Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Big Changes Are Coming
First of all, eating a vegan diet will nourishes our bodies best. Most people will notice big changes within their bodies after they become vegan. Some vegans choose to adopt a whole foods plant-based diet. Plant-based diets consist of a balance of fruits, vegetables, grains, modest amounts of good fats. In addition, it excludes processed foods and sugars. Simply going vegan means excluding all animal products from your diet. Yet, not all vegans are whole foods plant-based.
No matter what type of vegan diet you adopt, it will have numerous health, environmental, and animal welfare benefits. Typically, your cholesterol levels will go down, blood pressure will normalize, and weight should decrease. The reason for all of these changes is the addition of more fiber and nutrients into your diet. That along with the elimination or reduction of processed foods. This includes reducing trans and saturated fats only found in animal products and processed foods containing animal products.
Again, a standard vegan diet does not necessarily exclude processed foods that are high in sodium. Thus, not every single vegan is in shape, and not every vegan wants to be in shape. We are all on our own journey. However, anyone seeking to lose weight on a vegan diet will only need to make some simple changes in order to see big changes in their body.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Monitoring Daily Intake
Especially relevant, one of the first and most crucial changes to facilitating vegan weight loss is to monitor your daily calorie and macronutrient/micronutrient intake. The easiest way to do this is by downloading a free app like MyFitnessPal. Calorie and macro tracking apps are very helpful for both accountability and assuring that you are fueling your body with proper and sufficient fuel. Seeing what you are putting into your body allows you to make small but conscious adjustments. Tracking your macros will allow you to see how much fat, sugar, sodium, and other nutrients you are fueling your body with.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Making Adjustments
Once you begin tracking what you eat, you will need to make adjustments to begin restricting and eliminating things from your diet. Moreover, adding certain things into your diet to hit your vitamin and mineral daily goals. Restricting fat, sugar, and sodium levels are very important, as is making sure that only good carbohydrates are consumed. Another “must” of macronutrient tracking is assuring that you are still meeting your Required Daily Allowance (RDA) for all vitamins and minerals.
These goals can be achieved by varying the fruits and vegetables consumed, or “eating the rainbow.” And by swapping out “bad carbs” like white bread, white flour, white rice, packaged baked goods or anything containing sugar (white sugar, brown sugar, cane sugar, cane syrup). Furthermore, swapping out processed foods for “good carbs” like brown rice, whole wheat flour, oats, fruits, vegetables, white and sweet potatoes and home baked treats sweetened with dates, date sugar, or coconut palm sugar.
A good rule of thumb is to eat a serving of fruit, vegetables, grains, and a small portion of good fat at each meal. Grains and fats, along with the fiber in fruits and vegetables, will fill you up and allow you to power through the day without cravings. There is no such thing as overdoing it when it comes to fruits and vegetables. Hence, it is wise to snack on those between meals to assure that hunger never becomes an issue.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Good Fats
As discussed in our previous article on good fats, in order to be completely healthy, approximately 20% of our daily calories should come from good fats. Good fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats like avocados, seeds and nuts, spirulina, greens, berries, and more. These foods help us reach our daily RDA of omegas and keep our bodies running efficiently.
Trans fats and saturated fats should be avoided at all costs. However, it can be helpful for a person who is currently at an unhealthy weight or body fat composition to temporarily adjust the intake of good fat. Adjustment rates should be right around 10-15% of total daily calories. This can speed up fat loss, but should only be done temporarily.
It is strongly advised to supplement with an Omega-3 and Omega-6 complex. 2-5 weeks of monitoring and reducing your daily intake of good fats coupled with a good High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) program will jump start your fat loss.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Good Sugars
Just as there are good fats and bad fats, the same rule applies to sugar. Fructose is not the bad guy. The sugar in fruits, vegetables, grains, and potatoes does not have the same effect on your body as the fructose in processed sugars like brown sugar, white sugar, cane sugar, high fructose corn syrup, etc.
Because it is proven that fruit will absolutely not make you fat, go ahead and satisfy it with a bowl of berries, an apple, a banana, etc. Go ahead and sweeten your baked goods with dates or date sugar, coconut palm sugar, or fresh pressed fruit juice. Stay away from processed foods and sugars, and weight loss will occur.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Good Carbs
Finally, the same good and bad rule applies to carbohydrates. Sugars are carbohydrates, and if it is a good sugar, it is a good carbohydrate (fruit, vegetables, grains). If it is a bad sugar, it is a bad carbohydrate (packaged baked goods, white sugar, high fructose corn syrup, white bread, white flour). Additionally, foods like sweet potatoes and white potatoes are good for you. You absolutely do not have to limit yourself.
It is counterproductive nutritionally to restrict yourself to a low carb diet. Because your body needs good carbohydrates for fuel, feed your body what it needs. Whole grains, brown rice, potatoes, fruits, and vegetables are all necessary for proper body function, proper nutrition, and weight loss.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: It’s Not Complicated
In conclusion, a vegan diet for weight loss is not complicated. So, start a food log using a calorie tracking app to help with accountability and daily nutritional goals. Finally, by eliminating bad carbs, sugars, fats, and processed foods, and only consuming healthy fruits, vegetables, and grains, fat loss is inevitable.
To all my beautiful vegans, what changes are you going to make? We want to hear from you! Comment below and let us know what’s on your mind 🙂