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Vegan for Life: Everything You Need to Know to Be Healthy and Fit on a Plant-Based Diet

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  1,596 ratings  ·  146 reviews
Are you considering going vegan, but you're not sure how to start? Are you already committed to an animal-free diet, but are unclear about how to get proper nutrients? Vegan for Life is your comprehensive, go-to guide for optimal plant-based nutrition. Registered dietitians and long-time vegans Jack Norris and Virginia Messina debunk some of the most persistent myths about ...more
Paperback, 283 pages
Published July 12th 2011 by Da Capo Lifelong Books (first published July 1st 2011)
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Average rating 4.14  · 
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 ·  1,596 ratings  ·  146 reviews

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Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan
Dec 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all vegans and veg*n interested adults & teens & those who work with vegans of all ages
I consider Ginny a friend, but I can honestly say a top notch job was done with this material; even if I’d never had any personal contact with Ginny I know I’d have respected and enjoyed the book just as much as I did.

This book is absolutely the best book out there for up to date, as of 2011, vegan nutrition. It’s wonderful, full of indispensable information for vegans and vegan interested people at every stage of the life cycle, and those who know them, and those who work with them in various c
Aug 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: health, nutrition
This is a comprehensive book on every aspect of vegan nutrition. The authors are experts, and answer every question one might have about virtually all the nutrients that are considered to be important to health. There are detailed charts that summarize the best foods for the major nutrients. Vegans are always asked questions like, "so where do you get your protein?" and "where do you get calcium?" and so on. The answers are here, along with more serious issues, like vitamin B12.

Keeping in mind t
Mar 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nutrition
This is a great book for anyone interested in eating a vegan diet. Beginners will find everything they need to know boiled down into a single page, on page 88, called "The Vegan Food Guide". People who have been eating vegan diets for a while will find updated nutrition information(the book was just published in 2011), including entire chapters debunking much misinformation and urban folklore about vegan diets. I found the chapters on soy food consumption and the real health benefits of vegan di ...more
Aug 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: vegetarian
Vegan? Thinking of going vegan? Love/like/know a vegan? Want to eat less meat or dairy but not sure how to do it in a healthy way? If so, then you need this book. It's essentially an encyclopedia for all things nutrition-related as they pertain to veganism.

There are entire chapters dedicated to certain vitamins and nutrients. I thought I knew all there was to know about b-12, but I was wrong. They also discuss raising vegan children and being vegan during pregnancy, veganism for the over-50 crow
Tisha (IG: Bluestocking629)
3.75 stars/carrots (there is such a thing, I swear)

I don't think this book by itself would be enough for me to learn everything needed to make this lifestyle change. This book however as a companion book, with the other seven books I purchased, (Amazon and I are on a first name basis) has proven to be very informative.

I felt like this book pretty much told me the "why" but not the "how" to become a Vegan.

The chapter depicting what the farm animals go through on these factory farms was descripti
Jun 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book was exactly what I was looking for.

You'll find a breakdown of what nutrients you need and where to find them; how to adjust a vegan diet for athletes, pregnant women, seniors, babies, and everyone in between; how to read scientific studies on diets and which ones are credible; why to go vegan in the first place.

I liked the lack of fanaticism. Yes, this book will advocate that a vegan diet is the best diet, but it will debunk certain vegan myths and arguments. For example, vitamin B12 i
Andrea Paterson
Mar 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Awesome! This book will answer any question you have about remaining in peak health on a vegan diet. Well researched and extremely thorough, the two dieticians who wrote this book have done their homework and then some. The main premise illustrates the balanced and realistic attitude of the authors: veganism is not a natural human diet and romanticizing it as a perfect diet for human beings does more harm than good. They argue that if people are going to convert to veganism and stick with it the ...more
Mar 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
New vegans (or older struggling vegans): this is the one! The authors, both registered dietitians, are very careful in outlining a healthy vegan diet. They are also very honest, which is helpful on topics like B-12 (and it comes down to the fact that supplements are the most dependable way to go, so why mess with the uncertainty of other sources simply for the notion of being "more natural"?). Some other vegan diet books rely on inconclusive studies with small sample sizes to bolster claims. Nor ...more
May 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Very good book that i would give to someone who's considering switching to a plant-based diet. Not only it discusses all the iterate issues that a vegan can face, but also gives practical guidelines on how to start eating\cooking vegan while keeping daily nutritional needs meet.

However, the book adopts at a dietary school that i don't fully agree with. For example, it suggests that dietary supplements (e.g. vitamin D drops, B12 capsules) should be part of your life as you can't get the required
Serena Long ﺕ
Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: health, nutrition
Making my vegan diet even healthier. The nutrition recommendations in this book which are based on solid, current science are aimed at making your vegan diet healthful and realistic. You will see that it's easy to meet nutrient needs by eating a variety of cooked and raw plant foods. The amount of nutrition information in the media and on the internet is staggering. Much of it is conflicting and often studies looking at the same question come up with completely different answer. ...more
Jul 20, 2011 rated it liked it
I think this is a very important book, and mostly done quite well. It makes it clear that we need to really clean up our diets if want to have optimum nutrition. Unfortunately this message for me, is too depressing, since I'm not able to clean up my diet to that extent, while keeping my calorie count low enough so that I will be as slim as I want. It takes real effort and planning to pack that much nutrition into the 1200 calories I need to limit myself to (on days when I don't exercise), to los ...more
Jul 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
Fantastic. I appreciated the authors' approach: that following a vegan diet is definitely a choice in American culture, and there are very good reasons for it (ethics/morals, health, environmental) and there are very real concerns about nutrition as it relates to the vegan diet. I also appreciated the fact that the authors' are realistic about many things, such as that since a vegan diet is a choice presently, certain biological needs from the past need to be addressed specifically- but they qui ...more
Neil Gaudet
Mar 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
I didn't come to being vegan for animal cruelty issues but instead for health and lifestyle reasons and I found the approach in this book very helpful.

Vegan for life covers nutritional and health issues for vegans in a very solid scientific way. The conversation unveils both the nutritional challenges and benefits of being vegan. Many of the myths are busted in a convincing manner and if followed, the advice in this book should allow vegans to make healthy lifelong choices.

The book does end wi
George Jacobs
Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is full of clearly written, extensively detailed nutrition information. Indeed, the authors fulfil the promise given in the book’s subtitle: “Everything You Need To Know To Be Healthy on a Plant-Based Diet.” ‘Everything’ includes lists of foods, menus, and diet tips for key nutritional needs.
But the main purpose of the book is not to teach human nutrition.
The authors emphasize that vegan nutrition can be easy: “A vegan diet isn’t difficult; it’s
Jul 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vegan-stuff
Very easy to understand, not a lot of "science mumbo-jumbo", mentions most important aspects of a vegan diet and its effects on our health with its strengths and weaknesses; it's not claiming eating vegan automatically makes you immune to all diseases nor that eating meat automatically gives you cancer, diabetes and clamidia, as a lot of vegan advocates seem to believe and spread. Also talks a bit about soy and its weird reputation as of late, busting the myth that soy is terrible for you and yo ...more
Barbara Drury
May 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A comprehensive guide for novices, as well as committed vegans, who are looking for valid scientifically based information to help them to lead a healthier vegan lifestyle or to iron out any confusion about fats/calories/raw foods/soy etc.
I found it to be very informative in terms of advice regarding supplements and fats. Ginny is a registered dietician and so is Jack Norris, so they clearly know what they're talking about.
Marta  Marecka
Feb 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ideas
A very good book if you're interested in going vegan. It's science-based and very honest. It didn't turn me into a vegan, but it taught me much about nutrition and made me follow a more plant-based diet.

Edit: I re-read this, as I attempt to eliminate diary from my diet. I still believe this is an excellent resource, very helpful in the transition to a dairy-less diet
Debbie Brown
Jul 13, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: health-nutrition
A good reminder to eat healthy. Not a pushy book. I don't think I could ever be completely vegan, I love cheese and ice cream! But it reminded me to eat more whole grains and fruits and veggies. Also motivated me to get my garden going. ...more
Apr 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
This one was a fast read for an informative book. I think it would benefit new and more experienced vegans alike, or even someone considering a vegan, plant based lifestyle.
Jon Allanson
Dec 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An excellent resource. Well written and thoroughly researched.
Fred Ayres
Jan 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: vegan
Very thorough book on veganism. Way to go!
Feb 15, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
It is hard for me to review non-fiction books and I also don't have too much time to write this one down, so I'll just list off a few things I liked and those I disliked.

The Good
-In my opinion, the most useful part of this book was the specific quantities needed for each nutrient in your body, and if they suffer any modifications in a plant-based diet, which comes very handy if you want to change your setting in a nutrient-tracking app, such as Cronometer.
-The writers are registered dietitians s
Jul 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, vegan
I have found Ginny Messina's site to be a really helpful resource in learning about vegan nutrition, so when I heard she was co-writing a book with fellow nutritionist Jack Norris, I knew that it would be one I would want to check out. I'm so glad I did!

This book has the same honest, fact-based approach to vegan nutrition that I have come to appreciate from the authors' respective sites. There is a focus on making vegan diets healthy and nutritionally balanced, but they also seek to present veg
Bart Kleijngeld
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An essential (beginner's) guide for going (and staying) vegan for life, providing information for young and old, active and sedentary, pregnant or not.

It is practical, sometimes -although responsibly- prioritizing comfort over addiotional nutritional benefit, with the ultimate goal of keeping one's diet realistic and doable. One example is the recommendation of not having to refrain from the occasional consumption of mock meats, and the embrace of (certain) supplements where they can enhance the
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great comprehensive guide to nutrition for vegans, and read pretty easily. They talk about general nutrition and then go on into specific details for those who might have different nutritional needs like teenagers or people with diabetes, and provide more resources as well. They don’t sugar coat the hard parts of veganism, but still give realistic ways of approaching the lifestyle to overcome difficulties.

I took off a whole star because at the end they talk about the why you should be
Mar 16, 2017 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: vegans, those who are health conscious
I came across this book while watching a vegan youtuber (unnaturalvegan), who makes fantastic points about health myths, while happening to vegan. While I concluded that a vegan diet isn't right for me, this book provided much needed health and nutrition info that's applicable to anyone, not just vegans (such as daily recommended calorie and protein intakes, as well as fantastic sources of many different vitamins, healthy fats, and minerals).

I like that this book is set up in a seemingly progres
Oct 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: boekenplank
Accessible and complete. While I was sceptical due to the "unapologetic pro-vegan" approach to everything, which seemed a bit too good to be true, I cross-referenced with some other vegan books (which were admittedly also written by pro-vegans) and I haven't found any major differences (except for whether there are two types of Vitamin K and whether raw vegan is possible). Moreover, I checked with a dietitian and everything so far has checked out. Would definitely recommend! ...more
Yair Atlas
Dec 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book exceeds at what it sets out to do. If you're considering or have decided on a vegan diet then this book lays out essentially everything you need to know about your nutritional needs at all stages of life. There are plenty of citations. After doing research on some of the more surprising claims in this book I've found that they don't stretch the truth (at least in the situations I looked into. I couldn't look into every single thing). ...more
Jan 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
A fantastic read for anyone curious about veganism, going vegan, or anyone who has been vegan for a while.
It's written by two well-known vegan activists and registered dietitians, so they know what they're talking about. I follow both Jack and Ginny on their social medias and websites- they're always very informed and knowledgeable sources.
Jan 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great guide for new vegans and those otherwise looking for a refresher on nutrition.
Straightforward recommendations that even a college student can manage. After a little over a year of mostly following the advice of this book (among that of other vegans and professionals,) my iron level is doing just fine!
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Not Everyone can make it on a Vegan Diet 6 178 Aug 11, 2011 12:29PM  

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