No, don’t worry. I have not gone vegan. I took a look at another FASTER study participant (Damian Stoy) over on the Low Carb Studies Athletics BLOG (FASTER Subject 43). Damian is a vegetarian (or maybe vegan I can’t tell the difference). One of the results that Damian posted was his blood tests. They are generally pretty good but there’s one number that stood out.
Damian’s platelet count is below the reference range. What causes this? Turns out there is a study of this (Obeid R1, Geisel J, Schorr H, Hübner U, Herrmann W. The impact of vegetarianism on some haematological parameters. Eur J Haematol. 2002 Nov-Dec;69(5-6):275-9.).
CONCLUSION: vitamin B12 and iron status were compromised by a vegetarian diet. Variations in mean corpuscular volume were determined by iron and vitamin B12 status. Lower lymphocyte and platelet count were accompanied by metabolic evidence that indicated vitamin B12 deficiency.
Another study (Fisher M, Levine PH, Weiner B, Ockene IS, Johnson B, Johnson MH, Natale AM, Vaudreuil CH, Hoogasian J. The effect of vegetarian diets on plasma lipid and platelet levels. Arch Intern Med. 1986 Jun;146(6):1193-7.).
…platelets, which may also play a role, have also been observed to have aberrant functions in vegetarians.
This post has some suggestions for vegans to raise their platelet levels (Golden Vegetarian Eatery).
Or just eat some meat. Folic Acid.