I am skeptical about soaking beans and discarding the soaking water helping to make them less "gassy." What I do think is that this causes many of the nutrients to be lost, gone with the water. Although certain beans should be soaked to cause toxins to be lost, gone with the water. Such as the tannic acid in the skin of beans with red skin.
Red lentils cook in 10 minutes.
"Fat is one thing that a lot of people are afraid of, but fat is an essential nutrient, imo."
"IMO by tuchis." Fat is scientifcally proven to be an essential nutrients. It is not a matter of opinion. You need the fatty acids. You actual need 2 different kinds of fatty acids, omega 6 and omega 3. Most fats in common usage in veg diets supply lots of omega 6 but very little of omega 3 fatty acids. You have to make sure you get a source of omega 3 fatty acids.
"it's hard NOT to get enough protein, unless you're anorexic or you're eating nothing but candy."
This is not true. You could easily have a diet high in starches and fats, and too low in protein. Want to eat lots of fruit for one meal, and then lots of rice with modest amount of vegetables added? You won't get enough protein. You'd need to add lots of the high-protein leafy green to the rice, and probably you'll need some legumes in addition. People who live on rice, vegetables, and other foods - when they run out of the other foods and try to survive on the rice alone, they develop protein deficiencies. If they are growing children and this goes on for more than a couple of months, they develop permanent developmental defects.
"...recommend somewhere between 2.5% and 15% of protein from calories"
Is this a typo? It doesn't make sense.
Good point about the spinach having lot of protein per calorie. The best vegetable for protein may be collard greens. Brocolli is one of the the runner-ups. I think of protein per dry weight, rather than protein per calorie. Dry beans have lots of protein per gram, because they are very dry. Dehydrated brocolli has more protein per gram than dry beans. Cooked brocolli had more protein per gram than cooked beans.
If you buy dry beans ALWAYS rinse and sort them before you cook them. I can't tell you how many rocks and little pebbles I frequently pick out of the beans I buy. I've had the misfortune of missing one here and there and my teeth were not happy!
If you crave cheese, eat a small chunk of dark chocolate! I went vegan overnight, so I don't know how well it works, but it could help because, like cow's milk has caso-morphines which bond the mothers with their children, chocolate contains chemicals that relax the mind and body!
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