issue with becoming vegan is that people seem not to fulfill their protein requirements from food. Consuming legumes such as beans, soy, and lentils can help resolve this issue. 

Nuts & Seeds

Not only are nuts and seeds 100% vegan, but they can also be a healthy snack for you. Packing some almonds, walnuts, or pumpkin seeds in a small container to keep with you on-the-go can prevent you from indulging in unhealthy snacks when you’re hungry frequently. 

Knife And Chopping Board Being Used to Slice Vegetables

Getting Protein on a Vegan Diet

If you want to achieve your fitness goals, or even maintain an appropriate fitness level, you must pay attention to your protein intake. 

One of the major concerns people have when switching to a plant-based or vegan diet is whether they will fulfil their protein requirements. Since meat and poultry are usually the most common protein sources for most people, they tend to believe they can’t get enough of this macronutrient from plants; this is false!

Protein is a combination of different amino acids. About 20 amino acids are used by our body to keep our organs functioning and build muscle. However, 9 of these amino acids cannot be produced by our body. All 9 of these amino acids play an essential role in run the metabolism, building and repairing muscle tissues, and helping genes function correctly. Hence, it is crucial to obtain these nutrients through food. Meat contains all 9 of these amino acids.

On the other hand, almost no plant-based food contains all nine of these amino acids. Most plants will generally be missing one or two of these essential amino acids. 

The only vegan food to have all nine together is soy; yet, it doesn’t provide the same biological function as dairy or eggs. 

To overcome this issue, you can mix-up your dietary choices to ensure you are getting all the essential amino acids. 

For instance:

  • Rice is high in the amino acid methionine but lacks amino acid lysine. 
  • Beans are high in lysine but are low in methionine. 

Moreover, the combination of any unprocessed starch (rice, corn, potatoes) with any fruits or vegetables consumed throughout the day will help you overcome any amino acid deficiency. 

A Bunch of Vegetables

You must consume nutrient-dense foods because they will keep you satiated and energized throughout the day. 

On the other hand, a pack of potato crisps is technically vegan, but it is filled with unhealthy calories. Therefore, it won’t help you achieve your fitness goals and only makes things worse. Other unhealthy vegan snacks include french fries, deep-fried cheese balls (made from vegan cheese), vegan meats, Pretzels, Pop-Tarts, tofu deli meal, Doritos, Oreos, frosting, Sour Patches, and other similar products. These types of foods should only be eaten in moderation and not frequently. 

To sum up, becoming vegan will not result in improved levels of fitness. Like any other diet, it requires you to consume healthy food and keep a check on your calories. Ensuring that most of your diet comes from real food and not processed junk, staying fit on a vegan diet should be no problem.