If you are following a vegan or largely plant-based diet, you are at greater risk of certain deficiencies that can cause longer-term health issues. Blood and urine tests will help you to understand if you are getting enough of the nutrients you need. Your Nutritionist can then tailor your diet based on your test results and advise you on where you would benefit from supplementation.
|Basic Vegan Profile: This includes the essential nutrients that are most commonly found to be deficient if you are following a vegan diet|
|Ferritin: Measurement of your iron stores. Iron is best absorbed from animal sources and depletion of iron stores can cause fatigue and low energy|
|B12: This key vitamin is mainly found in animal-source foods and most vegans need to supplement with B12 on a regular basis. Deficiency can present as fatigue, joint pain, memory loss and low mood|
|Iodine: (urine) Iodine is essential for thyroid function and critical in pregnancy. It is mainly found in dairy and fish and many vegans can be deficient|
|Other minerals including selenium, zinc, magnesium (red cell), copper, calcium, manganese and chromium: Mineral absorption is often decreased on a plant-based diet and vegans have the lowest mineral levels that we see in our clinic. It may be necessary to make efforts to optimise absorption of minerals from your food|
|Advanced Vegan Profile includes everything from the Basic Profile with the following additions:|
|Bone turnover test: (urine) Due to poor absorption of minerals, vegans may be at greater risk for decreased bone density and osteoporosis. A bone turnover test assesses your current rate of bone loss so that you can make changes to decrease your risk under the advice of your Nutritionist|
|Vitamins A, C, E and D: The advanced profile also includes analysis of your vitamin levels, essential for general health. Vitamin D is critical for bone health and the immune system and while we get this from sunshine, it is also found in dairy and seafood which are not present in a vegan diet|
|Omega-3 and Essential Fatty Acids: The best sources of omega-3 are oily fish and many vegan diets are critically low in omega-3. This is essential for your immune system, to reduce risk of chronic disease, skin health, eye health, fertility and brain health.|
- Please stop taking all supplements for three days ahead of your blood test
- You need to be fasting for 12 hours in advance of this test. Consume your normal diet ahead of testing
- The test results will be returned to your nutritionist within 3 weeks. Test results will be interpreted by your nutritionist and a protocol tailored accordingly to correct deficiencies as identified.