Zinc supplementation in the treatment of anorexia nervosa.
Revista da Associacao Medica Brasileira (1992). 2021;59(4):321-4
Plain language summary
Anorexia nervosa (AN) is a disorder characterised by significant weight loss, restrictive diets, a search for thinness and a distortion of body image. Zinc is a key micronutrient that plays essential roles in the body including in gene transcription regulation and enzyme reactions. There is a similarity between symptoms of zinc deficiency and AN; namely weight loss, changes in appetite and sexual dysfunction. This review aims to provide healthcare professionals with insight into the nutritional recommendations for zinc in patients with AN. The review suggests that there are clinical studies demonstrating a strong association between AN and low levels of serum zinc and low levels of urinary zinc suggesting a micronutrient deficiency in these individuals. The severity of zinc deficiency is associated with greater weight deficits and longer AN duration. It is also associated with higher levels of anxiety and depression in AN individuals. Zinc is key in smell and taste perception and the brain regions associated with interpreting eating as pleasurable. Reduced food intake and practices like purging and low-zinc diets may exacerbate any low levels and impair zinc absorption. A controlled study showed that oral supplementation resulted in a higher rate of body mass index (BMI) increase and an improvement in neurotransmitters. The review recommends: 1. Check serum levels of zinc in AN patients as it may be low. Zinc status may contribute to eating behaviour including gaining pleasure from eating, smell and taste. 2. Zinc supplementation of 15mg/daily for preventative purposes and 15-20mg/daily if zinc deficiency is identified after testing. The review recommends supplementation for a minimum of 2 months.
The Functional Medicine Approach to COVID-19: Virus-Specific Nutraceutical and Botanical Agents
This document published in December 2020 discusses the mechanisms of action of a number of different botanical and nutraceutical agents. These agents can be considered immunoadjuvants, defined as substances that act to accelerate, prolong, or enhance antigen-specific immune responses by potentiating or modulating the immune response. The aim of this paper is to provide resources for practitioners who are supporting patients going through Covid-19. This article is part one of a series and the link for part two can be found under the section “Background and Introduction”.
Intake and adequacy of the vegan diet. A systematic review of the evidence.
Clinical nutrition (Edinburgh, Scotland). 2021;40(5):3503-3521
Plain language summary
This systematic review investigated vegan diets in the European populations and their adequacy of macro-and micronutrient intake, compared to the recommendations of the World Health Organization. Included were 48 studies and their outcomes regarding protein, carbohydrates, fats and micronutrients summarized. The overall results and their impact on health are discussed in the later sections of the paper. Adequate intake amongst vegans was seen with carbohydrates, fats, Vitamin A, B1, В6, C, E, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, copper and folate. Sodium exceeded recommended intake, whilst protein, Vitamin B2, B3, B12, D, iodine, zinc, calcium, potassium, selenium was of low consumption in a vegan diet. The bioavailability of some nutrients was also acknowledged. In summary, following a vegan diet appears to have positive and negative aspects. A vegan diet profile can contribute to disease prevention with lower incidence rates of obesity, Type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Yet veganism appears to increase the risk for mental health conditions, bone fractures, immune system impairments, anaemias and deficiencies from low nutrient intake. This review yields a comprehensive overview of the positive and negative health consequences of a vegan diet. It may be a useful reference for those looking to support vegans or individuals considering adopting a vegan diet pattern.
Conflicts of interest:
Vegan diets have become increasingly popular in the last ten years. This systematic review of 48 studies investigated the adequacy of vegan diets in European populations. It compared their macro- and micronutrient intakes compared to World Health Organization recommendations. It found that vegan diets tend to be lower in protein and in essential amino acids (lysine, methionine and tryptophan). They
can also be lower in micronutrients especially vitamin B12, zinc, calcium and selenium. However, the lower intakes are not always associated with health impairments.
Implications for practice:
Practitioners should be aware of the potential deficiencies in a vegan diet.
Implications for research:
More research is needed to determine whether lower nutrient intakes in vegans correlated with poor health outcomes.
BACKGROUND Vegan diets, where animal- and all their by-products are excluded from the diet, have gained popularity, especially in the last decade. However, the evaluation of this type of diet has not been well addressed in the scientific literature. This study aimed to investigate the adequacy of vegan diets in European populations and of their macro- and micronutrient intakes compared to World Health Organization recommendations. METHODS A systematic search in PubMed, Web of Science, IBSS, Cochrane library and Google Scholar was conducted and 48 studies (12 cohorts and 36 cross-sectional) were included. RESULTS Regarding macronutrients, vegan diets are lower in protein intake compared with all other diet types. Veganism is also associated with low intake of vitamins B , Niacin (B ), B , D, iodine, zinc, calcium, potassium, selenium. Vitamin B intake among vegans is significantly lower (0.24-0.49 μg, recommendations are 2.4 μg) and calcium intake in the majority of vegans was below recommendations (750 mg/d). No significant differences in fat intake were observed. Vegan diets are not related to deficiencies in vitamins A, B , Β , C, E, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, copper and folate and have a low glycemic load. CONCLUSIONS Following a vegan diet may result in deficiencies in micronutrients (vitamin B , zinc, calcium and selenium) which should not be disregarded. However, low micro- and macronutrient intakes are not always associated with health impairments. Individuals who consume a vegan diet should be aware of the risk of potential dietary deficiencies.
Thyroid-Gut-Axis: How Does the Microbiota Influence Thyroid Function?
Plain language summary
Thyroid and gut disease often coexist together. This literature review highlights the strong interplay between gut, microbiota and thyroid disease. In autoimmune thyroid disease (AITD) gut bacteria imbalances, bacterial overgrowth, Coeliac's disease or non-coeliacs wheat sensitivity, increased gut permeability and resulting deficiency of thyroid nutrients are not uncommon. Inflammation and intestinal wall damage that lead to increased permeability are thought to be one of the driving factors for autoimmune activity. Allergens, certain drugs, impaired gut flora and nutrient deficiencies are some of the contributors to heightened intestinal permeability. Furthermore, the gut walls host deiodinase enzymes that convert thyroid hormone to its active form. The gut microbiota however influence thyroid function in their own rights. The bacteria are crucial for nutrient synthesis, absorption and availability, including those essential for thyroid health. Gut bacteria and their metabolites also play a significant role in the regulation, development and training of immune cells, relevant to AITD. After all, the gut also houses a large proportion of the immune system known as gut-associated lymphatic tissue (GALT). Besides, some bacteria species seem to be capable of balancing fluctuating thyroid hormone levels in the blood. The writings further elaborate on thyroid-essential nutrients and the gut such as iodine, iron, zinc, selenium and Vitamin D. And the impact of bariatric surgery on thyroid function and the presence of certain gut bacteria in thyroid cancers. In summary, the authors concluded that the thyroid-gut axis seems to exhibit a strong connection. Limited evidence from human studies showed promising results of probiotics and synbiotics on thyroid function and targeting the microbiota as a novel strategies for the management of thyroid disease is encouraged to be explored further. This article may be of interest to those looking for an informative summary on the many ways in which the gut influences thyroid function in health and disease.
A healthy gut microbiota not only has beneficial effects on the activity of the immune system, but also on thyroid function. Thyroid and intestinal diseases prevalently coexist-Hashimoto's thyroiditis (HT) and Graves' disease (GD) are the most common autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITD) and often co-occur with Celiac Disease (CD) and Non-celiac wheat sensitivity (NCWS). This can be explained by the damaged intestinal barrier and the following increase of intestinal permeability, allowing antigens to pass more easily and activate the immune system or cross-react with extraintestinal tissues, respectively. Dysbiosis has not only been found in AITDs, but has also been reported in thyroid carcinoma, in which an increased number of carcinogenic and inflammatory bacterial strains were observed. Additionally, the composition of the gut microbiota has an influence on the availability of essential micronutrients for the thyroid gland. Iodine, iron, and copper are crucial for thyroid hormone synthesis, selenium and zinc are needed for converting T4 to T3, and vitamin D assists in regulating the immune response. Those micronutrients are often found to be deficient in AITDs, resulting in malfunctioning of the thyroid. Bariatric surgery can lead to an inadequate absorption of these nutrients and further implicates changes in thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) and T3 levels. Supplementation of probiotics showed beneficial effects on thyroid hormones and thyroid function in general. A literature research was performed to examine the interplay between gut microbiota and thyroid disorders that should be considered when treating patients suffering from thyroid diseases. Multifactorial therapeutic and preventive management strategies could be established and more specifically adjusted to patients, depending on their gut bacteria composition. Future well-powered human studies are warranted to evaluate the impact of alterations in gut microbiota on thyroid function and diseases.
The impact of nutrition and lifestyle on male fertility.
Archivio italiano di urologia, andrologia : organo ufficiale [di] Societa italiana di ecografia urologica e nefrologica. 2020;92(2)
Plain language summary
The impact of environmental, lifestyle and nutritional factors on unexplained male fertility has long been acknowledged. Yet, little research had been dedicated to the topic, despite declining semen quality having become a worldwide phenomena. Available studies have yielded limited, and at times conflicting, evidence. Hence this literature review sought to capture the current knowledge around unexplained male infertility and environmental, lifestyle, diet and nutrients factors. Summarized is the evidence from 69 studies, including population observations and clinical trials. The collected outcomes showed that a Western-type diet, rich in red and processed meats, refined grains, high-energy drinks and sweets, trans and saturated fats was associated with poor semen quality. Whereby higher intakes of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, omega-3 and poultry showed beneficial effects. However, as only selected groups were examined, more research is needed to project such findings onto the wider population. The reviewed evidence also included alcohol consumption, which showed high alcohol intake closely correlated to declining sperm concentrations. Whilst the verdict on caffeine consumption and the impact on sperm quality was inconclusive. In addition, several interventional studies evaluated the effect of dietary supplementation on various parameters of semen, where coenzyme Q10, L-carnitine, vitamin E, antioxidants, combined nutrient formulations and herbal blends all had positive outcomes. The review on zinc and folic acid supplementation yielded mixed results. This brief recap of the current evidence on environmental, lifestyle and nutritional influences on male infertility summarises the dietary foundations for the support of unexplained male infertility.
BACKGROUND AND AIMS Male unexplained infertility has long been suspected to result from environmental, lifestyle and nutritional factors. However, the literature on the subject is still scarce, and clinical studies providing robust evidence are even scarcer. In addition, some similar studies come to different conclusions. Dietary pattern can influence spermatogenesis by its content of fatty acids and antioxidants. Yet, in an age of industrialized mass food production, human bodies become more exposed to the ingestion of xenobiotics, as well as chemicals used for production, preservation, transportation and taste enhancement of foods. We attempted in this paper to collect the available evidence to date on the effect of nutritional components on male fertility. MATERIAL AND METHODS A systematic search of the relevant literature published in PubMed, ScienceDirect and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials Database was conducted. Literature was evaluated according to the Newcastle-Ottawa- Scale. RESULTS Epidemiological observations are concordant in demonstrating an association of low-quality sperm parameters with higher intake of red meat, processed and organ meat and fullfat dairy. On the contrary, better semen parameters were observed in subjects consuming a healthy diet, rich in fruit, vegetables, whole grains and fish. Evidences of the negative impact on male fertility of by-products of water disinfection, accumulation in food chain of persistent organochlorine pollutants, pesticides, phthalates from food and water containers and hormones used in breeding cattle have been reported. Clinical trials of the effects of micronutrients on semen parameters and outcomes of assisted fertilization are encouraging, although optimal modality of treatment should be established. CONCLUSIONS Although quality of evidence should be ameliorated, it emerges that environmental factors can influence male fertility. Some nutrients may enhance fertility whereas others will worsen it. With diagnostic analysis on a molecular or even sub-molecular level, new interactions with micronutrients or molecular components of our daily ingested foods and leisure drugs may lead to a better understanding of so far suspected but as yet unexplained effects on male spermatogenesis and fertility.
Unusual Early Recovery of a Critical COVID-19 Patient After Administration of Intravenous Vitamin C.
The American journal of case reports. 2020;21:e925521
Plain language summary
Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) continues to spread globally and to date there are no proven treatments. Current treatment focuses on the management of the associated acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). There are many studies demonstrating that in severe sepsis and ARDS; Vitamin C reduces systemic inflammation, prevents lung damage, reduces the duration of mechanical ventilation (MV) and the length of intensive care unit (ICU) stay in patients. This is a case report where a critically ill patient received high-dose Vitamin C intravenous (IV) infusions and recovered. A 74 year-old woman with Covid-19, developed ARDS and septic shock. Usual medications were given. She needed MV and deteriorated rapidly. On Day 7 she was administered Vitamin C (11g per 24 hours as a continuous IV infusion). Her clinical condition improved slowly after this. In this case, high dose IV Vitamin C was associated with fewer days on mechanical intervention, a shorter ICU stay and earlier recovery. These results show the importance of further investigation of IV Vitamin C to assess its efficacy in critically ill Covid-19 patients requiring mechanical ventilation and ICU care.
BACKGROUND Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread, with confirmed cases now in more than 200 countries. Thus far there are no proven therapeutic options to treat COVID-19. We report a case of COVID-19 with acute respiratory distress syndrome who was treated with high-dose vitamin C infusion and was the first case to have early recovery from the disease at our institute. CASE REPORT A 74-year-old woman with no recent sick contacts or travel history presented with fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Her vital signs were normal except for oxygen saturation of 87% and bilateral rhonchi on lung auscultation. Chest radiography revealed air space opacity in the right upper lobe, suspicious for pneumonia. A nasopharyngeal swab for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 came back positive while the patient was in the airborne-isolation unit. Laboratory data showed lymphopenia and elevated lactate dehydrogenase, ferritin, and interleukin-6. The patient was initially started on oral hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin. On day 6, she developed ARDS and septic shock, for which mechanical ventilation and pressor support were started, along with infusion of high-dose intravenous vitamin C. The patient improved clinically and was able to be taken off mechanical ventilation within 5 days. CONCLUSIONS This report highlights the potential benefits of high-dose intravenous vitamin C in critically ill COVID-19 patients in terms of rapid recovery and shortened length of mechanical ventilation and ICU stay. Further studies will elaborate on the efficacy of intravenous vitamin C in critically ill COVID-19.
The Effect of a Multivitamin and Mineral Supplement on Immune Function in Healthy Older Adults: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Controlled Trial.
Plain language summary
Vitamins and minerals are essential for a healthy immune system. The prevalence of vitamin and mineral deficiencies increases with age, and this may contribute to age-related decline of the immune system. The aim of this study was to investigate whether a daily multivitamin and mineral (MVM) supplement could improve the immune function of older people. 42 healthy adults aged between 55 and 75 took part in this single-centre, two-armed, parallel, randomised, double-blinded study. Half of the group was given a MVM supplement called Redoxon Vita Immune (VI) containing the vitamins A, D, E, C, B6, B12 and folate plus iron, copper, zinc and selenium daily for 12 weeks, whilst the other half was given placebo tablets for 12 weeks. Participants were instructed to avoid certain foods high in vitamins and minerals such as oily fish, red meat, liver, and citrus fruits during the study period. Blood and saliva samples were taken from all participants at the beginning and end of the study period, to measure vitamin and mineral status and markers of immune function. Participants also kept a diary to record any illnesses or symptoms. At the end of the study, participants given the MVM supplement had increased their blood levels of vitamin C by 126% and zinc by 43%. There was no significant change in blood levels of vitamin D. There was no significant difference in the potential of blood to kill the introduced bacteria Staphylococcus aureus, or in neutrophil activity, nor were there any significant changes in blood levels of cytokines and chemokines. Participants taking the supplement did however report a shorter length, and lower severity of illnesses compared to those taking the placebo. The authors concluded that their findings support further research to test whether MVM supplementation can improve immune outcomes in older adults.
undefined: Older adults are at increased risk for vitamin and mineral deficiencies that contribute to age-related immune system decline. Several lines of evidence suggest that taking a multi-vitamin and mineral supplement (MVM) could improve immune function in individuals 55 and older. To test this hypothesis, we provided healthy older adults with either an MVM supplement formulated to improve immune function (Redoxon VI, Singapore) or an identical, inactive placebo control to take daily for 12 weeks. Prior to and after treatment, we measured (1) their blood mineral and vitamin status (i.e., vitamin C, zinc and vitamin D); (2) immune function (i.e., whole blood bacterial killing activity, neutrophil phagocytic activity, and reactive oxygen species production); (3) immune status (salivary IgA and plasma cytokine/chemokine levels); and (4) self-reported health status. MVM supplementation improved vitamin C and zinc status in blood and self-reported health-status without altering measures of immune function or status or vitamin D levels, suggesting that healthy older adults may benefit from MVM supplementation. Further development of functional assays and larger study populations should improve detection of specific changes in immune function after supplementation in healthy older adults. Clinical Trials Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov #NCT02876315.
Selenium, antioxidants, cardiovascular disease, and all-cause mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.
The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2020;112(6):1642-1652
Plain language summary
Oxidative damage is a shared characteristic in chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes, cancer and ageing. Antioxidants mitigate the impact of oxidants and have been widely investigated in ageing and disease. However, the evidence for supplementary antioxidants has been mixed and some authorities have advised against the use of certain single nutrients for the prevention of CVD or cancer. This systematic review and meta-analysis focused on selenium due to its vital role in the antioxidant system and associations of low selenium blood levels with increased risk of CVD, cancers and death. The study included 43 randomised controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating the effect of supplemental selenium and antioxidants with or without selenium and their impact on CVD risk, cancer and all-cause mortality. Overall supplemental selenium or antioxidants alone did not seem to be associated with CVD outcomes, cancer, CVD and cancer mortality, or all-cause mortality. On close examination, a decreased risk was seen for CVD mortality when antioxidants were combined with selenium, whilst antioxidant mixtures without selenium demonstrated an increased risk in all-cause mortality. The findings did not seem to be influenced by dietary selenium intake. The authors suggested that inclusion of selenium as part of an antioxidant mix could be key for an antioxidant associated risk reduction. However, in the absence of further long term studies, a balanced antioxidant-rich diet was advocated as the safest approach. In clinical practice, where antioxidant support beyond diet is warranted, supplemental antioxidant use should be concurrent with adequate selenium supplementation, with dose benefits of 50-200mcg observed.
BACKGROUND Antioxidants have been promoted for cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk reduction and for the prevention of cancer. Our preliminary analysis suggested that only when selenium was present were antioxidant mixtures associated with reduced all-cause mortality. OBJECTIVE We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to determine the effect of selenium supplementation alone and of antioxidant mixtures with or without selenium on the risk of CVD, cancer, and mortality. METHODS We identified studies using the Cochrane Library, Medline, and Embase for potential CVD outcomes, cancer, and all-cause mortality following selenium supplementation alone or after antioxidant supplement mixtures with and without selenium up to June 5, 2020. RCTs of ≥24 wk were included and data were analyzed using random-effects models and classified by the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation approach. RESULTS The meta-analysis identified 9423 studies, of which 43 were used in the final analysis. Overall, no association of selenium alone or antioxidants was seen with CVD and all-cause mortality. However, a decreased risk with antioxidant mixtures was seen for CVD mortality when selenium was part of the mix (RR: 0.77; 95% CI: 0.62, 0.97; P = 0.02), with no association when selenium was absent. Similarly, when selenium was part of the antioxidant mixture, a decreased risk was seen for all-cause mortality (RR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.82, 0.98; P = 0.02) as opposed to an increased risk when selenium was absent (RR: 1.09; 95% CI: 1.04, 1.13; P = 0.0002). CONCLUSION The addition of selenium should be considered for supplements containing antioxidant mixtures if they are to be associated with CVD and all-cause mortality risk reduction. This trial was registered at https://www.crd.york.ac.uk/PROSPERO/ as CRD42019138268.
Inflammaging and Oxidative Stress in Human Diseases: From Molecular Mechanisms to Novel Treatments.
International journal of molecular sciences. 2019;20(18)
Plain language summary
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are produced during normal metabolic processes or can be induced by environmental factors. High levels of ROS in the cell can lead to oxidation causing cellular damage and a subsequent increase in inflammation, which is a significant contributor to disease. Age-associated increases in such chronic, low-grade inflammation is also referred to as inflammaging. This review summarizes how inflammaging plays a role in various age-related health conditions. Described are the mechanisms of how ROS and the age-related decline in cellular turn-over and immune activation contribute to the pathology of cardiovascular disease, cancer, neurodegeneration concerning Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis. Furthermore, the authors discuss potential treatments that could assist in the management of such inflammaging-related diseases. These include vaccines to stimulate immune activity, stem cell intervention, drugs like metformin, nutritional and nutraceutical supplements like zinc, vitamin E, vitamins C, D, carotenoids, polyphenols and flavonoids like resveratrol, red algae extract and melatonin. Addressed are also general dietary concepts like calorie restriction, the benefits of the Mediterranean diet or a whole foods diet, and the potential of specific plant derived compounds like baicalin and sulforaphanes. The authors also briefly highlight the importance of the gut microbiome, as a poor gut microbiota has been associated with unfavourable age-related immune alterations and overall inflammaging. This review provides a comprehensive resource, detailing the effects and mechanisms of oxidative damage and its contribution to age-related diseases, including a list of interventions to consider when navigating the impact and risks associated with inflammaging.
It has been proposed that a chronic state of inflammation correlated with aging known as inflammaging, is implicated in multiple disease states commonly observed in the elderly population. Inflammaging is associated with over-abundance of reactive oxygen species in the cell, which can lead to oxidation and damage of cellular components, increased inflammation, and activation of cell death pathways. This review focuses on inflammaging and its contribution to various age-related diseases such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis. Recently published mechanistic details of the roles of reactive oxygen species in inflammaging and various diseases will also be discussed. Advancements in potential treatments to ameliorate inflammaging, oxidative stress, and consequently, reduce the morbidity of multiple disease states will be explored.
Vegan Nutrition for Mothers and Children: Practical Tools for Healthcare Providers.
Plain language summary
Vegan diets have grown in popularity and so healthcare practitioners need to be adequately educated to be able to give advice, as if they are properly planned, they can give adequate nutrition throughout all stages of life. This review study aimed to summarise the findings of the Scientific Society for Vegetarian Nutrition (SSNV) on vegan diets throughout pregnancy, breastfeeding, infancy, and childhood to provide recommendations for healthcare professionals. The paper starts by defining a well-planned vegan diet as high in a variety of whole or minimally processed plant foods, which meets the required amount of energy. In addition, minimising vegetable fats and avoiding trans fats to not displace other nutrient-dense foods is a requirement of a vegan diet with sufficient nutrition. Adequate amounts of calcium are also needed to be a complete vegan diet and vitamin B12, and vitamin D should be obtained from alternative sources, which are lacking in plant-based diets. The paper then goes on to recommend sources and requirements of protein, fibre, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, zinc, iodine, calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin B12 in vegans during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, and childhood. Many positives of a vegan diet were outlined such as increased fibre benefitting gut bacteria and high iron intakes. It was concluded that adequately planned vegan diets can provide sufficient nutrition at all stages of pregnancy and early life and instances of malnutrition in vegans is usually due to an inappropriate diet. Healthcare professionals could use this paper to understand what defines a complete vegan diet and sources of critical nutrients to ensure that vegan clients and patients are receiving adequate nutrient amounts.
As the number of subjects choosing vegan diets increases, healthcare providers must be prepared to give the best advice to vegan patients during all stages of life. A completely plant-based diet is suitable during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, and childhood, provided that it is well-planned. Balanced vegan diets meet energy requirements on a wide variety of plant foods and pay attention to some nutrients that may be critical, such as protein, fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, zinc, iodine, calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin B12. This paper contains recommendations made by a panel of experts from the Scientific Society for Vegetarian Nutrition (SSNV) after examining the available literature concerning vegan diets during pregnancy, breastfeeding, infancy, and childhood. All healthcare professionals should follow an approach based on the available evidence in regard to the issue of vegan diets, as failing to do so may compromise the nutritional status of vegan patients in these delicate periods of life.