There is a lot of negativity surrounding the Vegan culture these days.
Much of it comes from activists who look to enforce an agenda pursuing the wrong approach.
The facts are laid out in the open: Vegan cuisine can be a wonderful treat with the number of spices, herbs and a wide range of rich flavors that are found in nature.
The best way to make an acquaintance interested in a Vegan diet plan is to treat them to some well-prepared dishes.
Vegan diets have many backgrounds around the world. Countries like India have a good culture of building their diets pursuing a vegan option due to their religion.
Most westerns nations embrace vegan diets as a way to be healthy and out of respect for the life of animals.
There are also quite a few ways to be introduced to veganism.
The better-known options are going entirely green in a cold-turkey commitment and vegan meal plans or by consuming certain lacteous products along the green diet.
The vegan option is also a way to face obesity and the health issues that come with it.
All over the world there are more processed foods available than ever, and while most of them are regarded as quick fixes for homemade meals, almost all of them can pose a threat to our health in the form of long-gestating chronic diseases like heart diseases, diabetes I or II, and many ailments related to our blood pressure.
Losing weight on a vegan diet is a way to keep our good health.
The following guide is written with the purpose of showing you how many benefits you can find on a vegan diet plan as well as a sample of a basic vegan weight loss plan you can try on your terms to dip your toe into vegan life.
Let’s talk about Nutrition
A vegan diet emphasizes high consumption of foods born out of the soil like vegetables, all types of beans, fruits, and zero intakes of meat or any derivatives such as milk and eggs.
Processed products are out of the equation as well, but since this is probably being read by many meat-eaters out there, let’s take one step at a time and go over this process slowly.
Since we are pursuing improvement in our health the first step should be to embrace whole foods, let’s take it from there and ask some questions:
Why whole foods?
Whole ingredients or whole foods are the same products you usually consume, but they are generally presented in their raw, unrefined form. This means healthier products without chemical preservatives or pesticides.
You can recognize them by their composition and the list of ingredients. Also, their coloring usually reflects earth tones such as brown sugar or whole bread.
I’m not particularly fond of vegetables, why should I eat them?
For starters, almost every vegan diet for weight loss that has been documented by science has been associated with many health benefits on the human body.
Let’s cast aside for a minute the low risk of heart disease, the reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease, stopping the development of diabetes or cancer.
There are also many improvements that will come to the overall functionality of your body by consuming certain vegetables even if you are meat-eater.
Aside from Whole Foods and Vegetables what else should I include?
A vegan meal plan usually pursues the replacement of the nutrients you get out of meat and dairy from alternative sources such as grains, beans, lentils, healthy fats, and fruits.
Since meat-eaters have it difficult even with a lot of determination most of them need to pursue a vegetarian diet where they still consume limited amounts of meat, some poultry, fish, eggs and a few derivatives of milk such as cheese.
I hear that Most Vegans Diet Plans lack Flavor, is That True?
Not at all! Thanks to globalization and the free market there are many options to put some flavor into our vegan diet plan.
Some of them come from very natural sources than most of us haven’t even tried before for having our mindset set on western flavors.
Aside from classics such as salt and pepper, we can cook our meals using coconut oil or any other oil that derivate from plants unrefined.
There are also many spices such as ginger, turmeric, coriander, fenugreek and cumin that adds rich flavors to your dishes and enhances them with a lot of nutritional benefits.
All right I have a general Idea now. What Should I Start to Eat and When?
Any meal on the day is good to begin your vegan weight loss diet, try incorporating some of the following ingredients in your daily meal plans by combining them or replacing meat-based dishes with one of these alternatives
- Vegetables: Go for tomatoes, eggplant, spinach, mushrooms, onions, mustard, okra, all variations of lettuce, cauliflower, cabbage and anything that gets your attention in the supermarket.
- Legumes: All type of beans is fair game here. Go for white beans, kidney beans, black-eyed peas, lentils, chickpeas, and pulses.
- Nuts and Seeds: You probably already known peanuts, but you can also try cashews, pistachios, almonds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, and more.
- Whole Grains: Avoid anything white, it’s usually refined. Try brown rice, whole-grain bread, millet, natural corn, quinoa, basmati rice, buckwheat, amaranth, barley, and sorghum.
- Fruits: If you eat a piece of fruit inside some sort of comfort zone it’s time to try out something new. Try to including guava, mangoes, papayas, plums, pears, pomegranate, tamarind, and lychee. Of course, you can keep eating your oranges, apples, melons, and bananas.
- Healthy Fats: If you are used to the flavor of meals cooked in refined oils, be ready to try out some new ones as you prepare your meals using full-fat dairy, peanut oil, avocado, coconut oil, coconut milk, olive oil, mustard oil, and sesame oil.
- Herbs and Spices: You need to stop these flavorings that include a mixture of herbs to season your meals and start to use natural garlic, cardamom, basil, cumin, coriander, paprika, turmeric, black pepper, ginger, fenugreek, and whatever gets your attention.
- Roots and Tubers: Most of them have the clear-go for any vegan diet: all variations of potatoes, carrots, turnips, yucca, ocumo, and yams
- Dairy: As stated previously, for meat-eaters that need to take it slowly: limited amounts of cheese, milk, and yogurt. There is a lot of ice cream options out there done without dairy. You can try one of those. You might be surprised at how good they are.
The amount of vegetables and whole-grain products will boost the presence of fibers in your body, and your digestion will be significantly improved in a few days.
If you are wondering where the big nutrients are coming from, don’t worry: your proteins and carb are coming from all the legumes, nuts and seeds you consume.
All right I know what to Eat. What Should I Drink Then?
While vegan diets don’t exactly forbid any liquids unless they are from animal origin, facts are that most of the exceeding calories that enter your body come from high-sugared soft drinks and processed.
That’s why even on a regular diet is best to avoid soda cans and replace them from any of the options on the list:
- Regular Water.
- Sparkling Water.
- Unsweetened Tea such as green tea, chamomile or Jamaica.
- Natural made fruit juices with no processed sugars.
Now I have a pretty clear idea of What to eat. What Foods Should I Avoid Then?
Almost everything processed in nature is bad for your health and overall for your weight loss plan.
Most of these products are loaded with refined sugar and have a high-calorie intake per serving that can mess up any weight loss efforts.
What are the basics of this? These are not so hard to spot on your own actually: candy bars are out, fried foods are a no-no, soda should disappear from your diet plan, even light versions of popular brands.
We have stated above the dangers of these foods and the fact that many people replace a full meal with them. If you genuinely want optimal health, you should gradually minimize the products on this list until you don’t miss them anymore:
- Processed beverages: Any brand of soda, sweetened tea, sports drinks or fruit juices. A single sip of any of them has more sugar than humans in good health can process on a single day.
- High-Sugary foods: Most of the treats offered to kids that we also indulge as adults such as cookies, ice cream, candy bars, pastries, cakes, sweetened yogurt, and high-sugared cereals
- Sweeteners: white sugar, refined honey, or condensed milk
- High-Fat foods: Any meal served in a fast-food chain is out of the equation as well as, french fries, Lunchables, or fried foods
- Transfats Products: Processed margarine, chips, or anything that leaves a stain of fat in the container or package.
- Refined oils: Sadly, options like canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, and grape seed oil are only found refined, making them undesirable options to cook your meals.
- Processed Dressings: Your salad dressings need to be without sugar, ketchup is out of the picture, as well as BBQ sauce, or any other dressing that includes mayonnaise.
- Refined Grains: You know the drill by know: white bread, white pasta, white rice, and biscuits are out too.
The joy that most of these products give comes from the number of stimulants they release in our bodies.
While we can indulge in some of them from time to time, the best way to go is to replace them with natural options until we don’t miss them anymore.
Going Vegan for the First Time on Your Own? Try this One-Week Meal Plan
Nutrition experts have supervised the suggestions we are about to offer.
However, we must do the right thing and recommend you to visit a doctor before undertaking the challenge of trying out veganism on your terms.
After your physician gives you his approval, you can try this vegan weight loss meal plan 1200 calories that were designed to provide satisfaction to meat-eaters as they pave their way to transition.
One of the biggest joys you can get out of being Vegan is to value the effort put in each meal. You should prepare most of this in your spare time.
The recipes for each dish can be found on one of the many tutorials posted on YouTube about vegan cooking. Now let’s take a look at this vegan diet for weight loss.
Vegan transition, Day 1:
- Breakfast: Try a Scrambled Mexican Tofu Skillet served with organic blue corn tortilla chips and green sauce. Wash it down with black tea and a lime wedge.
- Lunch: Try a Stuffed Hummus Pita Sandwich with side berries or mango slices. Drink some green tea with fresh mint.
- Dinner: prepare an open-face California Vegan Burger made with thick-sliced cauliflower “steaks” roasted in olive oil.
- Dessert: a single glass containing one-third of a cup Peanut Butter Whole Grain Clusters with one-third of a cup of plant-based yogurt or mashed banana.
Vegan transition, Day 2:
- Breakfast: Half a cup of rolled oats made with chia seeds, mixed berries, walnuts, and vanilla coconut milk.
- Lunch: Curry tofu salad with a vegan alternative to mayonnaise, your beans of choice, some celery, red onions, served on a coconut wrap.
- Dinner: Grilled tempeh covered with vegan barbecue sauce, served with a side of quinoa, raw red peppers, and steamed broccoli.
- Dessert: A serving of vanilla coconut yogurt with a topping of vegan chocolate chips, walnuts, and cinnamon.
Vegan transition, Day 3:
- Breakfast: Look for a recipe to prepare a vegan English muffin with a side of avocado slices dressed with salt and pepper. Wash it down with a cup of coffee and coconut milk creamer
- Lunch: A serving of quinoa with dairy-free spaghetti sauce, and some Italian seasoning. You can add black beans with a portion of dairy-free breadsticks and a green salad of your choice.
- Dinner: A veggie burger served on a dairy-free bun with a side of carrots or a salad with dairy-free croutons or some balsamic vinaigrette.
- Dessert: plain old gluten-free vegan store-bought cookies, or nut-based ice cream.
Vegan transition Day 4:
- Breakfast: Two slices of sweet potato toasted on a grill, and topped with mashed avocado, serve it sprinkled with chia seeds and paprika.
- Lunch: A green salad made with spinach, chopped bell peppers, dry roasted chickpeas, and sliced cherry tomatoes. Add some butternut squash noodles. Use oil and vinegar as dressing.
- Dinner: Fix one serving of steamed sweet potatoes, with black beans, and quinoa chili topped with sliced avocados.
- Dessert: A serving of cashews or a cup of berries.
Vegan Transition, Day 5
- Breakfast: A cup of coffee with soy milk, two slices of toast with almond butter, and sliced fruit of your choice.
- Lunch: A mixed green salad full of lettuces, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, beans, crispy chickpeas, some avocado, and some oil and vinegar for dressing.
- Dinner: A grain bowl containing brown rice, some carrots, bean sprouts, some red cabbage, scallions, and peanuts. Preferably dressed using peanut butter soy vinaigrette.
- Dessert: Oil popped popcorn (no salt) or mixed nuts with dried fruits
As you can see our first week is based on a 5-day trial so you can try all these vegan meal plans rich on new flavors and have some perspective.
By days six and seven you can try to go back to your old ways, or you can take the time to appreciate what has been improved in your body and go for a second round before going to a nutritionist to get a broader perspective and a dirt plan structured to your organism.