Vegan diet for weight loss? Is it possible?

Are you one of those who has tried to lose weight multiple times but have not been successful to date? If yes, you have come to the right place where you can find some effective tips to lose weight successfully, the vegan way. Yes, you heard it right, the vegan way!

Vegan diet for weight loss

There are so many programs available online to lose weight like the Keto diet, the GM diet, the Atkins diets, and the vegan diet for weight loss. Some people are able to shed their weight easily while others manage to do it initially only to regain them back at a later point in time.

Weight is just a number. It guides us whether we are at an ideal weight, underweight, overweight, or obese. It also helps us to take charge of our health if we are overweight or obese as it can lead to health complications.

Weight loss is a gradual process and it takes time to shed those extra kilos.  The changes that we choose to adopt has to become a lifestyle change. It has to be done in an effective manner which is sustainable over the long term. Hence it is very important to wisely choose a diet that can be followed over the long term to achieve your goal.

Is weight loss possible on a vegan diet?

If you are looking to shed some pounds, you should definitely try a vegan diet!

Vegans don’t eat meat, fish, eggs, or dairy products. Instead, they eat plant-based products like fruits, vegetables, legumes, lentils, beans, plant-based milk and cheese, and other meat alternatives.

Is weight loss possible on a vegan diet?

Many people have gone vegan for ethical reasons for stopping cruelty to animals. But recent studies have found that a vegan diet has immense health benefits and can also help you lose a significant amount of weight.

How exactly are you going to achieve this? Going vegan may help in reducing the number of high-calorie foods you consume. Also, with a vegan diet, you can replace the high-calorie foods with high fiber alternatives that are low in calories and keeps you full for a long period of time.

Is this approach healthy?

Many diets advise you to cut out on a particular food group which may not be healthy. And this may have adverse effects on your health if you don’t pay proper attention to your nutrition requirements. Hence a vegan diet is highly advisable as it allows you to include all kinds of food groups which are healthy.

Some may argue that a vegan diet too may not help as it does not provide enough proteins and other nutrients like Vitamin D and Vitamin B12. Sunlight is the source of Vitamin D and Vitamin B12 is found only in animal products. If you become deficient in these vitamins it may lead to anemia. Hence vegans too need to supplement their diet with vitamins D and vitamin B12 to avoid any deficiencies.

How long does it take to lose weight on a vegan diet?

After turning vegans, some may easily lose weight while others may not. Why?

People can easily lose weight on a vegan diet if they consume a whole food organic plant-based diet as they are high in nutrients. On a vegan diet, people are allowed to eat fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, lentils, nuts, and seeds. They should avoid or limit the intake of processed foods as they just add to your calories with no nutrition. Hence you should avoid foods rich in sugar, fat, starch, sodium, and additives.

Weight loss tips

Weight loss tips

Women generally need to eat 2000 calories a day to maintain their weight and 1500 calories to lose weight. And men need to eat 2500 calories a day to maintain their weight and 2000 calories to lose weight.

Also eating unhealthy stuff doesn’t equate to eating a whole food meal as it does not provide any nutrition. So, to lose weight, you increase the intake of fresh fruits and vegetables than increase the intake of vegan cookies.

Factors affecting weight loss

Factors affecting weight loss

There are many factors that affect weight loss including

  • Age
  • Height
  • Current weight
  • Diet
  • Exercise
  • Relationships
  • Environment
  • Emotions
  • Metabolic health
  • Medical issues, if any

Although you can’t control all the above factors, you can definitely control your diet and exercise. As with any diet, the key to successful weight loss as a vegan is to consume fewer calories than are burned through exercise and daily activities.

A person can try the following tips to get the maximum results in his weight loss efforts.

  1. Be mindful while using oils and seasonings – A low-calorie vegetable can become high in fat when oil is used generously while cooking. It is always better to cook food without adding oil to them. Rather use whole ingredients like cashews, almonds, etc instead of oil as they too contain oil in them.
  • Rely less on processed foods – Processed snacks readily available in the market are high on calories as they contain a high amount of salt, sugar, and preservative. While trying to lose weight, it is best to avoid processed foods and rely on whole foods like fresh fruits, smoothies, and homemade snacks.
  • Eating healthy fat foods like avocados – Although avocados are high in fat and calories than other fruits, vegans can eat them as it helps in staying full for a long time and it helps in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Increase physical activity – You can see better weight loss results if along with a good diet, you can include some amount of physical activity
  • Eat small portions through the day – Eating 2 or 3 big portions of meals can cause overeating as the increased time gap between the meals may lead to cravings. Hence, it’s better to consume 5 or 6 meals in smaller portions as it will keep you full and promote metabolism.
  • Shop for organic products – The reason why organic products help in weight loss is that they grow in nutrient-dense oil and they don’t contain any pesticides. They are rich in all nutrients and the flavor and taste of these products make you quite satisfied without overeating.
  • Don’t binge eat on vegan deserts – Eat desserts in moderation. Sugar can disrupt your metabolism and can lead to health issues like weight gain including high blood pressure, inflammation, and elevated triglycerides. How much of sweets can one eat? Women should try and limit their daily sugar intake to around 6 teaspoons or 100 calories whereas men can consume around 9 teaspoons or 150 calories a day.  

Here’s a sample one-week meal plan than can be repeated for a month for fast weight loss.

sample one-week meal plan

Monday

  • Breakfast: You can have green smoothies or shakes.
  • Lunch: whole-grain pasta with lentil “meatballs” and a side salad
  • Dinner: cauliflower and chickpea tacos with guacamole.
  • Snacks: air-popped popcorn, kale chips, and trail mix

Tuesday

  • Breakfast: Red rice idli with coconut chutney, tomato chutney.
  • Lunch: Mixed vegetable salad, one cup of brown rice with daal and mixed vegetable.
  • Dinner: Salads and soup
  • Snacks: roasted bajra or jowar flakes

Wednesday

  • Breakfast: sweet potato toast topped with peanut butter and banana
  • Lunch: salad with quinoa, avocados, tomatoes, onions, beans, and cilantro. Whole wheat Vegetable stuff paratha without oil. The stuffing can be made from potatoes, mixed vegetable of beetroot and carrot, onions etc
  • Dinner: oat risotto with Swiss chard, mushrooms.
  • Snacks: mixed berries, vegan protein shake, and walnuts

Thursday

  • Breakfast: Date, Nut and seed shake
  • Lunch: chickpea and spinach curry with brown rice
  • Dinner: Mediterranean lentil salad with cucumbers, olives, peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, kale, and parsley
  • Snacks: Fresh fruits and energy balls made from oats, chia seeds, nut butter, and dried fruit

Friday

  • Breakfast: Red rice poha with vegetables.
  • Lunch: Veggie burger with steamed broccoli and sweet potato wedges
  • Dinner: mac and “cheese” with nutritional yeast and collard greens
  • Snacks: pistachios, homemade granola, and coconut chia pudding

Saturday

  • Breakfast: chickpea pancake
  • Lunch: garlic-ginger tofu with stir-fried veggies and quinoa
  • Dinner: bean salad with black-eyed peas, tomatoes, corn, bell peppers, and onions
  • Snacks: whole wheat banana bread.

Sunday

  • Breakfast: whole-grain toast with avocado and nutritional yeast alongside a vegan protein shake
  • Lunch: lentil chili with grilled asparagus and baked potato
  • Dinner: vegetable paella with brown rice, onions, tomatoes, bell peppers, artichoke, and chickpeas
  • Snacks: almonds, fruit salad, and carrots with hummus

Vegan weight loss success stories

There are plenty of reasons why veganism is becoming increasingly popular. Apart from stopping cruelty to animals and saving the environment, a vegan diet provides immense health benefits. It has helped many people lose weight. We can find an increasing number of celebrities to turn vegan.

Losing weight is never an easy task. People have documented their progress by writing their success stories in a journal. Apart from this they have also captured their weight loss pictures before and after their transition and shared it on social media. This keeps them motivated and inspires others to follow their path. You can also read plenty of vegan weight loss books which will provide you detailed step by step information on how to lose weight eating delicious, nutritious food without guilt.

Did you find the above article informative? If you liked it, do share it with your friends and family. Also, don’t forget to leave your comments below on how you wish to shed those extra pounds.

Leave a Comment