There is no rule of thumb suggesting that vegans and vegetarians cannot lose weight or build muscle the same way meat eaters do. It may take you a bit longer, but a strict regiment and consistency will get you there.
Adopting a vegetarian diet is a very healthy option. Red meat, while a rich source of protein and testosterone, contributes significantly to high saturated fat and cholesterol levels. A tailored vegetarian diet goes a long way in increasing your energy and improving your fitness levels.
Most vegetarians, however, do not follow the proper nutritional diet required for their weight-loss program and over-consume low quality carbs and starches; this causes the blood sugar levels to rise drastically and the body produces a lot of insulin as a natural response. The result is stored body fat, lots of stored body fat.
Also, it is time to discard the ‘fats’ myth. The human body needs healthy fats to supplement energy. These fats are rich in enzymes which help break the stored body fat, and are also rich in omega 3 and omega 6 which are good for the immune system.
What To Eat And What Not To Eat
- Foods like potatoes, rice and bread should be consumed in moderate amounts, especially in one serving. Otherwise you will gain fat very quickly.
- Fruits and Vegetables with low glycemic value such as broccoli, tomatoes, squash, spinach, and berries. Cut out the appetite for junk food; load up on the greens and berries.
- In addition to berries, tropical fruits and bananas have a high calorie count and serve the body well.
- Have a lot of avocados. Have them solid, have them in liquid form. Just have them. Also, eat a lot nuts and seeds. Almonds, walnuts and pistachios would be a good idea for the former, whereas sunflower seeds would be a good source of the omega 3 and omega 6.
- For high protein value, there are foods like tofu, lentils and chickpeas.
In addition to the diet of raw salads and nuts (adopting a raw vegetarian diet is great for weight loss), it is very important to keep yourself hydrated at all times. Drink a lot of water, at least eight to ten glasses a day. Another smart tip would be to exercise on a relatively empty stomach and wait for an hour after exercise to consume any food. Also, it is a smart idea to have six to seven meals a day, with the quantity kept under check.
Linda is a certified dietician and life coach. After 5 years of gaining experience with the NHS community, Linda now works on a freelance basis providing nutrition and dietary advice to clients across the UK. She strives to promote positive, practical messages about food and health to treat nutrition related health problems.
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