Calcium sources?? (New vegan) and parent issues - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 03-21-2015, 03:23 AM
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Calcium sources?? (New vegan) and parent issues

So I am a new vegan (as of yesterday heheh). I was a veggie for two years prior to this, so at home I cook my own dinner and so eating vegan food is not generally a problem for me. But my parents are really not keen on veganism.... Like REALLY not keen. So I haven't told them yet of my vegan plans ahahah. It doesn't help that my mum has a few "vegetarian" friends at her workplace all who which eat fish and are quite heavy on the cheese (most are overweight!!). One of her friends was vegan but couldn't manage it so gave up and so my mum has the opinion that its a really unhealthy and nutritionally incomplete diet.
I have been eating largely vegan foods for the past few months (I can't resist chocolate when it's offered to me..) and my parents have even commented to me about how healthy I look!! They haven't really noticed that I've taken dairy and eggs out of my diet, other than I said no to a piece of cake, but I think they put it down to me being healthy as I'm quite a health conscious person. However I don't plan to tell them about my new vegan diet until I have all of my nutrition sorted. The only thing I'm struggling to get enough of is calcium- any ideas?? I eat some sources of it including chickpeas, tahini, almonds, kale and edamame, but this isn't really enough
I sometimes drink alpro almond milk, but my mum only buys it for me 1-2 times a month as she thinks its too expensive
One last question, how to deal with the social side of going vegan? I can deal with friends not understanding and poking fun at me, but when close family (esp my older sister!) say things like this, I find it really hard to deal with.
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#2 Old 03-21-2015, 04:38 AM
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I use tums for calcium because I don't get enough according to whoever set it at 1g
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#3 Old 03-21-2015, 12:56 PM
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White beans, black-eyed peas, bok choy, kale, blackstrap molasses, almonds, and sesame seeds are some good sources of calcium.
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#4 Old 03-21-2015, 02:33 PM
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Thanks! I haven't tried black eyed peas (are they the same as black eyed beans?) or bok choy, so I'll give those a go
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#5 Old 03-21-2015, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Rebecca623 View Post
Thanks! I haven't tried black eyed peas (are they the same as black eyed beans?) or bok choy, so I'll give those a go
Yes I think so; we call them black eyed peas here.
I googled for an image and got this:

Lol, but I added 'legume' and got this



And Bok choy is great in stir fries! I get it at an Asian market.
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#6 Old 03-21-2015, 07:56 PM
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In addition to what others have said, figs are a great source of calcium too (though not that cheap). I found this list that sums up some of the best source of plant based calcium:

http://www.care2.com/greenliving/25-...r-calcium.html
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#7 Old 03-22-2015, 01:19 AM
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Why don't you show your mum a documentary like forks over knives about plant based nutrition. Or you could give her a book like the china study. Alternatively you could read/ watch these and tell her about it.
There is vegan everything: meat, cheese, chocolate, milk, eggs, honey, etc.
As for calcium leafy greens are your best friend, try to include them 1-2 times a day. Almonds, sesame, figs are good too.
Try making your own plant milks. You can google recipes. You will want to buy a nut milk bag though. That saves a lot of money. Although soy, oat, and rice milk are fairly inexpensive.
Nutritionally speaking you don't need a milk replacement so that's just a taste issue.
For the social side just make sure you bring your own food to things. If it's tasty looking that can help. I don't actually tell people I'm vegan unless there cooking for me. Just say no thanks to food offered, people probably wont ask for a reason. Also try to have a good response for when people ask why you are vegan. I simply say ' I don't think animals deserve to die for my convenience' or something similar to shut people up.


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#8 Old 03-22-2015, 03:53 AM
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Thanks so much for the replies everyone, they've all been really helpful and I didn't expect anyone to reply at all, so having this support is great
I haven't seen forks over knives myself yet, although I have looked for it on you tube and google, but it doesn't seem to be freely available. I've seen Vegucated, so I might watch that with my mum.
My main meals are all vegan as I obviously make my breakfast and lunch myself, and I do cook my own dinner at home too, which I always make vegan. I've been cooking my own dinner for a while as I've been veggie for the past 2.5 years. So finding vegan products is not really an issue for me as I don't feel I need them thankfully. However I always fall down with things like chocolate and cake. I know vegan recipes and vegan chocolate exist, but it's a matter of willpower at the moment really. And that I get some pretty weird looks from my friends when I turn down a choc brownie!! So I guess there's also a bit of peer pressure to fit in too.
Haha yeah I know there's no actual need for a milk replacement, but as a self confirmed porridge addict, it's nice to have some almond/hazelnut milk with my porridge in the mornings, or making my oats with water gets a little tedious after a while!!
Luxray, I really really like that response to the "why vegan" question, for me it just seems to sum up my values in one sentence. I will make sure to use it!
I seem to have the calcium issue sorted now, massive thanks to everyone who responded with that!! You're all officially awesome
Now I just have to go about actually bringing up the topic with my mum. This is the most difficult bit for me, as I feel like my mum will be very disappointed in me for not following our "family lifestyle". When I turned veggie, there was lots of tears and it was stressful for both my mum and I for about a year afetr. I have only really built up my relationship with my mum again in the last year or so and I am desperate for this to not happen again. I am also under a LOT of stress at school, anyone who's done A Levels will understand me. My school is one of the most academic grammar schools in England, so I'm under a lot if pressure at the moment, and I really do not want to be creating extra stress at home. Can anyone tell me how they went about talking to their parents about going vegan?? Whats the best way to bring it up? How did it go for you?
I know all parents are different, but hearing about other people's experiences will make it easier I hope.
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#9 Old 03-22-2015, 06:06 AM
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Make your own milk then? Or go for oat/rice.
I don't really get the peer pressure thing bc no one has haver said anything to me if I've turned down food. All I can suggest is have a stash of vegan goodies and if your buying stuff encourage your friends to go for oreos, gingernuts, dark choc, etc.
My parents were okay with it, I explained that I wanted to eat healthier (that was my main reason at the time) and later after explaining the ethical/ environmental side they went vegan over time.


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#10 Old 03-22-2015, 07:03 AM
just add raisins
 
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Sainsbury's value UHT soya milk is the same price as the cows milk - 65p a litre, and it's got added calcium, vitamin B12 and D2. I use it all the time for cooking and making yoghurt.

If you want to go even cheaper, Holland and Barratt sell vegan calcium supplements. Buy them during one of their many buy-one-get-one-half-price/for-99p sales and they work out at a few pence a day.
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#11 Old 03-22-2015, 07:06 AM
just add raisins
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rebecca623 View Post
...
Now I just have to go about actually bringing up the topic with my mum. This is the most difficult bit for me, as I feel like my mum will be very disappointed in me for not following our "family lifestyle". When I turned veggie, there was lots of tears and it was stressful for both my mum and I for about a year afetr. I have only really built up my relationship with my mum again in the last year or so and I am desperate for this to not happen again. I am also under a LOT of stress at school, anyone who's done A Levels will understand me. My school is one of the most academic grammar schools in England, so I'm under a lot if pressure at the moment, and I really do not want to be creating extra stress at home. Can anyone tell me how they went about talking to their parents about going vegan?? Whats the best way to bring it up? How did it go for you?
I know all parents are different, but hearing about other people's experiences will make it easier I hope.
Is there any reason you need to have a big discussion about it? I'd wait for her to notice, and then just say you're trying it out to see how you get on, rather than making any dramatic statement.
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#12 Old 03-22-2015, 07:10 AM
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My situation is a little different than yours in that I was 28 or 29 when I went vegan, but I treated it as a kinda game. I never told them and was seeing how long it would take them to figure it out.
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#13 Old 03-22-2015, 07:15 AM
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That's actually what I've been doing recently, and neither of my parents have noticed. But sooner or later they're going to ask about it, and I don't want to create tension. I don't want either of my parents to think that I'm doing things behind their back, I'm still young and living with them all the time, so I think they'd feel a bit put out if I made such an important decision without them.
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#14 Old 03-22-2015, 07:25 AM
just add raisins
 
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When I went vegan, I wasn't sure how successful I was going to be. I didn't tell anyone for the first month or two, not because I was hiding anything from them but because I wasn't sure if I was going to stick it out. You could use the same reasoning if they find out and accuse you of trying to hide something, but honestly as a young adult you have a right to agency over your own body and you don't have to get their permission, so it might be best to just keep it low key until you can say "hey, I've been trying out this new diet for Xweeks and it seems to be working pretty well", and they'll have less ammunition to try to talk you out of it if they can see you're looking well and know your stuff about how to cover all your vitamins and minerals and whatnot.
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#15 Old 03-22-2015, 07:50 AM
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Yes as dropscone says knowing about nutrition is a huge plus. Assuming your family is similar to mine, none of them will ever worry about your eating habits if you know a lot more about the subject than they do. Plus, you know, you will be healthier.
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#16 Old 03-23-2015, 12:04 PM
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Thank you for all of the advice!! It's great to know that there are supportive people, out there in a seemingly non vegan world
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#17 Old 03-23-2015, 12:32 PM
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Hi Rebecca

Just as an aside, you can watch Forks over Knives here (for now, it could be removed again!)
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#18 Old 03-24-2015, 01:32 PM
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Thanks for the link TheHappyBeans!! I will be sure to check it out
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#19 Old 03-24-2015, 01:39 PM
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Thanks to everyone who has replied so far- you have been great I told my mum about "trying" veganism for the two weeks during Easter holidays (spring break for those in the US). She told me that I wouldn't be healthy enough, as my diet would be far too restricted and not varied enough and I needed the dairy for strong bones. I know this not to be true, but each time I tried to tell her that calcium could be gotten from other sources, she came up with an excuse. The main excuse was that I needed varied sources of nutrients, and getting calcium from leafy greens, nuts and pulses was not varied (but getting calcium from just dairy was!?!?). I don't know what to do next. My mum cannot actually do anything, as she said to me, she cannot force me to eat or not eat anything. But I do want to get along with my mum and make this as smooth as possible.
I can't use resources from the Internet either, as she will then tell me that I have been brainwashed and doing too much research!!
When I told her about the ethics behind the dairy and egg industry she told me I was reading too far into things...
What can I do?? I feel lost and unsupported
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#20 Old 03-27-2015, 09:21 AM
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That's tough, all I can say is you might just have to wait it out. After some time she will see that you are healthy and eating a varied diet. If I were you I'd keep bombarding her with the facts- thats just my personality you may want to avoid confrontation. Remember why your doing this and hang on to it, in the end we have to remember no matter how unsupportive people are the lives of animals matter more.


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#21 Old 05-02-2015, 01:23 PM
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aperantly millk is actualy bad for your bones it turns you all acidy and your body compinsates by striping alcaline calcium from teeth and bones also someone said fortifid soya millk with calcium and b12 that calcium is in organic and cant be exorbed by the body and i bet the b12 is made of cyanide no joke
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#22 Old 05-02-2015, 01:46 PM
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Calcium sources?? (New vegan) and parent issues

Tell them but don't act as if it's a big deal or wait for a shocked response. Tell them off hand, if they ask about it tell your reasons matter of factly. If they keep pressing why this why that, you do have answers for everything right?

My experience was that they accepted my decisions without question. Nobody makes jabs at me either. Sorry it's not like that for some of you. Family not accepting you is the hardest thing.

edit: sorry didn't see that you already told. I think you should just wait it out. She'll come around. Tell her you love her no matter what, That usually helps.

Last edited by rasitha.wijesekera; 05-02-2015 at 01:49 PM.
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#23 Old 05-03-2015, 01:59 AM
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I hope things with your mother improve. The best thing you can do now is live as healthy a life as you can manage. Like it or not, you're now a representative of veganism in your mother's eyes, so any illness or weakness on your part will be blamed on your diet. If you show her that you're active, that you're maintaining a healthy weight, and that you're happy and satisfied with your life choices, she'll eventually have to accept that veganism isn't dangerous.
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#24 Old 07-11-2015, 10:00 AM
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Peas, spinach, broccoli or vegan yogurt are, to me, the best sources of calcium everything you need can be found in plants, except vitamin b12. Make sure to take b12 shots or capsules with it. Good luck with your mom. You could find some scientific studies on veganism and show them to her.
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#25 Old 07-11-2015, 10:35 AM
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Sometimes becoming veg can be hard on parents -- they worry about your health, and they think it is an inconvenience. It is great that you are cooking your own dinners -- cooking is a wonderful skill to have in general, and especially as a vegan. I wonder if you have tried cooking for your family too? You could veganize a family favorite, or try something new. Let us know if you need ideas for recipes.

If your mom is concerned about nutrition, show her that you have done your homework. My favorite websites for vegan nutrition information are theveganrd.com and veganhealth.org, both of which are written by vegan registered dietitians (US certification for nutrition experts). For a general overview, I would recommend the plant plate: http://www.theveganrd.com/food-guide-for-vegans
From that website, here are the recommendations for calcium:
Quote:
Make sure you are getting plenty of calcium by choosing leafy green vegetables, calcium-set tofu, soynuts, tempeh, fortified plant milks or yogurt, fortified juice, dried figs, almonds, or tahini.
Here is some more detailed info on calcium: http://www.veganhealth.org/articles/bones
In particular, calcium from various plants foods is absorbed differently, so use this information to pick food where the calcium is more easily absorbed:
Quote:
Studies have shown that calcium in fortified soymilk, bok choy, kale, and mustard greens is absorbed well.
Based on oxalate levels, the calcium in turnip greens, watercress, and broccoli should also be absorbed well.
Based on oxalate levels, the calcium in collards should be absorbed moderately well.
Studies have shown that the calcium in spinach and rhubarb is not absorbed well.
Based on oxalate levels, the calcium in beet greens and swiss chard should not be absorbed well.
If you want some special vegan foods and can't buy them yourself, maybe you can save up some money to help offset the cost? Or, if you don't have money, maybe you can do some extra chores around the house to help out in exchange?
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#26 Old 01-16-2016, 09:39 AM
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_________

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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