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Hello,<br><br>
Let me introduce myself. My name is Liz and I live in Oklahoma. I am fairly new to the vegetarian way of life but I can say it has been fun and I feel alot better. The best part was when my roomate made some fresh whole wheat and soy bread and we used some soy butter and OH MY GOSH was that out of this world.<br><br>
But on to my biggest question I have is this;<br><br>
I have always heard that a person absolutley needs some type of meat in their diet, I think this is false due to so many other countries having large vegetarian diets. Is there something like amino acids or a multi vitamen we should be taking ?<br><br>
I am an active person and we are going to be starting back to the gym next week. I want to keep the muscle I have and I know I will need to take in sufficient protien to maintain my muscle. Any help would be appreciated because I really would rather stay away from meat.<br><br><br><br>
Thanks<br><br>
Liz
 

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If you're not eating any animal products at all then the one vitamin you will be lacking is vitamin B12. Many vegetarian foods such as Soy Milk are fortified with this vitamin, but it's advisable to take a B12 supplement to stay on the safe side.<br><br><br><br>
That's about it. You can check out <a href="http://www.veganhealth.org" target="_blank">www.veganhealth.org</a> for a very good article on the benefits and risks of a vegetarian diet and tips for staying healthy.
 

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<span style="color:#008000;">Hi Liz <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/hi.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":hi:"><br><br><br><br>
I'm another Oklahoman who doesn't eat animals. I've been vegetarian since 1989, and vegan for more than a year now. I'm active too, I'm a runner and I do some weightlifting, though only a little to build my arms a bit so I'm not all quads, lol. Trust me when I say that it's definitely possible to be active, fit and muscular and be a veg*n.<br><br>
Kpickell has a good point about the B12, but it's easy if you drink Silk Enhanced soymilk (you can find it lots of places) and take a supplement.<br><br>
I've never felt better or been healthier than I am now as an active vegan.<br><br><br><br>
Where are you in Oklahoma?<br><br>
If you have any questions or whatever, or want to talk to another Oklahoman, we have a thread here on VB just for that purpose. You can find it <a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=5482" target="_blank">here</a>.<br><br>
I don't know if you've had the pleasure of meeting our VB mom, Life2k, but she's one incredible lady, and she's from our home state. Feel free to pop in there and say hello if you are so inclined.<br><br><br><br>
Always nice to see another Oklahoman here! Hope to see you around the boards.<br><br><br><br></span>
 

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Hi Liz,<br><br><br><br>
It definitely is not necessary to eat meat. So many people here can tell you much better they feel without meat in their lives. And yes, B12 is the only vitamin that cannot reliably be obtained from plant foods. It is found in dairy and eggs as well as animal flesh. A good multivitamin is a good idea for everyone, IMO, not just vegetarians.<br><br><br><br>
Don't worry too much about protein. We've been led to believe we need a lot more than we actually need. Believe me, it is VERY easy to get enough protein. Basically, if you're eating a normal amount of calories, you're getting enough protein. The only exceptions might be if you were eating nothing but candy or nothing but fruit.<br><br><br><br>
Try this link for some tips to help you get started:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=50249" target="_blank">The Tip of the Day Thread</a>
 

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If you can find it, you can also get B12 from nutritional yeast. It sounds (and looks) weird but tastes really good. It's addictive.
 

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There are many vegetarian and a number of vegan athletes out there, some of whom have won amazing feats of athleticism, like the record-breaking 135-mile Badwater Ultramarathon two-time champion vegan <a href="http://www.scottjurek.com/" target="_blank">Scott Jurek</a> (among his other 100-mile+ accomplishments).<br><br><br><br>
If you're worried about the impact of veganism or vegetarianism on fitness, these pages might allay your concerns as well:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.brendanbrazier.com/" target="_blank">http://www.brendanbrazier.com/</a><br><br><a href="http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/" target="_blank">http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/</a><br><br><a href="http://www.veganfitness.net/" target="_blank">http://www.veganfitness.net/</a><br><br><a href="http://www.vegancycling.com/" target="_blank">http://www.vegancycling.com/</a>
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>codemonkey</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
If you can find it, you can also get B12 from nutritional yeast. It sounds (and looks) weird but tastes really good. It's addictive.</div>
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Only if the nutritional yeast has been fortified with B12, such as Red Star Nutritional Yeast. Some brands are not fortified. (just an fyi)
 

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For b12 I just grow cyanocobalamin cultures in my cupboard and eat that once a week.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
...well it COULD be just moldy bread, but theres a chance its b12... right?<br><br><br><br><br><br>
ahem.<br><br><br><br><br><br><br><br>
but about protien, its not really a concern with veg*ns, the links above explain alot - but pretty much you need an amino acid complex, not just a big umbrella term "protien". Most all foods have a different amount of the different amino acids - if you eat a balanced diet then you will get ample supply of them all throughout the day.<br><br><br><br>
Just think how big and muscular an elephant is. Elephants are herbivores. They do just fine and don't eat any gazelle. If a huge elephant does fine on just plants, a human can too. (this is the analogy I use when people bug me about protien... just not as nicely put)
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>troub</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
Just think how big and muscular an elephant is. Elephants are herbivores. They do just fine and don't eat any gazelle. If a huge elephant does fine on just plants, a human can too. (this is the analogy I use when people bug me about protien... just not as nicely put)</div>
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Oh, I like that! Not sure it will stop my mother phoning for regular updates on how many grams of protein I've been eating, but it might work on other folks.
 

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That's not a very good analogy. Elephants are ungulates. I don't think humans would do very well on an ungulate diet. If you want to compare humans to other animals, why not compare us to our nearest cousins, the great apes, with whom we actually share the vast majority of our biological characteristics?
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Tesseract</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
That's not a very good analogy. Elephants are ungulates. I don't think humans would do very well on an ungulate diet. If you want to compare humans to other animals, why not compare us to our nearest cousins, the great apes, with whom we actually share the vast majority of our biological characteristics?</div>
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It's a terrible comparison from a biological standpoint, yes. But if I'm after science, I refer to published, peer-reviewed research. When that fails, I'm going to assume assume good science isn't the right approach with the individual in question, and pull out the old elephant analogy.<br><br><br><br>
Of course, it might be met with, "Dude, you're so not an elephant!," in which case I'll have to look again. Probalby, this will need some field testing. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/tongue3.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":p"><br><br><br><br>
And I'm wandering off topic here, sorry Luvtoscuba! If you're really nervous about your protein intake, even after reading up a little more, you might try logging your diet with a nutrition tracker for a few days, like the one at fitday.com. It won't break things down to the specific essential amino acids, but it will reassure you that it's pretty darn easy to get protein without touching animal products. Good luck!
 
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