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Old 10-10-2007, 03:47 PM   #1
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Hello veggie friends

I would like move to a vegetarian weight-loss diet (lots of different reasons - health, respect for animals, fear of animal-borne food disease, etc). In the past I have had success with Mediterranean diets and Atkins, but little success with low-fat, calorie-counting diets, such as Weight Watchers. This makes me somewhat timid to make the change to vegetarianism, as I worry that I may not be able to lose weight - or, God forbid that I might gain! So, I suppose my questions are: Are those of you losing weight on vegetarian diets counting calories, fat portions, etc? Is there anyone out there who has tried to apply the Mediterranean diet principles to an all veggie-diet with success?
Does anyone know of a plan or book that combines vegetarianism with either Med principles or high protein?

A few other points I might make... I enjoy eating a healthy, nutritous and natural diet. I try to avoid frozen, pre-made, packaged and boxed foods, as I feel they give me less satifaction and I have not had weight loss success with eating things in my diet. Also, I need a strict plan. I do well with guidelines and meal plans. And oh yes, I do exercise regularly - tennis and power walking are my current outdoor enjoyments.

Thank you for any and all suggestions.
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Old 10-10-2007, 03:57 PM   #2
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I am just starting the "Eat to Live" plan which doesn't involve calorie counting at all and seems to be successful for those that follow it. Basically, you eat lots of raw veggies, lots of cooked veggies, legumes and fruit and you can eat "other" stuff too but minimally. I am only a few days into it but I am enjoying it.

It may be something you'd be interested in doing? I wasn't sure if I wanted to do it but I wanted to read about it so I checked it out from the library. After reading a few pages into it, I decided I would follow it for at least a while.

Here is a description of the book - http://www.vegparadise.com/vegreading55.html
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Old 10-10-2007, 04:37 PM   #3
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If it's something that really means alot to you... I'd say give it a try. I haven't had any problems losing weight while being vegan. When I was vegetarian, I found that one of my big problems was that there are plenty of processed foods that are vegetarian (even if it is on accident!). So it was easy for me to eat something like, say, doritos because I knew that they were vegetarian. Being vegan keeps me on track, PLUS I can't eat any of the unhealthy foods because... they're not vegan!

Anyways, back to your original question, it's all about calories in vs. calories out, sweety. If you eat less calories than you consume, whether on a low carb diet or a vegetarian diet, you WILL lose weight.
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Old 10-10-2007, 04:59 PM   #4
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Being vegan keeps me on track, PLUS I can't eat any of the unhealthy foods because... they're not vegan!
Yep, that's what I tell myself when I down half a bag of Tings. Vegan, and so healthy (seriously, those things are dangerously good)

Just kidding! I do find the more I stick to a vegan diet the better I feel and the better the weight loss goes, but there are lots of vegan foods that you can over-indulge in just like anything else.

wish4fit - Sorry I don't have much specific advice for you, I am not good at strict meal plans so I don't do them. I just try to stick to a balanced mostly whole-foods and mostly vegan diet. I also try to only eat when I'm hungry and watch my portions. Good luck!

nelie - I have heard great things about ETL, glad you're enjoying it so far and look forward to hearing more as you go along.
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Old 10-10-2007, 05:25 PM   #5
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Shan - the diet is great, getting rid of the caffeine is what is killing me... Normally I just go along with keeping caffeine as part of my life but I figured that I can give caffeine up for at least a few weeks. The headaches are killer.

I am really feeling full though from all the veggies. I thought I ate a lot of veggies before but it is amazing how many veggies you can eat when you cut out a lot of the other stuff.
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Old 10-10-2007, 06:11 PM   #6
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I am starting a lacto ovo vegetarian diet tomorrow.

In the past the only thing that ever worked for me was limiting calories, but this time I am doing it wisely - no starvation - I'm following the eucalorics method featured in the book Calorie Queens. I am eating my maintenance calories NOW. It's a different approach, and one I like.

I feel you definitely can be a vegetarian and lose weight. I've tried many different approaches over the years, but if I didn't cut my calories (and there are many varied ways of doing that), I just didn't lose. Period.

I am so glad to be giving up meat. I'm not ready to take the vegan dive, but just being a vegetarian makes me feel better both mentally and physically. You can do it! It's finding the right plan that's a perfect fit that's the hard part.
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Old 10-12-2007, 12:30 PM   #7
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Thanks ladies for all the tips

Nelie - I looked into the Eat To Live program. I have a question though - can you tell me what 1 pound of raw veg looks like? It seems like sooo much food! Then again, I've never really measured the weight of my vegetables, so maybe it's not that much....Just curious. The no caffeine thing doesn't appeal to me, but I've gone without it before, so it is possible - just a total nightmare. I'm still looking at options, but this is a diet I would consider, so thanks!

Marigolds - Thanks for the tip on Calorie Queens. I will do some research and see what I think. Good luck to you!
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Old 10-12-2007, 03:16 PM   #8
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wish4fit - Even though I have a scale, I don't measure my food. He says it is a goal to eat 1 lb of raw veggies and 1 lb of cooked veggies. I can tell you already that I don't meet the 1 lb of cooked veggies requirement but I do think that I have been eating at least 1 lb of raw veggies. It isn't a requirement but rather a goal which helps you feel fuller. The book also gives pretty good reasons for giving up caffeine so I figured why not try it? In previous plans where they said to give up caffeine, I didn't follow that advice because honestly they never had any good reasons for doing so.
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Old 10-18-2007, 10:04 AM   #9
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I had a hard time losing weight as a vegetarian, but it was because I was eating way too much dairy. Once I went vegan, I dropped 30 pounds effortlessly. Focus on eating veggies, fruits and whole grains, and don't make the mistake of replacing meat with dairy and eggs all the time.
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Old 10-18-2007, 05:19 PM   #10
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I had a hard time losing weight as a vegetarian, but it was because I was eating way too much dairy. Once I went vegan, I dropped 30 pounds effortlessly. Focus on eating veggies, fruits and whole grains, and don't make the mistake of replacing meat with dairy and eggs all the time.


I was a "cheesetarian" throughout high school and college, did nothing positive for my health. Going to a mostly vegan (probably 90 - 95%) diet helped immensely when I got serious about eating better and losing weight. It's been slow but I'm down about 40 lbs total.
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Old 11-10-2007, 09:05 AM   #11
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When I first went vegetarian in August, I did lose a little bit of weight. That was mostly due to the fact that I went vegetarian overnight. My body was used to eating meat everyday, at every meal. So, I did lose weight a little. But, now i'm maintaining my weight because of a lack of exercise due to an ankle injury at the beginning of October. I've also cut milk entirely from my diet, except for the occasional milk chocolate, and i've cut down my intake of cheese by 50%.

But like all the others said, it's all about portion control and exercise. If you eat too much and don't exercise you will gain weight even if it's a vegetarian diet.
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Old 11-10-2007, 03:04 PM   #12
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Vegetarian diets work well for weight loss for me as long as I don't go crazy on nuts, avocado, cheese and so on. I have started Eat to Live, too. It's very filling - very healthy. If you go to his website, there is an audio on interview Mehmet Oz (always on Oprah, wrote You on a Diet and You the Owner's Manual). It's really interesting.
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Old 11-11-2007, 10:37 AM   #13
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Nelie - why does he say to eat mushrooms everyday. I do, because I like them, but I was just wondering why he said that. Im so getting this book because its so like the Fat Smash diet but appears laid out better.
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Old 11-11-2007, 11:05 AM   #14
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ok.. so, I have to reply to this because the FIRST time I read this I was thinking " How could you NOT lose weight on a veg diet" .. In my mind I just assumed that a vegetarian diet was a clean diet. But after reading the foods list and other posts I can see how just because things are not made from animal products doesnt make them healthy or "clean" for that matter. I eat as clean as I can, with being border-line vegetarian ( I eat seafood) So.. my answer would be that you could most DEFINITELY lose weight with a clean/vegetarian diet
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Old 11-12-2007, 07:10 AM   #15
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Ready - I don't remember seeing eat mushrooms every day but he does like mushrooms just because they are meaty (as meaty as a vegetable can get that is), filling and low calorie.
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