You are here

Transitioning from Low carb to Vegetarian--HELP!

Hi Everyone--I am brand new here and really have made the decision to transition to be a vegetarian.  I need to take some baby steps and really need some pointers and basics.  My husband and I have been on a low carb program and I have been wanting to be a vegetarian for a long time but need help starting.  I want to make this life change for many reasons. Can you help?

annie
:)

Hi Annie!  What are the specifics of your low carb program?  I do somewhat of a "low carb" diet--no refined carbs, and I don't often eat bread (whole wheat or otherwise) or grains (whole or otherwise), starchy vegetables, or sugar, but instead I eat lots and lots of leafy greens, raw vegetables, cooked non-starchy vegetables, fruit, and beans.  It isn't really low carb, it's just healthier carbs with high nutrient to calorie ratios.  (It's called Eat to Live, in case you are familiar with that).

What is your program like?  Was it heavy in meat and dairy?  Do you eat fruits, vegetables, and grains?  You can easily replace your protein with beans, tofu, tempeh, grains, and nuts, for starters, but I don't know which of these are in keeping with your program.

0 likes

Hi Kate--- Thanks for responding. I was on a low carb/low fat plan. Mostly veggies , fish, chicken and turkey. I am not a meat lover and really need to make a healthy transition. I have heard of that book and went to the library a few hours ago and someone has it checked out. So i put it on hold. 

I love fruit and miss it so. I also have always loved veggies and brown rice.  I purchased Boca burgers that someone recommended today and some oatmeal--my fav. 

I also keep away from the "white" stuff and all sugary things.  I think the transition will be easy for me since I already broke some bad eating habits when I eliminated sugars but I'm the type of person that needs something to follow. I do not want to gain any weight-I'd like to lose weight while being healthy.

If you have any more ideas let me know. I really appreciate any advice.

annie

0 likes

Oh ok, so you are not as interested in keeping up the low-carb part so strictly now that you are transitioning to vegetarian?  Like, you will eat grains and such, right?

In that case, I would definitely recommend using lots of whole grains, like brown rice and whole oats.  Many grains are very high in protein, like quinoa.  You could start trying different recipes using beans and tofu--vegweb has a ton!

If you are interested in maintaining your weight, I wouldn't veer too heavily toward dairy for protein.  Lots of people do this when they go vegetarian.  Not only will it cause weight gain, it is less nutritious for you than seeking nutrients from nondairy protein sources. 

0 likes

Thank you again-- Can you tell me what you eat for breakfast?  I think I can handle the lunch and dinner thing but what do you eat for breakfast? 

About the dairy--I'm allergic to milk so that helps me. 

I'm going to Barnes and Noble tonight to buy the Eat to Live book. I went on his web site.  I think it'll help!

Thanks so much!  I know I can do this and I am so excited.

annie

0 likes

Well, I really like lots of fruit for breakfast, but I know that that's really light for some people.  You can do oatmeal with dried fruit/nuts/nut butters/maple syrup, tofu scramble, toast with peanut butter/other nut butter/hummus, whole grain waffles or muffins, smoothies, or granola with soy milk.  That's all I got off the top of my head.  :)

0 likes

Also, Eat to Live is great for weight loss, but also has really valuable nutrition information and guidance for good eating throughout your entire life.  It's a great book to have.  ;)b

0 likes

Hi Kate--- You seem like an amazing person! Thank you so much for helping me!  I can't wait to pick up the book tonight. I am so excited that I made this decision.  It feels so great when you know you've made a decision to be good to yourself.  Thanks again!

Annie

0 likes

i was also going to suggest Eat to Live, it's a fantastic book! but KMK beat me to it!!

here are the breakfasts we do at my house

--smoothies (i have a vitamix so sometimes i'll put a carrot or other veggies in!). usually these are homemade soy or rice milk, frozen fruit, maybe some veggies. I don't add any sugar or sweetners to them. they are really filling and will hold me to lunch. putting in an apple or berries (lots of fiber!) helps
--whole food juice. with the vitamix, again, if i have a lot of fresh fruit around i'll peel it and blend it into a juice. i guess this is like the smoothie but nothing is frozen. i add water to help things get moving.
--cereal. we usually buy whole grain natural healthy cereals (kashi, organic random brands) and eat these with either soy yogurt (homemade or store bought) or soy/rice milk. i also do hot cereal sometimes if i'm not too lazy

ETL will suggest eating like 2-3 pieces of fruit for breakfast, which is fun also. a big fruit salad is yummy!

0 likes

Hi Kate--- You seem like an amazing person! Thank you so much for helping me!  I can't wait to pick up the book tonight. I am so excited that I made this decision.  It feels so great when you know you've made a decision to be good to yourself.  Thanks again!

Annie

Aw, thanks!  I'm glad you found it helpful!  Going vegetarian will be awesome in so many ways. 

0 likes

Hi! I think you're the first person I get to welcome to vegetarianism! I consider myself pretty new (I'll be having my one-year "veggieversary" this August!) but being new I think I can help you with the baby steps.

Breakfast: Oatmeal! It's delicious, heart-healthy, fast, and FILLING! I like mine with a little bit of maple syrup and a spoonful of peanut butter. Have a piece of fruit and wash it down with a glass of plain soymilk (I find the vanilla soymilk is too sweet, I like the nutty flavor of plain).

Lunch: I usually have either a peanut butter and banana sandwich (can you tell I love peanut butter?) on whole-wheat bread with SunChips... or a big salad with spinach, tomato, carrots, sweet corn, red bell pepper, sunflower seeds and just a tiny bit of spicy salad dressing. Oh, and a BIG glass of water.

Dinner always varies... but we have our favorites. Veggie pizza, brown rice with steamed veggies and seasonings, soups loaded with frozen vegetables (I'm lazy sometimes), veggie burgers of many varieties (spicy black bean is one of my favorites, and can easily be converted into tacos)... umm... lots of stuff.

I hope this helps a little! I know at first I wasn't sure what to eat because every meal previously had revolved around meat. There are lots of vegetarian options/substitutes, and not all of them take a long time to make or anything. This site (both recipes and people) are a great resource!

Oh, and I forgot to mention: being vegetarian has this funny way of making you feel really good about yourself and what you eat. I love it.

:)>>>

0 likes


Oh, and I forgot to mention: being vegetarian has this funny way of making you feel really good about yourself and what you eat. I love it.

:)>>>

Oh, I love that! So true...

0 likes

I think I eat pretty low-carb and vegan. And I adore my diet.

Like Kate, I don't eat much in the way of grains or breads, but when i do, it's obviously whole grain all the way. I tend to stick to unprocessed veggies, beans, nuts, and tofu. When I do eat grains, I try to go for higher-protein grains, like quinoa and amaranth. When I eat "bread" products, I like smaller whole wheat tortillas, because they're smaller than a slice of bread, which means less "bread" for your buck.

I actually don't eat much in the way of fruit either, but when I do, I usually go for berries, which are lower in sugar and on the lower end of the glycemic scale. (Plus full of antioxidants.)

For breakfast, I've been eating a lot of vegan omelets lately. MMMMm! Or I still like dinner foods for breakfast-- especially a cup of bean soup or some sauteed veggies in a tortilla. But I'm not a big fan of sweets in the morning, so I'm pretty atypical, I think.

0 likes


Oh, and I forgot to mention: being vegetarian has this funny way of making you feel really good about yourself and what you eat. I love it.

:)>>>

Oh, I love that! So true...

I agree. Somehow, it makes you more conscious of what you do to yourself and to the environnement. Being conscious rocks!
(Wow, I need to develop my argumentation. Nah, too late. Need sleep.)

0 likes

I think I eat pretty low-carb and vegan. And I adore my diet.

Like Kate, I don't eat much in the way of grains or breads, but when i do, it's obviously whole grain all the way. I tend to stick to unprocessed veggies, beans, nuts, and tofu. When I do eat grains, I try to go for higher-protein grains, like quinoa and amaranth. When I eat "bread" products, I like smaller whole wheat tortillas, because they're smaller than a slice of bread, which means less "bread" for your buck.

I actually don't eat much in the way of fruit either, but when I do, I usually go for berries, which are lower in sugar and on the lower end of the glycemic scale. (Plus full of antioxidants.)

For breakfast, I've been eating a lot of vegan omelets lately. MMMMm! Or I still like dinner foods for breakfast-- especially a cup of bean soup or some sauteed veggies in a tortilla. But I'm not a big fan of sweets in the morning, so I'm pretty atypical, I think.

Oh wow, we're pretty similar, sharway!  Also, those omelets look great.

0 likes

Thanks everyone!  Well I went and bought the book and read 95% of it tonight.  I think I might try the 6 week plan. Has anyone tried that?  I also read some of the "China Experiment" or something like that and it was really interesting.

Anyway-- Have a great night and thanks again!

annie

0 likes

I also read some of the "China Experiment" or something like that and it was really interesting.

The China Study? I just bought it the other day to have as a resource. I haven't started reading it yet, though.  :)

0 likes

Thanks everyone!  Well I went and bought the book and read 95% of it tonight.  I think I might try the 6 week plan. Has anyone tried that?  I also read some of the "China Experiment" or something like that and it was really interesting.

Anyway-- Have a great night and thanks again!

annie

I am doing the 6-week plan right now.  I like it a lot.  Lots of greens, but I like them. 

The China Study is a great book as well!  There's so much important information in both of those books.

0 likes

Good Morning!  Yes the "CHina Study".  Thanks I got all mixed up. 

Kate--- I need to use some kind of salad dressing at first--do you have any recommendations?  Anyone else? I am going to try the 6 week plan but I need to re-read that section and plan ahead a little.  What does your daily menu look like on this plan?

annie

0 likes

for salad dressing, i would add in more "treats" to the salad (cute up fruit). i know ETL has some DIY dressings.

oil and vinegar dressings are good. i think oil is limited in the 6 week plan (not sure?) but i eat most of my salads with just balsumic vinegar. they also make a lot of fancy flavored ones now (berries, mango, everything!). adding herbs you like are also good for getting flavor.

0 likes

I also use vinegar a lot.  A really nice balsamic is great.  I also have a low calorie dressing that I bought.  Sometimes I use salsa as a dressing,  But I don't sweat the dressing too much.  I just make sure to use no more than I need (less than a tablespoon).

For meals, I pretty much follow the basic skeleton he gives--fruit for breakfast, salad w/beans and fruit for lunch, salad and some cooked vegetables for dinner and maybe some kind of tofu (all without oil).  I get many recipes from fatfreevegan.com.  They have a section specifically for ETL recipes (look at the side toolbar).  There are lots of easy things to make there.

0 likes

Pages

Log in or register to post comments