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Old 09-08-2007, 08:18 PM   #1
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Question vegan protien sources

Hello,
sorry if this is a redundant question.
I'm trying to start the 40-30-30 type diet. (% carbs-protien-fat)

at the advise of the accupuncturist i'm seeing. She says i need more protien.
And after reading the book she loaned me -- Fat burning nutrition, by the Daoust couple-- I've basically concluded that I need to alter my eating habits by decreasing my carb intake and boosting my protien intake. For the theory of the diet to work, 30% protien should be eaten at each meal.

but I'm also interested and quite sold on traditional asian diets, that only eat meat once per week , or as a condiment. I'm not to keen on eating meat everyday or at every meal. Not being a big meat eater in the first place, I've added some free-range, grass-fed, sustainably farmed beef and chicken to my diet in recent weeks, but I'd much prefer to try and get protien from non-animal sources.

I'm okay with eggs, i get them either free-range - organic- over-priced at the store, or from friends of mine who live in the country and have access to hobby farmers, which i prefer.

I get the occassional dairy product, like cottage cheese, but I know that in asia, they traditionally did not rely on dairy, and they are some of the healthiest, longest lived people on the planet, so i'm not wanting to rely on dairy myself too much.

So i'm here trying to learn about some non-animal protien sources.
I love beans, but aside from lentils and chick peas, most give me bloating and gas, which i hate, so i only eat small amounts.
Any tips on reducing gas are welcome!!!

One concern i had was about the fake meat products. I've notice most are not organic and wondered if that should tell me something.
Also, whey protein. What is it? does anyone know how it's produced?

I'm all for soy, and noticed soybeans have as much protien as some meat products (~26 grams i think), but i was checking out the fake meats today and noticed alot of strange sounding ingredients other than soy.
are the fake meats the same as the 'texurized vegitable protien' that i 've heard about.

well, thats enough run-on sentances for one day, thanks for reading.
any insight is most welcome,
thanks,
kb.
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Old 09-08-2007, 08:29 PM   #2
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You said you like soy- what about something like edamame? Soymilk? Just regular old tofu? How do you feel about fish (lots of fish in Asia!)?

Keep it well rounded, no need to OD on lentils or tofu. As long as you are eating balanced, nutritionally-rich foods and a varied diet, you should hit your protein needs.
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Old 09-08-2007, 08:30 PM   #3
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You can get pure soy protein (not isolated soy protein, but whole soy), hemp, rice and pea protein powders that are vegan. Whey is a byproduct of the dairy industry and not vegan. You are right to be wary of the highly processed "veggie meats".

It's a challenge to do a 40-30-30 diet healthfully as a vegan.

I am just curious...If you aren't vegan, why are you looking for vegan protein sources? If you eat as much animal products as you've mentioned, you are certainly getting more than the 50 grams minimum that most nutritionists and health organizations set as the "basic" minimum.

Chicken eggs, chickens, cows and cow milk products you eat would supply ample protein without added carbohydrates (all except the cow milk products are carbohydrate-free).

Best of luck!
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Old 09-08-2007, 10:32 PM   #4
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Hi girls thanks for your replys.

I know it might sound like from what i wrote that i am a regular carnivore, but the truth is, until about the past month, i haven't bought beef or chickn in at least 4 years. My accupunturist told me that i have in tcm terms "weak blood", and i've known for a while I am borderline anemic. She told me that i really should eat beef or lamb to boost my blood production. I was horrified and stubborn and dug my heals into the ground, but with as many health problems as i've had, i thought i should give it a try. So I bought some grass fed beef from the health food store.

I figure i'm okay eating meat once in a while. And i'm trying to eat a little more here in the begining to give myself a boost, but i'm hoping to become less reliant on animal products as time goes on for various personal reasons. Mainly I think factory farming is an unacceptable way to raise animals, driven by greed and misplaced sence of entitlement. Spiritually, i believe that eating unhappy animals is bad for you. I hope that doesn't sound too wacky.

for the most part, i'm okay with eggs because i think that people can raise chickens kindly and have a more or less symbiotic relationship with them. Providing food and a place to live in exchange for eggs. Plus in japanese culture, they eat a good amount of eggs, and the traditional japanese diet is very healthy.

I don't really like to eat dairy, because I dont personally know anyone with a cow, so i can confirm that it is being cared for humanely, but if i do buy dairy for protiens sake I look for something organic. I know its not a sure sign that the cows are living a decent cow-like life, in fact i'm more certain than not that they probably don't,but it's the only thing i have to go off of. Plus as I stated, traditional asian cultures don't have alot to do with dairy, and they live long healthy lives. So i just don't see dairy as essential to good health.

But I would like to wean myself away from animal protien and see if i can boost my protien intake with plant protein sources. It's just something i never paid much attention to. I've always maintained that eating a vegitable laden diet was the healthiest way to go, but that book i mentioned gave a good explaination why it may be better to balance out carbs with protien and fat. So i'm giving it a try.

I have noticed a decrease in my post-work food cravings and general physical weakness/ low blood sugar feeling since i've been trying to do it. But i'd like to see if i can achieve it by adding more plant protien rather than animal protien.

But basically that's the reason for the protien. I just feel so weak all the time. Light headed and tired and unfocused. and i know i tend to binge on sugary foods, and when i'm trying to eat healthy, i opt for potatoes, rice , herbs fruit and vegies, which is all carbohydrate. So maybe i'm over carbed and didn't know it. My accupunturist says some people need more protien than others. And another holistic nutritionist told me that i should eat less sugar and more protien. so that's my latest venture.

I'll let you know if i impove.

thanks for the protien tips,
I like edamame. I'll check out the health food store for the soy, rice, hemp and pea powders.

I guess now that i think of it, when i was told I needed to eat more protien, I thought i would have to ditch my vegetarian efforts, So i'm trying to see if perhaps i don't really have to become such a carnivore and still increase my protien. I just need some variety and flexibility.
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Old 09-08-2007, 11:41 PM   #5
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Kaebea, you sound well educated on these topics!

In TCM, the Spleen is the organ responsible for transforming the food that we eat into energy (Chi) and blood, so it is likely that she has diagnosed you as "Spleen deficient".

When the Spleen’s own energy is deficient, multiple organ systems are compromised, resulting in insomnia, anemia, heart palpitations, anxiety and digestive disorders.

I work with my acupuncturist to build up my blood/Spleen too! For example, beets and chickpeas are good for balancing Spleen/Pancreas, so I eat them often. There are MANY ways to build up Spleen Chi. Ask your acupuncturist to help you find non-animal ways to do this and if she's good, she'll have many suggestions!
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Old 09-09-2007, 04:48 PM   #6
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thanks soulbliss,
"insomnia, anemia, heart palpitations, anxiety and digestive disorders."
yes, that sort of pretty much describes me, except for the insomnia--it's hard to tell because i have a bad habit of staying up to late...but i do have bizzarre dreams, which i was told is also a sign of weak blood, not getting into deep enough sleep.

thanks for the bit about the chickpeas and beets, those are 2 of my favortites. I bought "The Tao of Healthy Eating" and it lists alot of qualities of different foods, but I don't think it has chickpeas in there.

I''ve noticed to that when i eat curries, i feel better, so i'm trying to do more of that.

It's hard though, like i just stopped off at taco bell on my way home from work, cause i felt exhausted, and not like cooking.
I just hope i can get to level that i am eating well more often than not so i can see if my research is sound.

wish me luck and i'll keep trying.

thanks,
kb.
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Old 09-11-2007, 01:23 AM   #7
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I have a hard time getting enough protein in too...just don't like it. I'll cook chicken then pick at it because it grosses me out... I just wanted to offer up a meat-eater suggestion for protein you can feel better about - buffalo. Most of the buffalo I can get is all grass-fed, organic, free range etc... it is also considerably leaner and much better tasting then regular beef.

I am trying to slowly get away from meat for the most part & this is something that has helped- we never ever buy ground beef.

I enjoy a lot of the TVP products, especially the morningstar breakfast sausages and the "chicken" patties, they make a good quick lunch w/ some veggies.
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Old 09-13-2007, 06:09 PM   #8
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thanks lizziness,
yes we have a buffalo farmer nearby, and i've seen it in the store.
you know, chicken sorta grosses me out too. more so than beef.

but i have to admit, i do notice feeling fuller, and less of a feeling like i'm either a) hypoglycemic or B) having the urge to binge eat.

I've been doing a lot of reading up lately and it seems that a lower carb and proportionate amount of protien affects alot of body functions , hormone production for example.
I added a scrambled egg and a bit of 'scrambled tofu' to my breakfast this morning and i felt pretty good today, only having a lunch of hazelnuts, since i forgot to pack anything else.
Unfortunatley , binge eating has become a habit/pattern for me ,and after my invigorating walk at our local garden - park , i thought it would be a good idea to lunch at China buffet. ** however, let it be known that i decided ahead of time no desserts, and i did keep to that.

I will get it down one day I hope. There is sort of this unseen force that keeps telling me that if I don't keep eating the same types of foods i've been eating, than who else is going to eat it? Like i'm going to throw off the balance of the universe by changing my habits or something.

thanks guys, i will keep trying. change is in the air, i can feel it.
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Old 09-13-2007, 08:27 PM   #9
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Hi! If you "google" John McDougall, he has some very interesting research about our protein needs which are far lower than any of us think. I recommend any of his books if you are interested in eating completely vegan and feeling great. Also, Doug Furman's "Eat to Live" is an excellent book on going from a SAD diet to a vegan.

I think that the book that helped convince me the most that a vegan diet was completely adequate and even necessary for good health is The China Study. What an eye opener it is. I don't believe you could pay me to eat any dairy after reading The China Study.

Anyway, hopefully this might help you. You can get the protein articles on Dr. McDougall's web site for free.

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Old 09-15-2007, 02:17 AM   #10
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thanks sam,
I will have to look into that china study. i'm most interested in asian eating habits. you always hear about them being so healthy, physical and mentally sharp.

I know they eat alot of tofu and soy. and in japan alot of fish.
I'm seeing an accupunturist and her evaluation of me is that i have weak blood and perhaps need more protien than some people. i think it's possible that since we all have differing health status and history, that we have slightly varying nutritional needs to balance us out. I also have been having female hair loss and hoping some added protien will benefit that. I have also read that too much simple carbs/white sugar can release to much insulin which could lead to hair loss.

So, i'm trying to stick with this for a time and see if i notice improvment in my health. I don't want to appear protien obsessed. i think it's more that I never paid too much attention to protien, and being that i have an aversion to meat, may in the past didn't get enough.

It's hard, i'm trying to find what feels like a good balance to me.

thanks for everyones support and interest.

bye,
Kathy.
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Old 09-15-2007, 07:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaebea View Post
thanks sam,
I will have to look into that china study. i'm most interested in asian eating habits. you always hear about them being so healthy, physical and mentally sharp.

I have also read that too much simple carbs/white sugar can release to much insulin which could lead to hair loss.
When I was in Japan, I noticed that their food was based around white rice with vegetables. Then, they added a very little amount of fish or chicken. I remember thinking how small their servings were as well. Now, I understand after doing quite a bit of research.

I had not heard about the simple carbs/sugar/hair loss connection. That makes sense though. I have had significant hair loss in the past and attributed it to thyroid. Maybe it was my high junk SAD diet? A month ago, I stopped eating any bread or sugar. That may explain why I feel so well. That plus eating so many fresh vegetables.

I agree that we all have different dietary needs! I wish you well in finding that balance, I know it's hard.

blessings,
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Old 09-15-2007, 03:44 PM   #12
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Dear Mamasam
that's cool, you went to japan!

can you describe how they eat? like appoximately how big of servings? Do they have 3 squares a day? when or how often might they have between meal snack?
I read 'japanese women don't get old or fat' and that gave me alot of background. it sounded like they prepare a variety of dishes and each one has it's own little plate, instead of one big one like we do in the states.

I'm so used to dinner being one big normal sized 12inch plate piled high with food. and then some seconds. and still more snacking later on. That's just normal to me. but maybe to other people its not.

I tend to want to eat like there is no tommorrow most of the time.

thanks,
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Old 09-15-2007, 04:40 PM   #13
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From what I saw, they eat out of very small bowls which they pile high with rice, then they add small bits of things, maybe dried fish, some veggies etc.. They eat very small servings, maybe one or two pieces of sushi, one small (not those huge hunks you get here) chicken stick etc. I'm not sure how often they eat, but it seems to me that they eat four or five bowls of rice per day. I may be wrong, but many of my very skinny friends from the Philippines eat a huge amount of rice. The difference is that they eat a very small amount of meat and not a lot of junk. Of course, I'm talking about natives. Once they come here and starting eating SAD, then they usually gain weight and add the health problems we American's are so famous for. I recently bought a small bowl from the Asian market for my serving size. It is helping me quite a bit. Of course, my salad I use a large mixing bowl in order to get enough greens to be healthy. LOL

I enjoyed Japan immensely, but was quite glad to be back in my own country when I returned. I've never seen a place so clean and neat in my life as Japan. And the people so polite and helpful. I was young then and most of the people would come up to me and take my picture and elderly men would rub my arm. I was told that since I was blonde, they thought it was good luck.

I know what you mean about the big plate..that's why I'm so overweight! I always clean my plate, but it never occurred to me to get a smaller plate until recently. It helps to fool your brain into thinking you had more than you really did.
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Old 09-16-2007, 05:19 AM   #14
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Kaebea, I'm so glad you read 'Japanese women don't get old or fat.' It was a very informative book. Do you have any Asian markets in your area, like Mitsuwa? We have one near (relative) our house, and the employees are REALLY helpful in explaining how things are supposed to be used.

You said earlier that you are borderline anemic. Do you need to up your protein, iron or both? If anemia if your issue, I can offer this. After I had my first daughter, I hemorrhaged terribly, leading to wretched anemia. I ate red meat two to three times a week for about a month to boost my iron. That, along with a daily iron supplement, fixed my anemia within the month. I have never been a red meat eater, as it sounds like you aren't, but after speaking to many doctors that was the best option for my particular situation. I continue to take an iron supplement daily (OTC rather than Rx), and haven't had a severe anemia relapse since (and haven't had to touch red meat since).
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Old 09-16-2007, 11:48 PM   #15
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Have you tried Tempeh? That's yummy stuff.
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