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Hello,
I have been vegetarian for 3 months now, I recently have cut out my dairy too as I am lactose intolerant (self diagnosed) however throughout the whole time being vegetarian I have been sniffing a lot and had at least a tiny cold. I have been eating as healthy as possible and way more healthy than I used to be before becoming vegetarian. I never used to get colds at all I used to have a really strong immune system and I want to stay vegetarian because I don't want to eat meat ever again. Any suggestions or ideas on what I need to eat?
 

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Impeach the gangster
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If you're feeling sickly or run down, you may have a nutritional deficiency. The thing is, it's impossible to guess what might be lacking. I recommend having a simple blood-panel done, to find out where you stand. Earlier this year, I was feeling chronically worn out, and was concerned I might have contracted Lymes disease, because I had had a tick on me several months before. I saw a doctor (first time in many years, because my health is generally pretty good.) Turns out, I didn't have Lymes disease, but had a severe deficiency of vitamin D. So, I started supplementing, and very soon, was feeling fine again. The point is, trying to guess your way to good health can lead to a lot of frustration. You need some hard knowledge about what's going on.

There's also the question of whether you're eating enough food. Cutting out meat and dairy can produce a sharp drop in calories taken in. You may just need to eat more, but again, it's best to know your specific nutritional needs, so you can tailor your diet effectively.

Best of luck to you. Hope you're feeling better soon!
 
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Vegan since 1991
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Hi Char,

You could simply be sick with a cold, or you could be allergic to one of the new foods that you are eating. Or, it could be some other, entirely different problem. Your physician can help to determine what's going on.

However, the most common mistake made by new vegetarians is not eating enough calories. This mistake is easy to make, because beans, whole grains, fruit, and vegetables are very low in calories compared to meat and dairy.

No doubt you are eating healthy foods, but you may not be eating enough food to obtain sufficient calories. Your entire body, including your immune system, is fueled by calories.

Look how low in calories these plant foods are, compared to animal foods:

Watermelon: 30 calories per 100 grams

Peach: 39 calories per 100 g

Potato, boiled, with skin: 87 calories per 100 g

Pinto beans, boiled: 143 calories per 100g

Chicken breast, skinless, roasted: 165 calories per 100 g

Ground beef, 90% lean, broiled: 217 calories per 100 g

Cheese, mozzarella, grated: 300 calories per 100 g

(Calorie data: http://nutritiondata.self.com/ )


You can use this website to estimate your daily calorie needs: http://www.calorieking.com/interactive-tools/how-many-calories-should-you-eat/ . Be sure to select from the "weight loss", "weight maintenance", and "weight gain" options.

Then, just remember this calorie rule-of-thumb:

One cup of boiled beans / lentils is about 240 calories

One cup of boiled grains / pasta is about 200 calories

One cup of fresh (not dried) fruit is 40 - 100 calories

One cup of non-starchy vegetables (spinach, kale, etc.) is 5 - 40 calories

One cup of nuts or seeds is 700 - 1000 calories


Mercy for Animals has published a free, nicely-written Vegetarian Guide. The nutrition part of the guide starts on page 7: http://www.mercyforanimals.org/files/VSG.pdf
 
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Not such a Beginner ;)
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Hi Char,

You could simply be sick with a cold, or you could be allergic to one of the new foods that you are eating. Or, it could be some other, entirely different problem. Your physician can help to determine what's going on.

However, the most common mistake made by new vegetarians is not eating enough calories. This mistake is easy to make, because beans, whole grains, fruit, and vegetables are very low in calories compared to meat and dairy.

No doubt you are eating healthy foods, but you may not be eating enough food to obtain sufficient calories. Your entire body, including your immune system, is fueled by calories.

Look how low in calories these plant foods are, compared to animal foods:

Watermelon: 30 calories per 100 grams

Peach: 39 calories per 100 g

Potato, boiled, with skin: 87 calories per 100 g

Pinto beans, boiled: 143 calories per 100g

Chicken breast, skinless, roasted: 165 calories per 100 g

Ground beef, 90% lean, broiled: 217 calories per 100 g

Cheese, mozzarella, grated: 300 calories per 100 g

(Calorie data: http://nutritiondata.self.com/ )


You can use this website to estimate your daily calorie needs: http://www.calorieking.com/interactive-tools/how-many-calories-should-you-eat/ . Be sure to select from the "weight loss", "weight maintenance", and "weight gain" options.

Then, just remember this calorie rule-of-thumb:

One cup of boiled beans / lentils is about 240 calories

One cup of boiled grains / pasta is about 200 calories

One cup of fresh (not dried) fruit is 40 - 100 calories

One cup of non-starchy vegetables (spinach, kale, etc.) is 5 - 40 calories

One cup of nuts or seeds is 700 - 1000 calories


Mercy for Animals has published a free, nicely-written Vegetarian Guide. The nutrition part of the guide starts on page 7: http://www.mercyforanimals.org/files/VSG.pdf
This!

Also the sniffling might be due to an environmental allergy.
 

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Try taking a multivitamin. I have heard those morning cold buster tablets work. Try switching up the diet, getting exercise, and more sleep.

venusvegan.wordpress.com
 
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