Hello! I'm Afraid to go vegan - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 08-06-2015, 11:39 AM
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Post Hello! I'm Afraid to go vegan

Hello inspiring veggie friends! My name is Jakeya and I currently identify as an omnivore (I eat fish and eggs). I have been doing lots of research and the more I read or watch the more I want to completely eliminate animal product from my life. The problem is, I don't know where to start!

I was Ovo lacto for about 4 so the idea of giving up fish is not foreign to me. I only eat it once or twice a week as is so I wouldn't miss it. What I'm afraid of is not getting enough protein. I know that protein is found in plant sources, however it seems a good majority of protein comes from tofu or beans and I don't like either of those things (also not a fan of protein shakes). SO many recipes I've found use beans or tofu and it scares me to even think about. Help?
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#2 Old 08-06-2015, 12:15 PM
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Do you like rice? Quinoa is like rice, it's a grain. Unlike many other grains it's full of protein. I believe it's the grain that's highest in protein.

Now, there is protein in many, many things. Not strictly beans and tofu. You also don't need as much protein as you might think. Nuts are good sources of protein.

What about beans don't you like? If you really want to go vegan and eliminate animal products, you might have to be willing to try new foods.

Edit: Also, welcome to the board! I'm new here, too!

Last edited by mattjorgs; 08-06-2015 at 12:18 PM.
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#3 Old 08-06-2015, 12:39 PM
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Hello, Jakeya16:

Welcome to VeggieBoards!

I will let the many more experienced veg*ns give their advice as to sources of protein other than tofu and beans.

I would like to ask you why you don't like tofu and beans? While I could easily give up tofu, I personally would have a hard time being vegan without beans. I find most of them to be pretty bland and so are great with dishes like meatless chili which have flavorful spice mixtures. They basically "hide" in the background and deliver their protein and other nutritional benefits almost unnoticed. I know that conventional wisdom holds that beans cause flatulence, but that really hasn't been an issue with me as long as I eat slowly and chew my food very well.

As mattjorgs pointed out, you may need less protein than you think. Many non-vegetarians think they need way more protein than they actually do. I urge you to research this very carefully for your age and activity level. Here's a nifty online nutrient requirements calculator: http://fnic.nal.usda.gov/fnic/interactiveDRI/ .

Last edited by BobJustBob; 08-06-2015 at 12:59 PM.
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#4 Old 08-06-2015, 01:19 PM
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Don't be worried about protein, eat healthy and eat some protein rich foods (beans/greens etc) if you like but it's not a big a deal as everyone makes out.

Tim Shieff is the UK freerunning champion and strong as an ox, he doesn't focus on protein at all.

Also make sure you're eating enough through the day to match your exercise levels, that's the key.
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#5 Old 08-06-2015, 01:21 PM
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Talking

Thank you both for your answers!
When it comes to beans, they have very little flavor and a very starchy almost chalky texture to them. If push came to shove, I could make myself eat the beans. I just feel like it'd be a much more enjoyable experience if I didn't have to force food down my throat. I'm willing to try new things, and would happily take any suggestions! Quinoa is something I've had before, and while I'm not a fan of it alone I enjoy it mixed into salads or soups and baking.
I've never found anything about tofu that I like, appearance, texture, flavor, all a turn off for me! The most I can handle is a small piece blended into a fruit smoothie, I just worry that it's not enough.
I love almonds and peanuts and the butters that come from both!
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#6 Old 08-06-2015, 01:36 PM
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Here is a list of 27 Vegetables Highest in Protein.
This list contains easy vegetables to eat such as peas, sweet corn, and sugar snap peas. A lot of vegetables have protein, so you really don't have to worry too much if you don't like beans or tofu.
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#7 Old 08-06-2015, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by jakeya16 View Post
What I'm afraid of is not getting enough protein.
Protein deficiency is a common myth about vegetarianism.

I've always been vegetarian, and that is always the first thing people ask. That and calcium ('but the milk!'). It's really not an issue for the vast majority of people.

If you go vegan though, make sure you're at least semi-regularly eating foods with vitamin B12 else you'll start getting numb toes and those nasty sores on the inside of your cheeks.

Last edited by Dogma; 08-06-2015 at 02:31 PM.
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#8 Old 08-06-2015, 01:52 PM
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i don't eat tofu, either,

but i do eat beans every day. i cook them from dried. they are great with onion, garlic, italian parsley, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt, and pepper.

i really enjoy my hummus and my bean soups. i also put them in my spaghetti sauce.

truth is though that i'd rather eat crushed newspapers than a fish or a chicken or a cow or a pig.
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#9 Old 08-06-2015, 02:34 PM
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You could try adding some seasonings to the beans to help the flavour. Or cook them with sauteed onion if you like it. I find that sautéed onion adds a lot of flavour to food.
As for tofu, maybe you'll like smoked tofu. I personally like it better, and I know someone who doesn't like regular tofu, but did like smoked tofu.

"We have enslaved the rest of the animal creation, and have treated our distant cousins in fur and feathers so badly that beyond doubt, if they were able to formulate a religion, they would depict the Devil in human form." - William Ralphe Inge

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#10 Old 08-06-2015, 03:09 PM
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How do you feel about nut butters? Or soy milk?
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#11 Old 08-06-2015, 03:57 PM
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What kinds of beans have you tried, and who was cooking them? There are so many kinds of legumes that you might like.
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#12 Old 08-06-2015, 05:24 PM
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What kinds of beans have you tried, and who was cooking them? There are so many kinds of legumes that you might like.
I agree! There are a ton of different kinds of beans and so many ways to eat them. I love to make pureed split pea soup or pureed white bean and carrot curry soup. Another favorite is red potatoes mashed with navy beans and the usual mashed potato fixins. I have even baked with beans. Chickpeas are great as an energy bar with oats, peanut butter, and sweet potato. Black beans can be used in cakes and brownies. I once made a gluten free vegan gingerbread for my Mom for Christmas and the binder was....red lentils! My whole family loved that cake and no one guessed there were beans in there at all. I didn't tell them til later.

And one of my favorites is chickpea salad sandwiches in place of egg salad. Oh, and baked beans on toast or polenta. And hummus, oh my! It is basically pureed chickpeas and tahini and a few other ingredients. Don't forget chili...
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#13 Old 08-06-2015, 07:08 PM
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I would try mixing beans in things, like in hummus. Hummus is made of beans but it's blended into a spread. I don't know if you've tried canned beans, but I don't notice starchiness with them. Try using canned beans an mash them into bean burgers if you're willing to try. I understand tofu. It's like a mix of eggs and baby food for me, but it's bearable. I typically eat it for calcium every now and then, but if you're going vegetarian, you don't have to worry about that. Are you willing to eat things like tempeh or seitan?

As for protein, everything has complete protein in it except gelatin. A large banana has 2 grams of protein. Depending on your weight and height, you may need more protein than I do, but it's very easy. 1 cup of oats has 26 grams of protein and 6 oz of pasta without sauce has 10 grams of protein. One 8 oz patty of tempeh has 42 grams of protein in it. If you combine that all together, that's 80 grams total and below 2000 calories.
A person who is sedentary has to weigh more than 200 pounds to need 80 grams of protein.
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#14 Old 08-06-2015, 08:23 PM
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Hi Jakeya,

Mercy For Animals has published a nicely-written vegan guide (free): http://www.mercyforanimals.org/vsg.pdf . The nutrition part of the guide starts on page 7.

You might like these easy ways to eat more beans:

Mash tofu, and add it to spaghetti sauce. Serve with your favorite pasta.

Mash tofu, and add it to oatmeal.

Add canned beans (rinse them first) to your favorite soup.




_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#15 Old 08-07-2015, 04:24 AM
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If you don't like the flavor of beans by themselves, try them in soups, burritos, casseroles, etc. Just google "vegan bean recipes" and you will get some idea of what's out there (For example: http://ohsheglows.com/categories/rec...beans-legumes/). I love beans, but I don't eat them plain. Veggie meats and veggie burgers are also a good source of protein, if you like those. Peanut butter is also a good source of protein.

Here are some meal/snack ideas that have plenty of protein:
Burrito with refried beans or seasoned black beans
Tacos with veggie meat (I like Boca or Gardein), with your favorite taco fixings
Bean chili with cornbread (Hormel has a vegetarian canned chili that is vegan and has beans and fake meat crumbles in it)
Lentil soup with rice (if you are looking for a convenient option, progresso lentil soup is vegan - just check the label since there is a nonvegan one with sausage)
Chickpeas with mediterranean vegetables, dressed with olive oil, lemon juice and garlic
Falafel in a pita
Hummus with cracker or carrots
Tofu scramble with potatoes and greens (awesome for a weekend breakfast)
Chicken parmesan with veggie chicken (Gardein chicken scallopini or Boca chik patties work well)

Here are some general nutrition recommendations from a vegan registered dietitian, Ginny Messina: http://www.theveganrd.com/food-guide-for-vegans and if you're looking for more reading on protein, try this from vegan registered dietitian Jack Norris: http://veganhealth.org/articles/protein
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#16 Old 08-07-2015, 08:10 AM
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Wow! Thanks so much for all of the information everyone! I'm so excited to start looking for recipes and make the shopping adventure! Thank you all for your help, I'm sure you'll be seeing a lot more questions from me as I embark on this journey
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#17 Old 08-07-2015, 02:24 PM
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I'm 100% with Naturebound on the bean suggestions. i'll add the wide variety of vegetarian baked beans available. Many labeled 'steakhouse' are vegan, i'm kind hooked on aldi brand atm. another way is to infuse flavors into them, esp. when still hot. The juice from jarred jalepanos is one of my favorites, or oil/vinegar dressing and herbs. White beans mashed with garlic, a bit of olive oil, and herbs or spices makes another hummus type dip. And don't forget fat free refried beans-those are vegan in all my experiences.

I LOVE tofu! I marinade and panko crust it and sautee with seasoning. Or make puddings or pie with silken... I have never, and will never mash it with spaghetti sauce or have with oatmeal--and i like oatmeal too, but the two combined ..... no

anyway, you can see how different everyones suggestions are. It's fun to discover how differently you can prepare and combine foods that you never thought to do before! Don't just think about what you don't want, but what you might like if you only did something different.
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#18 Old 08-07-2015, 07:31 PM
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I can honestly say I'm taking baby steps! Tonight I had a chopped salad with things I don't normally like : tomatoes, red onion, black olives and jalapeno peppers. It was the best darn salad I've ever had. I hadn't had onions since I was a kid and decided I didn't like them, so that was really new to me. They have a really strong flavor, but that flavor is good!

Tomorrow I plan on trying a baked potato with salsa, black beans, cilantro, corn, jalapeno, and guac. I'm hoping it's as tasty as this salad!
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#19 Old 08-09-2015, 04:11 AM
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1st, I suggest you to stop stop eating Fish first. Then the eggs and Diary.

Well......1st try Googling "Vegan body builders".

Check this out.



They go to take all that protein from somewhere !!!


Make sure you eat sources with Complete sources.

nutritiondata.self.com will come handy when looking if something has complete protein or not.
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#20 Old 08-09-2015, 04:16 AM
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I did some research and made clear that it is possible to get needed protein from a Vegan diet. Probably a little harder on a Vegan diet.

There are several protein sources if you Google.

Some of them I have found are

rice+Lentils.
rice+beans.
Cowpea.
chickpea.

oats.
Quiona.
Buckwheat.

Try limiting your soya usage. You may not need to complete avoid them.

http://greatist.com/health/complete-vegetarian-proteins

http://www.buzzfeed.com/deenashanker...at#.mel1rodkGa

Good lcuk!
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#21 Old 08-09-2015, 04:47 AM
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Originally Posted by jakeya16 View Post
I can honestly say I'm taking baby steps! Tonight I had a chopped salad with things I don't normally like : tomatoes, red onion, black olives and jalapeno peppers. It was the best darn salad I've ever had. I hadn't had onions since I was a kid and decided I didn't like them, so that was really new to me. They have a really strong flavor, but that flavor is good!

Tomorrow I plan on trying a baked potato with salsa, black beans, cilantro, corn, jalapeno, and guac. I'm hoping it's as tasty as this salad!

Wow! Your food sounds so tasty!

Let us know how you go. Just make sure you're getting enough food, you might notice you need to eat more now or you might not feel too great. (So, maybe more than just one baked potato with salsa :P).
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#22 Old 08-09-2015, 05:00 AM
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I am really liking all the FOOD recommendations - I think variety is key to getting complete nutrition. One thing that can't hurt though is also taking a protein supplement.

I just ordered this pea protein yesterday to try out http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/no...YqQaAiDs8P8HAQ

I am trying really hard to be vegan, one month in. So far I think there have been several mess ups on my part but I understand these things just happen. One was a granola bar that had honey as an ingredient. Another was out of habit I have made a few of my old whey protein shakes after a workout, and another was eating some re-fried beans that I think used lard as an ingredient.

I say just go for it, and don't shoot yourself down if you make a mistake here and there...overall you will be doing the right thing!
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#23 Old 08-09-2015, 08:43 AM
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I am really liking all the FOOD recommendations - I think variety is key to getting complete nutrition. One thing that can't hurt though is also taking a protein supplement.

I just ordered this pea protein yesterday to try out http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/no...YqQaAiDs8P8HAQ

I am trying really hard to be vegan, one month in. So far I think there have been several mess ups on my part but I understand these things just happen. One was a granola bar that had honey as an ingredient. Another was out of habit I have made a few of my old whey protein shakes after a workout, and another was eating some re-fried beans that I think used lard as an ingredient.

I say just go for it, and don't shoot yourself down if you make a mistake here and there...overall you will be doing the right thing!
Just want to point out that shake has 35% RDA iron in a serving. If you're not low that might mess you up. So many people assume they;ll need more iron, but that's something you should be tested for before supplementing. Just my thoughts...
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#24 Old 08-09-2015, 03:57 PM
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oh my goodness you shouldn't be scared - you should be excited! There is SO much food you can have Beans are great for protein, but all food contains a little bit of protein anyway. Just as long as you get your 30-40g a day then you should be good. If in doubt, just add a spoon of peanut butter to something. Most people are fine for protein, it's b12 and iodine which people can become deficient in. I get b12 from fortified cereals and marmite, and then iodine from seaweed and nori.

I hope it goes well for you! I found it really exciting going vegan, as i now had all these different foods that i never really ate before. If you need any ideas for meals just message me and i can send you a few
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#25 Old 08-11-2015, 04:06 PM
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Just want to point out that shake has 35% RDA iron in a serving. If you're not low that might mess you up. So many people assume they;ll need more iron, but that's something you should be tested for before supplementing. Just my thoughts...
Thanks for pointing that out - one more thing on the list of "to research"
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