HOW TO BE A LEAN VEGAN!
Lots of people decide to try a vegan diet to lose weight, and initially that weight loss happens easily because they have no idea what to eat! So they end up accidentally cutting their calories, eating less and therefore naturally lose some kilograms! But it doesn’t take long until they discover there is a wide variety of tasty but naughty, BAD vegan foods to choose, and all of a sudden it’s very easy to devour bags of vegetable crisps floating under their vegan-halo! Or, in my case, 2 weeks into being a vegan i discovered that Oreo’s are vegan… oh why oh why could I not have been the vegan chick who snacks on raw carrots all days whilst wearing my ‘i ❤️ being vegan’ t-shirt?!
So, unless you are that girl who is happy to stick to carrots as your afternoon treat, then the reality is that being a vegan can actually often place you heavier on the scales than you were before. Also there are unfortunately still poor and fewer choices for vegans when out and about in London; there are some great vegan restaurants, and I used to have some great fun exploring them (and the raw scene too), but all too often i would leave with a noticeably bloated belly thanks to too many lentils and oils for my digestive system! The reliance of nut butters and oils in these restaurants leads to consuming a high volume of calories (often without you even realising), and so because you feel great for eating a raw salad (that actually contains 700-800 calories), you feel like your saintly salad totally deserves a slice of cheeky raw cheese cake, and oops – you’ve just added another 500-600 calories to your ‘healthy vegan’ dinner… and sorry to point this out, but you know that healthy smoothie you had before dinner to refrain from snacking on something bad, well that was another 400-600 calories too. As you can see, having a truly healthy vegan meal is actually more challenging than you’d expect, and when you times that meal by at least 3 a day – you’re very likely to be consuming more fat and calories than you thought veganly-possible!
Here’s some good news: at Protein Haus we focus on keeping it light and lean for vegans too. We have lots of low calorie protein shakes and our vegan salads range from 300-500 cals, plus we have detox wholemeal vegan wraps and plenty of lighter snacks too. If you like your nut butter, try our ‘No grain brekkie’, it has chopped apples topped with just the right amount of nut butter, goji berries, coconut & cacao nibs to make it feel indulgent, for half the calories of the raw cheesecake.
Personally, i dip in and out of being vegan, i like the idea of it, but if I’m honest with myself my body doesn’t seem to respond particularly well to it, but you may be different! And of course some of it does come down to taste preferences too – i ate tofu and broccoli for 6 meals per day, and admittedly i did get a little leaner, but all that tofu…. ek, not for me!!
So, my best tips on how you can be lean and be vegan? Experiment with any of our amazingly varied and tasty protein shakes – just ask for them to be made with vegan protein and almond milk or coconut water. I would suggest having 3 meals and 2 shakes a day and spreading them out like this:
1. Do your cardio first thing, then have a protein shake.
2. For lunch have a large vegan salad that contains some protein like seeds or tofu, brown rice and greens.
3. Mid-afternoon have a protein bar (lots of vegan options available now) to maintain energy levels.
4. Do a weights workout in the afternoon focusing on large muscle groups, like squats, clean and press, shoulder press, lunges and deadlifts. Post workout have your second vegan protein shake with added berries and greens
5. Dinner – have another large salad but with less carbs and instead focus on packing it out with lots of greens, veggies, nuts/seeds.
Give it a go, see how you feel and let me know! All my vegans, you are very welcome!