Hi, sit down, grab a cup of tea and a cookie, let’s talk about vegan weight loss and stuff.
The first thing you need to know is that you don’t need to go vegan or vegetarian to lose weight. Full stop.
Why do I say this? I’m vegetarian myself, so don’t all vegans want other people to join?
Yes we do. (we also want to conquer the world and make all people eat nothing but grass, lol) Being vegetarian or vegan is beneficial for your health particularly, and for environment globally as well.
So why do I tell you that you don’t need vegan weight loss diet?
Because this is the fact.
If your goal is to lose weight, you need to follow the main principles of creating a certain type of calorie deficit and stimulating your metabolism. This does not obligatory include vegan weight loss diet, so if you have been considering going vegan ONLY to lose weight – think twice.
There is a good reason behind thinking twice.
Vegan Weight Loss Diet: Not a Panacea
I love the idea of most people going vegan (grass is yummy), but one has to understand how to do that, efficiently, without stress, and for the long-term. I don’t want another disappointed person, who tried to go vegan and follow vegetarian diet for weight loss, failed, and now tells everyone around from own experience that vegetarian diet is too complicated, unsatisfactory, and crappy for weight loss.
Vegan weight loss diet is a good idea, but…
You can lose weight following vegan diet.
You can gain weight following vegan diet.
You can gain muscle on vegan diet (check my friend’s incredible physique, for example)
So it all depends.
Why Go Vegan: Health Benefits
Vegan weight loss diet is a popular decision many people consider. In fact, considering my own experience and experience of many friends (I have a lot of vegans and vegetarians around), vegan dieting has more to do with health and general level of energy than with weight loss. I know people who managed to gain weight after becoming vegetarians (meaning they actually became fatter, yup), and I myself had an experience of gaining weight on purpose after I found out I was underweight at some moment.
So if you consider vegan weight loss diet, here are the benefits you will enjoy:
- easily digested foods – obviously your body will find it easier to cope with vegetables than with cooked meat.
- improved digestion – plant-based foods does not create unnecessary workload for digestive system and emits less toxic elements the body has to get rid of later. Also, more fiber in diet means less constipations.
- more energy during the day – since you don’t throw all your energy on digestion after each meal, obviously you have more of it (energy, not meal).
- better teeth – it may seem counterintuitive, but most people notice their teeth condition improves after they go vegan. This happens because the saliva changes its chemical formula and becomes more alcalinous rather than acidic. As a consequence, enamel is not ruined that much by aggressive chemicals in saliva.
- clearer skin – skin condition improves due to less animal hormones ingested with foods, less toxins from undigested parts of meat, and also due to less acidic formula of sweat and skin fat which cause irritation and inflammation.
- decreased breath odor – less constipations means less rotten foods in your digestive system, therefore, less odor.
- decreased perspiration odor – less acidic sweat and less toxins in food overall starve the bacteria on skin, and those produce less excrements on skin, which actually cause the smell.
- decreased feet smell in case one has it – the same reason as with sweat.
- emotional stability due to decreased levels of artificial hormones digested with meat – hormones rule our emotions. If you have additional hormones in your bloodstream, it can result in anything from hysterical condition or depression, to cancer. No jokes here.
- treatment of any sickness goes faster – this mainly happens due to cleaner intestine, because intestine supports the life of useful bacteria in our bodies, and these bacteria influence the immune system in a number of ways. Plus plant-based foods provides more vitamins and elements that also support immune cells in blood.
As you can see, following vegan diet is extremely beneficial for health and general well-being, and these benefits I listed are not the whole list, because most people can add several more issues they managed with vegan diet.
However, not a word about losing weight. So, is vegan dieting to lose weight is useless?
You Can Lose Weight Going Vegan, But…
In fact, you really can lose weight – and you most probably will – if you follow vegan or vegetarian diet. This will happen mostly due to the fact that the amount of fat food (which is generally meat) will decrease in your meals.
Also, less constipation means you will not carry excessive pounds of poop in your belly (gross, eh?). Feeling lighter and having more energy, you will probably move a bit more and get more pleasure from movement.
However, there is a problem lurking here.
…You’ll Probably Gain It Back
If not talking about excessive amount of old poop in the intestine (eeew), losing weight following vegan dieting is possible due to sudden calorie deficit. If you eat fatty meaty meals before, and suddenly switch to light salads, you get calorie deficit. The body will start burning fats from its own reservoirs, and the weight will be decreasing for some time.
And then – boom! – you definitely hit the weight loss plateau. This is inevitable, because this is the circle of weight loss processes based on approach of pure calorie deficit. After you hit the weight loss plateau, you are most likely to enter weight cycling and gain some weight again.
This is the danger of vegan dieting to lose weight.
At the point of weight loss plateau, most people believe they failed again, that their diet is another useless crappy idea not worth the paper it is written on, and leave. Now, they are confident that vegan diet is a piece of shit, will tell that anyone who asks, and this will be pure truth for them, according to their life experience.
So, should you switch to vegan dieting to improve your health and start living a better life? Definitely YES.
Should you follow vegan dieting only for the sake of weight loss? I DON’T RECOMMEND THAT…
Unless you know how to deal with weight loss plateau and weight cycling.