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Vegan weight loss macros?

SammyBoo1980SammyBoo1980 Member Posts: 52 Member Member Posts: 52 Member
I'm a newly turned vegan trying to lose weight. My macros are set at 45 carbs, 35 protein, and 20 fat. Every day I go way over on carbs and way under on protein (about 18g). I also heard fibre is important for weight loss so I'm wondering what the best foods are (high protein, high fibre, low fat), and if my macros are set wrong? I eat whole grains, beans, soy, tofu, quinoa, loads of veg every day. I supplement with EngevitA nutritional yeast flakes with b12, hemp seeds, chia seeds, and I use maca powder. I know all the veg is obviously carb, but my fat is still pretty high. I didn't really want to supplement protein as I'm useless at getting up in the morning and this is really the only time I'd get chance to do this I.e with a shake with pea protein etc.

Any ideas on my macro levels and food/ protein supplement suggestions? My diary is (should be) open to view.

Although I'm only currently walking for exercise I do plan to start adding weight training and running. I only ever seem to maintain weight as one day I'll be at or under my calories then the next I'll be way over, so weekly my levels always end up about the same grr, I find the more I exercise the more I eat. So much for vegan food helping you to lose weight haha!
edited January 2015
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Replies

  • tiddles_yeahtiddles_yeah Member Posts: 117 Member Member Posts: 117 Member
    There is no reason why macros would be different for a vegan than a non vegan. I say this as someone who has been vegan since they are little and training for a little over a year

    High fiber foods = leafy green vegetables
    Protein = i eat tofu and pea protein shakes (supplemented with leucine). But there are a tonne of places to get protein. like beans and the like, i just cant eat them due to allergies/intollerances

    But all in all, no theres no reason your macros should be different to anyone else
  • rand486rand486 Member Posts: 270 Member Member Posts: 270 Member
    I'm a newly turned vegan trying to lose weight. My macros are set at 45 carbs, 35 protein, and 20 fat. Every day I go way over on carbs and way under on protein (about 18g). I also heard fibre is important for weight loss so I'm wondering what the best foods are (high protein, high fibre, low fat), and if my macros are set wrong? I eat whole grains, beans, soy, tofu, quinoa, loads of veg every day. I supplement with EngevitA nutritional yeast flakes with b12, hemp seeds, chia seeds, and I use maca powder. I know all the veg is obviously carb, but my fat is still pretty high. I didn't really want to supplement protein as I'm useless at getting up in the morning and this is really the only time I'd get chance to do this I.e with a shake with pea protein etc.

    Any ideas on my macro levels and food/ protein supplement suggestions? My diary is (should be) open to view.

    Your macros sound quite low to me, but I'm male, so I'm likely just not used to that.

    Macro distribution is optimal at 40/30/30 for athletes, but if your goal is weight loss in general, you don't really care.

    Fiber is good for satiety, but doesn't make a major difference in terms of weight loss.

    Your food list is great! Note: Beans & Lentils make a complete protein - many vegan sources of protein are incomplete amino acids, but as long as you vary it up, you'll be fine. However, you're right - this list is going to be very carb heavy.

    A morning shake of just protein powder and water takes all of 30 seconds, and would be a great source - what's the problem there? I used to do that all the time, and I hate mornings.

    As far as vegan diets go, I don't feel you should follow anyone's advice on here (myself included). It's quite difficult to do sustainably, and is best left to reliable resources such as a doctor/nutritionist or a book with scientific sources (ie: Don't take advice based on food ethics/speculation). Eating according to ideology is great, but your body has certain requirements, and you need to fulfill them. A nutritionist can help you figure that out in a way that fits your food philosophy.
  • AliceDarkAliceDark Member, Premium Posts: 3,888 Member Member, Premium Posts: 3,888 Member
    Well, based on the goals that your diary is showing today, that's not how you have your macros set up. Of 1200 total calories, your goals say:

    90g carbs (1g of carbs has 4 calories, so you have 360 calories coming from carbs, or 30%)
    40g fat (1g of fat has 9 calories, so you have 360 calories coming from fat, or 30%)
    120g of protein (1g of protein has 4 calories, so you have 480 calories coming from protein, or 40%)

    Your protein goal is really high and your carb goal is kind of low. I would suggest setting a more reasonable protein goal, then working to meet that with vegan sources (vegan protein powder, tofu, seitan, etc.)
  • melimomTARDISmelimomTARDIS Member Posts: 1,953 Member Member Posts: 1,953 Member
    I am a vegetarian, and my macros are set up with high carbs. But its the calories ultimately.
  • rand486rand486 Member Posts: 270 Member Member Posts: 270 Member
    AliceDark wrote: »
    90g carbs (1g of carbs has 4 calories, so you have 360 calories coming from carbs, or 30%)
    40g fat (1g of fat has 9 calories, so you have 360 calories coming from fat, or 30%)
    120g of protein (1g of protein has 4 calories, so you have 480 calories coming from protein, or 40%)

    Your protein goal is really high and your carb goal is kind of low. I would suggest setting a more reasonable protein goal, then working to meet that with vegan sources (vegan protein powder, tofu, seitan, etc.)

    If her goal is to lose weight, and "tone up", her macros are perfect!

    I agree that a higher carb/lower protein answer is more realistic, given a vegan diet, but that doesn't mean her macro targets are incorrect.
  • FizikallyFit1FizikallyFit1 Member Posts: 32 Member Member Posts: 32 Member
    Relatively new to Vegan Lifestyle. Marking this to come back and read.
  • aldousmomaldousmom Member Posts: 414 Member Member Posts: 414 Member
    Have you read McDougall's info on his website? I really love the Starch Solution (one of his books), it's a pretty good read if you haven't read it already.
  • AliceDarkAliceDark Member, Premium Posts: 3,888 Member Member, Premium Posts: 3,888 Member
    rand486 wrote: »
    AliceDark wrote: »
    90g carbs (1g of carbs has 4 calories, so you have 360 calories coming from carbs, or 30%)
    40g fat (1g of fat has 9 calories, so you have 360 calories coming from fat, or 30%)
    120g of protein (1g of protein has 4 calories, so you have 480 calories coming from protein, or 40%)

    Your protein goal is really high and your carb goal is kind of low. I would suggest setting a more reasonable protein goal, then working to meet that with vegan sources (vegan protein powder, tofu, seitan, etc.)

    If her goal is to lose weight, and "tone up", her macros are perfect!

    I agree that a higher carb/lower protein answer is more realistic, given a vegan diet, but that doesn't mean her macro targets are incorrect.
    I didn't say that they were incorrect for her, I said that she didn't have them set in the way she thought she did. Depending on her stats, she probably doesn't need to be trying to hit 120g of protein.

  • rand486rand486 Member Posts: 270 Member Member Posts: 270 Member
    AliceDark wrote: »
    I didn't say that they were incorrect for her, I said that she didn't have them set in the way she thought she did. Depending on her stats, she probably doesn't need to be trying to hit 120g of protein.

    Totally fair! Thanks for clearing that up! :)
  • SammyBoo1980SammyBoo1980 Member Posts: 52 Member Member Posts: 52 Member
    I changed them just now, sorry for the confusion :-p

    I have heard someone else mention that book aldousmom so will definitely check it out.

    Thanks for the tips on my macros. I will add a pea protein shake and see if that helps things.

    I guess what I find hardest is organising my meals so I'm within my targets for eg I had beans on toast this morning then bean burritos for dinner, both quite high in calories. If I'd had lunch I'd have been way over my 1300 goal. Ok the choc probably didn't help but still! How does everyone else get around this? Do you plan out your meals based on calories, or do you just roughly know how many calories some meals are etc?
  • AliceDarkAliceDark Member, Premium Posts: 3,888 Member Member, Premium Posts: 3,888 Member
    I'm vegetarian and average 120g protein (still hard for me, but not as difficult as it would be if I were vegan). I sit down for maybe 5 minutes each morning with my coffee and pre-log most of my day. I plan my meals around protein sources, then fit in carbs and fat with whatever calories are left over. Finding a good vegan protein powder would probably really help -- they tend to help you get a lot of protein for a relatively small number of calories.
  • aldousmomaldousmom Member Posts: 414 Member Member Posts: 414 Member
    maybe cut out the processed grains? (toast, tortillas, etc). Nothing's wrong w/ grains it's just that they have so many calories, especially wheat, and there's not much in it that you can't get from some other less calorie dense food. like put all of your burrito ingredients on some romaine, spinach or arugula.

    Another thing I do to get plenty of veggies/greens is to make a big pot of veg soup weekly, it's so good and won't push you out of your calorie goal. I use the Weight Watcher's Fresh Vegetable Soup recipe (I'm not into WW at all, it's just a good recipe). I keep it in the fridge and heat as I go. I'll add beans to it as I reheat if I need a heartier meal, or leave it as-is for a lighter snack.

    I hope that helps! I've found my diet is always a work in progress, tweaking here and there, so don't stress about getting everything right all at once. I've been at my goal weight for ages, but I'm an ultra-marathoner and I like to keep a close eye on my nutrition.
  • SammyBoo1980SammyBoo1980 Member Posts: 52 Member Member Posts: 52 Member
    Thank you very much ladies. You're right about the processed grains. I'm going to tweak things over the next week and add in soups, protein shake, and *try* less processed and chocolate! I'll have a look at your diary aldousmom if you don't mind as one day once I've built up my fitness with walking then jogging I want to do some serious running!
  • rand486rand486 Member Posts: 270 Member Member Posts: 270 Member
    Do you plan out your meals based on calories, or do you just roughly know how many calories some meals are etc?

    I don't have to do this anymore, thanks to a few years of experience, but the best thing to do is pre-plan your day.

    Make the food ahead of time, the night before (or on Sunday in a giant cook-off as I do), and have everything punched into MFP before you eat it.

    By pre-planning the day, you would've known whether you had room for that chocolate or not ;)
  • KaleYogaGinKaleYogaGin Member Posts: 28 Member Member Posts: 28 Member
    Hey OP, I'm relatively new to veganism myself and the person who most helped me to find my feet diet-wise and also lifestyle-wise is the speaker / author Colleen Patrick Goudreau ...if you haven't heard of her before now, I would highly recommend that you check out her podcast, Vegetation Food for Thought. It's a fantastic resource. She is truly a wonderful and warm person. Good luck with your journey! :)
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Member Posts: 23,117 Member Member Posts: 23,117 Member
    Throughout my weight loss, my macros were 60% carbohydrate, 20-25% fat, and 15-20% protein. This worked well for me, possibly because I do a fair amount of running. I got most of my carbohydrate from vegetables -- I ate grains more rarely, mostly because they were calorie dense and I wanted to use my calories for other things (now that I am maintaining, I eat a lot more grains).

    I would prelog each day the night before so I could have the chance to adjust if I was too low in protein or too high in calories.

    Have you tried seitan? It's very high protein and the calorie count is pretty moderate. If you make your own, you can control it even more.
  • ook_gaook_ga Member Posts: 28 Member Member Posts: 28 Member
    When it comes to weight loss, it's calories in vs calories out. It doesn't matter what you're eating. Burn more than you consume and you'll lose weight. However, when it comes to cutting body fat, monitoring macros comes into play. I found this macro calculator spreadsheet on a bodybuilding forum and it helped me develop a decent vegan meal plan. Obviously it's geared towards meatheads who have a much easier time loading up on protein while avoiding carbs, but I made it work.

    Peanut butter (or nut butter of any kind) is the great vegan macro corrector if you're trying to cut body fat. Flaxseed meal, peanut butter and a little bit of molasses mixed with hot water is a well-macroed alternative to oatmeal. I'd eat that in the morning, a shake in the afternoon (unsweeteened soy milk, half a block of tofu, soy protein powder, cocoa powder, flaxmeal, peanut butter - tastes like a butterfinger bar!) and a huge salad and lentils for dinner. Some people are soy-averse based either on things they've heard or a legit allergy, so obviously that wouldn't work for everybody.

    The cool thing about the plan as referenced in the link is that you get a 36-hour window each week to go nuts and eat whatever you want. The idea behind that being to keep your metabolism on it's toes. YMMV, but it worked wonders for me.

    I'd like to go back to that at some point, but right now I'm cruising along at 50/35/15

    Also, I've heard eating fat before a workout and carbs after (when metabolism is humming) is key when attempting to reduce body fat percentage.
    edited November 2015
  • kmmusterkmmuster Member Posts: 1 Member Member Posts: 1 Member
    I set my macros at 60% carbs, 15% protein, and 25% fat. But I also make sure that I am eating over 60 grams of protein a day.
  • DaddieCatDaddieCat Member Posts: 3,674 Member Member Posts: 3,674 Member
    rand486 wrote: »
    I'm a newly turned vegan trying to lose weight. My macros are set at 45 carbs, 35 protein, and 20 fat. Every day I go way over on carbs and way under on protein (about 18g). I also heard fibre is important for weight loss so I'm wondering what the best foods are (high protein, high fibre, low fat), and if my macros are set wrong? I eat whole grains, beans, soy, tofu, quinoa, loads of veg every day. I supplement with EngevitA nutritional yeast flakes with b12, hemp seeds, chia seeds, and I use maca powder. I know all the veg is obviously carb, but my fat is still pretty high. I didn't really want to supplement protein as I'm useless at getting up in the morning and this is really the only time I'd get chance to do this I.e with a shake with pea protein etc.

    Any ideas on my macro levels and food/ protein supplement suggestions? My diary is (should be) open to view.

    Your macros sound quite low to me, but I'm male, so I'm likely just not used to that.

    Macro distribution is optimal at 40/30/30 for athletes, but if your goal is weight loss in general, you don't really care.

    Fiber is good for satiety, but doesn't make a major difference in terms of weight loss.

    Your food list is great! Note: Beans & Lentils make a complete protein - many vegan sources of protein are incomplete amino acids, but as long as you vary it up, you'll be fine. However, you're right - this list is going to be very carb heavy.

    A morning shake of just protein powder and water takes all of 30 seconds, and would be a great source - what's the problem there? I used to do that all the time, and I hate mornings.

    As far as vegan diets go, I don't feel you should follow anyone's advice on here (myself included). It's quite difficult to do sustainably, and is best left to reliable resources such as a doctor/nutritionist or a book with scientific sources (ie: Don't take advice based on food ethics/speculation). Eating according to ideology is great, but your body has certain requirements, and you need to fulfill them. A nutritionist can help you figure that out in a way that fits your food philosophy.

    I just wanted to point out that the incomplete protein myth is just that... a myth. It's been debunked by science over and over again.
  • DaddieCatDaddieCat Member Posts: 3,674 Member Member Posts: 3,674 Member
    Throughout my weight loss, my macros were 60% carbohydrate, 20-25% fat, and 15-20% protein. This worked well for me, possibly because I do a fair amount of running. I got most of my carbohydrate from vegetables -- I ate grains more rarely, mostly because they were calorie dense and I wanted to use my calories for other things (now that I am maintaining, I eat a lot more grains).

    I would prelog each day the night before so I could have the chance to adjust if I was too low in protein or too high in calories.

    Have you tried seitan? It's very high protein and the calorie count is pretty moderate. If you make your own, you can control it even more.

    This... I'm well over 200 grams of protein in a day and seitan is my go to outside of powder. It's convenient, reasonably low calorie and reasonably low carb so I still get all my veggies or grains or whatever.
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