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Is a Vegetarian Diet the Ultimate Fat Loss Diet for weight loss?

May
28
May 28, 2019

Losing weight has become a constant challenge for millions of people, and one that few seem able to conquer for good.

According to many experts, the better way to lose weight might be going vegetarian. In recent years, millions of people have taken meat off their plates in order to finally meet their weight loss goals, gain muscle mass and become healthier overall. A growing number of people are switching to plant-based diets.

However adding to the accumulating evidence that a vegetarian diet might be the best way possible to blast off your unwanted fat. Vegetarian and vegan diets have been linked to lower rates of coronary heart disease, diabetes, obesity and premature death. Switching to a vegetarian weight loss diet isn't easy, though; be prepared to make major lifestyle changes and reinvent your meals.

The key to losing weight fast on a vegetarian diet is to eat clean. Fries, potato chips, ice cream and tofu deli meats are all vegetarian friendly, but this doesn't mean they're healthy and nutritious. Your daily calories should come from whole and minimally processed foods.

Why Other Weight Loss Strategies Come Up Short

Thousands of people start new diets every year, but a sad few are seeing any real results. In fact, 85% of dieters end up gaining their lost weight back within twelve months. Part of the problem comes from a faulty understanding of how weight loss works. The three diet beliefs below are widely accepted, but in truth they are likely you to lead you to long term failure in reaching your weight loss goals.

Cutting Out Fat : Many dieters assume that giving up meat and fish will automatically lead to weight loss. Nothing could be further from the truth. Though it seems like eating fat would lead to more around your midsection, the truth is that cutting fat from your diet is likely to be harmful to your weight loss attempts, and will leave you hungry and crabby besides.

Exercising Off Excess : No matter how many hours you spend walking on the treadmill, you can’t exercise enough to make up for an unhealthy diet. In fact, research has shown that exercise produces little benefit for weight loss if you don’t pair it with healthy meals, and that the kind of food you eat is actually three times more important for weight loss than physical activity.

Calories In, Calories Out : It’s tempting to think that all calories are created equal, but in truth, your body is more affected by the source of calories than the number. Rather than counting every calorie you consume, your time is better spent making meals with healthy, whole ingredients instead. Being a vegetarian won't help you get leaner and enjoy better health unless you actually eat clean.

 

 

Weight Loss Benefits of Going Vegetarian

Whether or not you slim down depends on how many calories you consume, not necessarily on the source of the calories. If you eat more calories than you need you will gain weight, whether you eat meat or not. Weight loss is possible on a meat-based diet and on a vegetarian diet. So you should evaluate the pros and cons of going meat-free before you make the change.

A potential benefit of going vegetarian to lose weight is that you may consume fewer calories. Research has shown people following a typical vegetarian diet consume, on average, around 500 fewer calories daily than their meat-eating counterparts. Interestingly, the research showed that they actually ate more food than non-vegetarians, another great benefit.

A healthy vegetarian diet is often comprised mainly of complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates are starchy, fiber-rich foods that are naturally low in fat and calories. Examples of complex carbs are legumes and other vegetables and whole grains. Remember, every 3,500 calories cut equals one pound lost. If you do the math, it's easy to see that a 500 calorie daily deficit will lead to one pound of weight loss per week. Whether you're a veggie or a carnivore, this deficit can create real results.

Plant-based foods are full of nutrients and used as efficient fuel by your body. Because they rarely make it into long term fat storage like starchy grains and sugars, plant-based foods will keep you full without piling on the pounds. The health benefits of adopting a vegetarian lifestyle go beyond weight loss. Vegetarians tend to have lower cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure, fewer cases of diabetes, dementia and rheumatoid arthritis, to name a few.

 

The Proven Success of Going Vegetarian

Ample evidence abounds about the benefits of adopting a plant-based diet for weight loss. One of a sports nutrition company, recently published a study on weight loss that revealed that vegetarians lost weight close to twice as fast as their meat-eating subjects, losing four pounds a month instead of two.

Most experts and health organizations agree that eating more plants is a good thing, no matter how strict a vegetarian diet you follow. Interestingly, vegetarians are inclined to live healthy lifestyles even outside of meal time. In general, they exercise more frequently and tend to live longer than non vegetarians. In fact, 90% of the study’s participants found it easier to start losing weight once they gave up meat.

The key to weight loss success with going meatless is that it quickly becomes a less like a diet, and more of a lifestyle. To make a real change for your health, you need to get rid of the idea of short term “dieting” in favor of long-term lifestyle changes that will last long after you’re happy with the numbers on the scale.

 

What Needs to Happen to Make Vegetarianism Effective

Naturally, losing weight while vegetarian isn’t as simple as taking meat off your menu. Plenty of vegetarians is obese today because they snack on the empty calories in sodas and potato chips rather than filling their diet with healthy foods.

However, filling up on plant-based foods isn't enough to lose weight. You also need to clean up your diet and ditch the junk. Not all vegetarian foods are healthy or nutritious. Filling up on processed carbs will keep your belly fat right in place, so in order to experience long lasting change, you will need to eat adequate amounts of beans, fresh fruits and vegetables, soy protein and even eggs and milk. It’s also important to ensure you stay well nourished by monitoring the levels of nutrients your foods provide for you.

It’s all too easy to cause your body to suffer without following a smart vegetarian plan, so make sure to eat your fill of these three nutrients to prevent problems from developing.

Protein : While meat is the most celebrated form of protein, plenty of plants are filled with it too. This nutrient helps build and preserve lean mass while suppressing appetite. Most experts recommend eating about 10% of your calories as protein, so fill up on beans, lentils, tofu and veggie burgers to ensure you get your fill. Beans and nuts, on the other hand, lack one or more essential amino acids, so they're considered incomplete proteins. However, this doesn't mean they're less healthy. Vegetarians can get their protein from eggs, dairy, legumes, nuts, seeds and vegetables. Not all sources of protein are created equal, though. Buckwheat, quinoa, soy and chia seeds, for example, are complete protein sources because they offer all nine essential amino acids, such as leucine, valine, histidine and lysine.

Calcium : There is no reason to despair if you have given up dairy products. Plant based sources of calcium include plant based fortified milk, tofu, kale, collards, beans, broccoli, orange juice and soy milk. Consider taking a calcium supplement, if you are not able to meet these daily servings. Take a supplement at levels that fills your daily gaps.

Vitamin B12 : Vitamin B-12 plays an essential role in a person's health. A lack of vitamin B-12 in a person's diet can adversely affect their physical and mental health. Because this crucial vitamin is only found in animal products, consider taking a daily supplement if you aren’t willing to down an occasional glass of milk.

Fortified cereals, plant based milk are a good choice as they have high bio availability. This means that the vitamin B-12 does not have to break down before the body absorbs it.

 

In Summary

A poorly planned vegetarian diet can lead to nutrient deficiencies. Variety is the key. Make sure your meals include a wide range of fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains and other whole foods.

Most conventional diets will fail you in the long term, but a lifestyle change to a vegetarian diet is a great way to get rid of weight that just won’t budge. So long as you eat a healthy, well-balanced vegetarian diet filled with plenty of plants, you’ll be amazed how quickly your unwanted belly fat melts right off. Vegetarian diets and Mediterranean diets are equally effective at reducing the risk of heart disease. These eating patterns have been linked to lower rates of stroke, obesity and cardiac events.

Going vegetarian might be tricky at first, but the benefits to your body make it well worth it in the long run. Vegetarian diets may be more effective at lowering bad cholesterol. The Mediterranean diet, on the other hand, may lead to a greater reduction in triglyceride levels. Researchers attribute these benefits to the high intake of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes and other whole foods. Both diets limit saturated fat, which can further lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Yes, the vegetarian diet is the ultimate fat loss diet because it’s based on eating organic*, whole foods that tend to be light on calories and loaded with nutrients.

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