I've been a vegetarian (lacto-ovo) for a while now (back on it after 10 years of being a carnivore) and I feel like I'm relying too much on dairy and eggs for protein which is affecting my health. I think I'm ready to move on to a more vegan way of life. I'm also trying to lose a little weight (about 9 pounds) to get in gear for the summer.
I've been dieting (low fat, low calorie, low carb, you name it
) for most of my life and frankly, I'm tired of it. I've been doing nothing but be on the diet/binge cycle for 20 years and I know that's not going to get me anywhere in the long run, healthwise or weightwise. So ideally, I'd like to eat a healthy vegan diet without necessarily restricting anything to the point where I feel deprived. There are some things I don't have a problem with - for example, I'm not a big grain eater and restricting myself to, say, 2-3 servings a day (such as 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal and 1/2 cup cooked couscous) wouldn't bother me. I'm not a big believer in super low-fat, though, so I wouldn't do well restricting fats too much, though I could live on a few tablespoons of olive oil for cooking throughout the day and maybe an ounce or two of nuts only. I'd much rather focus on veggies, fruits (again, not a big fan of them, so I wouldn't overdo), legume (which I love) and protein sources (mainly tofu, since I can't seem to get anything like TVP or seitan in West Texas and I'd rather stay away from the packaged soy products like veggie burgers and veggie sausages).
Anyway, I'm wondering if I do move to a vegan diet and focus on the good stuff while eating what I feel comfortable with of grains and fats, would I be able to lose the 9 pounds anyway without being on a "diet"? I've read on this board that people have said when they switched from being vegetarian to vegan they did manage to lose weight without necessarily setting out to do that.
I should mention that I do exercise pretty regularly - about 45 minutes of moderate (pilates/resistance bands workout) exercise 6 days a week.
If anyone has had experience switching to a vegan lifestyle and managed to lose weight too I'd love to hear about it.