How can I become a vegetarian but lose weight?
I would like to become a vegetarian but im under weight and Im scare to lose weight. What can i do or eat so I could be healthy and not lose weight while been a vegetarian?
Well, I wish I had thought of this when I became a Vegetarian. I recently began to eat meat in mid August after almost 3 years without. I did not know anything about nutrition and what I should and shouldn’t be eating as a ‘healthy’ vegetarian. I was never educated on the subject and was the only vegetarian I knew, people will spend more time (parents and friends included) giving you a difficult time about your decision rather than educate you on the subject.
Do not be fooled by the ‘vegetarian entrees’ at the supermarket, they are not meant to live off of, as I have learned the hard way. It would be best if you talk to your doctor or look at books that explain to you the diet you need to maintain to stay healthy. Depending on your ‘type’ of vegetarianism, you may need more of some nutrients than others. I was a Pescatarian, a vegetarian that ate fish, in the hopes to get a better source of protein. Its best to be gradual with this kind of change because it can and most likely will make you feel weak or ill for a time.
Now, this is VERY important to understand, so read carefully. I did not eat properly for about 3 years and not until 2 1/2 years into it did someone explain the damage I had done to myself. From not getting the proper nutrients I had problems like: weight loss (kind of, its different for every person, but not normal if you are eating properly), hair became weak/thin (came out in the shower, which is kind of scary), nails became brittle/weak (also would be blue/purple sometimes), I sustained several injuries (I was a serious athlete and have still not completely healed) and the worst is that my teeth began to kind of rot (not like in cartoons, I had to have work done). This is what happened to me gradually and both my doctor and dentist (both didn’t know I was a vegetarian) thought I had an eating disorder. So you should be very careful. Not trying to be scary but I wouldn’t want this to happen to you.
Lastly, if, after an extended period of time, you decide that you cannot maintain this restricting diet or some other reason, it is very difficult to eat meat again! You’d think, “Sure, pick up a cheeseburger, chow down and you’re good.” Wrong! I can say that, first hand, I am introducing meat back into my diet and whenever I eat it (you will also give up other foods you won’t even realize!) and other foods, I get stomach aches and cramps and feel very ill.
This decision should be made after you have been properly informed of all aspects of vegetarianism, especially nutrition!
You are in a great position to indulge in lovely, healthy food. A quick, relatively cheap and easy way to add healthy calories is to go for nuts and seeds. Loaded with healthy fats and vitamins, no preparation required. Vegetarians have loads of protein sources. It’s vegans that need to be more organised. Cottage cheese to give you the slow release protein, milk, pulses, lentils, quorn and soya products, and if you don’t mind upping your calories, yogurt (generally has more sugar than milk or cottage cheese), nuts and seeds. Vegetarians can easily gain weight. The problem is there are quite a few vegetarians that aren’t organised enough with their food and fall into bad habits. Quite often through desire for convenience products, vegetarians eat lots of bread and cheese, thus can have high carbohydrate and saturated fat, low nutrient diets.
Get your vits and minerals from a spectrum of different coloured fruits and veg.
Protein from the sources mentioned above.
Healthy fats from nuts, seeds, avocados, oils, flax seed oil.
If ever you are losing weight simply add more healthy carbohydrates, with so many sources I’m not going to mention.
Mega healthy and people will still see you if you stand side on.