The Pegan Diet: Benefits and downsides

Anke Neustadt

The Pegan Diet: Benefits and downsides

Expert opinion by
Dr Akanksha Saxena

May 12, 2022, 01:34 pm
3 min read

The Pegan Diet is extremely popular among fitness and health enthusiasts as it lets you eat veggies and meat. (Photo credit: Flickr)

The Pegan Diet is a hybrid combination of the vegan diet that consists of plant-based foods and the paleo diet in which you consume whole foods.

It’s a sustainably produced nutrient-rich diet with 75% nutrition from plant-based sources and 25% from animal-based sources.

Functional medicine specialist Dr. Mark Hyman started the Pegan Diet which balances blood sugar and reduces inflammation while promoting optimal health.

Here is what our expert says

  • The Pegan Diet attempts to combine the benefits of both the Paleo and Vegan diets.
  • Its benefits have been linked favorably with the gut microbiome. A healthy gut microbiome is responsible for strong immunity, reduced incidence of autoimmune disorders, and reduced systemic inflammation.
  • Thereby, it’s been linked with long life, reduced cardiac disorders, the incidence of cancer, and delayed cognitive decline in the elderly.

The Pegan Diet is not that strict as compared to Paleo and Vegan diets. Though it discourages the consumption of highly processed oils, grains, and sugars, you can still have them in small amounts. It strictly discourages consuming dairy products and focuses on eating clean.

The Pegan Diet is loaded with fruits and vegetables

The most beneficial part of a Pegan Diet is that it allows you to consume a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables to maintain a healthy and fit lifestyle.

Consuming fruits and veggies every day will provide your body with the required micronutrients, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and plant compounds.

This will also reduce inflammation and oxidative stress and prevent harmful diseases.

It focuses on food with low glycemic index

The glycemic index is a measurement system that represents the ability of a particular food to increase the level of blood glucose in the body.

The Pegan Diet consists of foods that are low in starch and rank low on the glycemic index.

It makes its followers aware of which food stabilizes blood sugar. This diet is great for diabetes, pre-diabetes, or insulin-related ailments.

It’s not that strict and is environment friendly

While the Paleo Diet has been condemned multiple times for promoting harmful impacts on the environment, the Pegan Diet is the complete opposite and is extremely eco-friendly.

Peganism focuses on sustainability and encourages the consumption of sustainably raised meats and plant-based foods.

It is less restrictive than the Paleo or Vegan Diet as it’s a mixture of two and offers more flexibility and balance.

Difficult to maintain sometimes

While Pegan Diet is less restrictive as compared to vegan and paleo diets but it still prohibits you from eating certain foods which might become a problem sometimes.

It restricts you from consuming dairy, legumes, and grains.

This will make it difficult for you to enjoy the food served at get-togethers. You may also need to get creative with food to prevent burnout.

It lacks potential nutrients and can get a bit expensive

When you are cutting down important food groups like grains, dairy, and legumes, you will be lacking certain key nutrients required by your body.

When on a strict Pegan Diet, you are likely to miss out on vitamin B12, calcium, and iron.

Also, purchasing costly farmer’s market veggies, sustainable produce, and high-end meats daily while on a Pegan Diet can leave you exhausted financially.

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