Hi, I'm new and have some questions! - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 10-27-2009, 01:10 PM
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I am a new (aspiring) vegetarian!



I have cut down A LOT, and actually find the thought of eating meat sounds kind of gross now even after just a week of being meat free. I started mostly for health reason (me) and weight loss (for my husband.) While looking for recipes, I saw a lot of stuff that made me very unhappy. I always knew about cruelty to animals, but it was very different to read statistics and see the pictures



I am wondering if y'all (I'm in Texas )gradually became vegetarians or just cut out all meat/chicken/fish/etc at once? I'm finding it hard to cut out dairy. I guess I never realized just HOW much I use dairy and other things (butter, etc) until I started trying to give it all up!



I'd love some recommendations on cookbooks. We're not big on tofu. I don't really like "meat-substitutes" but prefer recipes that just don't have meat. For example, I don't want vegan meatloaf, I'd rather veggie stuffed potatoes.

Any ideas on a cook book that would suit me?



Thanks in advance, and I look forward to "talking" to y'all more!
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#2 Old 10-27-2009, 01:18 PM
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Hi, welcome We seem to have a lot of Texans joining lately



Personally I gave up meat gradually. I was vegetarian for about a decade before I researched veganism and decided it was something I needed to do, and I did that gradually as well. This approach seems to work for most people, but cold tofurky works for lots of people too! Just do what works for you



There are lots of substitutes for dairy products out there (if you can find them). Plant based milks can be used instead of cow's milk most of the time (it won't thicken instant pudding though - use the cooked kind instead). There are dairy free margarines available (check the ingredients - if you see one that says lactose free it's usually dairy free).



You certainly don't need meat substitutes and are better off without them. Beans are your friend



There are plenty of recipes here on the board and I really like vegweb.com as well.



Good luck!
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#3 Old 10-27-2009, 02:18 PM
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I saw that in the Intro section! So many Texans!



Thanks, I'm going to check out the recipes now!!
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#4 Old 10-27-2009, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fyvel View Post

Hi, welcome We seem to have a lot of Texans joining lately



Personally I gave up meat gradually. I was vegetarian for about a decade before I researched veganism and decided it was something I needed to do, and I did that gradually as well. This approach seems to work for most people, but cold tofurky works for lots of people too! Just do what works for you



There are lots of substitutes for dairy products out there (if you can find them). Plant based milks can be used instead of cow's milk most of the time (it won't thicken instant pudding though - use the cooked kind instead). There are dairy free margarines available (check the ingredients - if you see one that says lactose free it's usually dairy free).



You certainly don't need meat substitutes and are better off without them. Beans are your friend



There are plenty of recipes here on the board and I really like vegweb.com as well.



Good luck!



Same, I was vegetarian for 10/11 years and now I'm finally vegan. =) And I actually did the vegetarian process gradually, too, starting by cutting out red meat, then soon after chicken, then years later I finally stopped eating fish too.



I have a bit of a problem with people that always think I need something that resembles meat on my plate. I think it's a really old fashioned idea and most "specialised veggie" foods, like Quorn especially, are really not even particularly good for you and I've heard they're not ethically produced either. [From my mum - not sure how reliable that source is!]



Anyway, you can definitely still be healthy without special protein-rich meat replacements! It's such a good way to cut hundreds of calories out of a meal, eg. vegetarian lasagne, vegetarian pizza [who even notices the difference if there's a bit of salami missing?]. And they're still fatty enough. =P



Cranks do a really good veggie cookbook. =) I think they keep updating it so you might want to Google it to find the newest.



Have fun!
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#5 Old 10-27-2009, 02:37 PM
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Howdy! (Yeah I'm a Texan too.)



I went vegetarian cold tofurkey (HA!) but went more gradual with going vegan over the following 8 months. Cheese was hard to give up but after a week the world was okay and now I don't even see the appeal. Dang addictive foods.



Vegan with a Vengeance is a good cook book that doesn't use a lot of tofu/meat substitutes. My copy definitely looks like it's been through a kitchen war from all the use it gets here.
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#6 Old 10-27-2009, 07:40 PM
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Hi, and welcome to VB! I went cold tofurkey about a year and a half ago, but after a solid 6-8 months of reading about it and listening to Colleen Patrick-Goudreau's podcast, Vegetarian Food for Thought (check it out - it's informative)



But I am still not vegan. I cut out milk shortly after going veg and switched to rice milk, but I still eat cheese and I don't concern myself with trace dairy ingredients. Some people would disagree, but I believe every little bit counts!



Oh - one more thing - about the weight loss. Don't assume that going veg will automatically = weight loss for hubby. You have to be a little careful b/c veg food can be very fattening, just like anything else. Less likely if you're full-on vegan, but I imagine it's still possible to have a relatively high fat vegan diet.



As far as cookbooks, check out the New Moosewood cookbook or the recipes thread here on VB. VBers are your greatest resource!
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#7 Old 10-27-2009, 11:29 PM
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I started with the goal of being vegetarian for 21 days for health reasons, just to see if I could do it and had that much self-control. After about 10 days I felt so good that I thought I would try a vegan diet for the remaining 11 days. During the whole time I was trying new recipes and learning how to cook and enjoying it. I never looked back and just stuck with it.

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#8 Old 10-28-2009, 05:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by louise_12345 View Post




I have a bit of a problem with people that always think I need something that resembles meat on my plate.



I agree. I thought I'd have an easy time finding recipes without "meat substitutes" but most veg sites I looked at usually had the meat sub!





Quote:
Originally Posted by a7dk View Post


Oh - one more thing - about the weight loss. Don't assume that going veg will automatically = weight loss for hubby.



Oh, yes...I know =)

DH eats very unhealthy. He is always snacking. Since starting this, he's been more aware of what he eats. He's also always been a meat and potatoes kind of guy...he eats beef every single time we go out to a restaurant or on lunches at work. So cutting that alone will help!

I've always been a (fairly) healthy cook =)

It's when he's out of the house that's the problem
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#9 Old 10-30-2009, 01:23 AM
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I have been a vegetarian since day one.



Meat-substitutes are only to fool the omni.

My usual answer: I have never heard a convincing reason to eat meat.
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#10 Old 10-30-2009, 08:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stitchbug View Post




I am wondering if y'all (I'm in Texas )gradually became vegetarians or just cut out all meat/chicken/fish/etc at once? I'm finding it hard to cut out dairy. I guess I never realized just HOW much I use dairy and other things (butter, etc) until I started trying to give it all up!



I'd love some recommendations on cookbooks. We're not big on tofu. I don't really like "meat-substitutes" but prefer recipes that just don't have meat. For example, I don't want vegan meatloaf, I'd rather veggie stuffed potatoes.

Any ideas on a cook book that would suit me?



Thanks in advance, and I look forward to "talking" to y'all more!



I became a vegetarian for health reasons and made the change somewhat gradually. I began eliminating one meat type from my diet each week. As I learned more, I began to do it for animal welfare also, so I aimed to go vegan. Eggs, honey, leather... no problem... but for some reason I have trouble with dairy. I am taking it gradually. I'm learning to substitute with alternate products where I can and cutting back where I can't substitute.



I've used a lot of the recipes here. I also like Vegetarian Times magazine and cookbooks. The meals I make from always appeal to my omni family and friends, so they are also great for transitioning.
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#11 Old 10-30-2009, 08:56 AM
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After thinking about it for quite a while, I woke up one morning and decided I would not eat meat anymore. I googled and found this board. It has been, I believe, the primary reason that I have been able to maintain motivation. I have been meat-free for two months.



I am slowly making the switch to vegan.



Do not be too quick to give up on tofu. I have been using it with amazing results. I made a scrump-dilly-ump-tous chocolate peanutbutter pie this week and tacos last night. I mixed some of my tofu mixture into my husbands meat mixture and he said it was good. See the tofu thread in the food discussion forum. The recipe forum has been a life saver for me.
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#12 Old 10-31-2009, 04:21 PM
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Hi and welcome and good for you! I personally went cold turkey, Feb 18th this yr, and haven't looked back. Glad I did it.



I love Nava Atlas' cookbooks. SHe has a Vegetarian 5 ingredient cookbook that is excellent, and I think I have her low fat one too. She has cookbooks that are seperately for vegetarians, and some that are vegan.



I went veg for health reasons too, but you can't ignore the AR issues at hand. As far as your hubbs goes for losing weight, like someone else above said...you still have to watch your calories.



Calories in is still calories in! Make your calories count, by eating whole grains, for your complex carbs, fruits, veggies, and watch the simple sugars. Just because it doesn't have meat in it, doesn't mean it's healthy!



Good luck!

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#13 Old 10-31-2009, 04:35 PM
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Added: Forgot to mention that www.allrecipes.com has a very large vegetarian selection of recipes to choose from. That site gives the nutritional data also...has been a real godsend for caloric/fiber/fat needs.

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#14 Old 11-01-2009, 02:46 AM
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I am not a vegan. I still eat dairy (no eggs unless they're baked in stuff), and I'm ok with that. I'm not sure, are you trying to go veg. or vegan? Personally I think 1 can be better for some than others.



As far as the meat I cut out red meat first then white. It took me 1 1/2 years total, but it was so easy! I found it was really the convenience of grabbing a chicken sandwich or something that was hardest to give up.
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#15 Old 11-02-2009, 07:38 AM
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Well I have only just joined and this is exactly what I was wondering! I wanted to cut out meat automatically, straight away. I have ALMOST done this but I can't call my self a full blown veggie yet, as I have been eating fish for the past couple of weeks (I have been a veggie, or trying to be, for about 6 weeks). I really want to stop, how did those who cut meet out straight away do it!?
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#16 Old 11-02-2009, 07:55 AM
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Well, I was born to veggie parents, so I really have no advice on the giving up of meat part. As far dairy...I've been trying to give it up for years now (I feel like it's harder to do when you live with a full blown omni, when I was living by myself, I was doing much better, diet and dairy-wise). Anyway, I did give up the dairy gradually the first time, but I am going to go cold turkey come Jan first. I wouldn't give up on tofu just yet, by itself it's pretty bland, but if baked into a pot pie, it gives it what it needs, with out you going 'oh, that's tofu' when you take a bite.



Also, Oreo's are vegan. Don't let your husband use that as an excuse to not eat his vegetables!

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#17 Old 11-02-2009, 07:56 PM
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Hi, I as well am just starting a Vegitarian diet, actually I call myself Flexitarian, as I still eat meat when I cannot find anything else. I will try some of the books here they sound interesting to me. I am a lot like you, Tofu is not what I am looking for and finding a good meat substitute is very hard to do. There must be some recipes out there somewhere that do not use these things and are still good. Good Luck to you.

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#18 Old 11-03-2009, 12:15 AM
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Flexitarian! Though I like the sound of that very much, I think I will go cold turkey as I can't imagine doing it successfully any other way! My ex who was a vegetarian used to say how much he craved a raw steak every now and then! i am a bit worried about the cravings too, but I haven't really had many yet..well, appart from fish!
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#19 Old 11-05-2009, 12:34 PM
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liz, as far as how to go cold turkey....I don't know....you just do. Like quitting smoking or other bad vices. You make a decision and you keep with it. I didn't suffer from craving, really, so I don't know how to answer that either.



Being a flexitarian is how I thought I would start out, but quickly just went to a veggie. Good luck. Don't procrastinate for too long, as it'll make it harder...why wait till Jan 1? Just do it!

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#20 Old 11-05-2009, 12:38 PM
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It's easier than I thought, for sure. I'm not even eating fish anymore, which I figured I'd eat for a while (along with chicken, occasionally)

I never thought I'd just cut them all out at once, but the more I read, the more guilty I felt even thinking about eating meat. I wouldnt call myself a veggie yet, as I'm not checking ingredient lists as much as I should, but I'm pretty close!
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#21 Old 11-09-2009, 09:38 AM
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I've been a vegetarian since I was 8. Now 16. I went straight into it. Not eating anything at all. Red and white meat, fish, gelatine, the lot. I really do want to be vegan but my mum won't let me cause she's worried I'll get ill. So I have to wait till I leave home for that. I didn't find it hard with giving up meat at all as all I ate for the first 8 years of my life was chicken and the occasional sausage. I haven't eaten gravy since I was about 2 cause I hated the stuff. Haven't even bothered trying vege gravy. The thing I found hard was the sweets and normal foods you wouldn't originally think would contain meat. Although I have recently found vegan marshmallows and haribo so will be ordering them very soon. I've been with my boyfriend 1 year and 9 months now and he eats meat but ocassionally I do cook him meat such as curry or tuna. But a lot of the time when we have dinner at home together he's perfectly fine eating meat free dinners that we cook together. I love being a vegetarian and am very proud of it.
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#22 Old 11-11-2009, 06:30 PM
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hi pals, am new to this forum... am a vegeterian.... i have one doubt... which food has more calories, veg food items or non-veg food items?
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