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Veganism for weight loss

jungaarjungaar Posts: 5Member Member Posts: 5Member Member
Is there such a thing? If you want to lose weight, but keep your muscle mass, would a vegan diet help in any way?
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  • psuLemonpsuLemon Posts: 35,110Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium MFP Moderator Posts: 35,110Member, MFP Moderator, Greeter, Premium MFP Moderator
    jungaar wrote: »
    Is there such a thing? If you want to lose weight, but keep your muscle mass, would a vegan diet help in any way?

    There are plenty of vegans who get adequate protein. But I suspect you might be looking at raw vegan who do 80/10/10.
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Posts: 20,809Member Member Posts: 20,809Member Member
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.
  • zcb94zcb94 Posts: 4,191Member Member Posts: 4,191Member Member
    I believe there is such a thing, if I remember correctly. I'm not sure if the vegan lifestyle would help or hurt weight loss/ muscles in any way, but I do know that one would have to search extra-hard for palatable protein sources other than meat.
  • buzz28camarobuzz28camaro Posts: 52Member Member Posts: 52Member Member
    Absolutely. Check out Brian Turner's channel (HumerusFitness) and Jon Venus's channel on YouTube. Both vegan weightlifters/body builders. Vegan foods are typically less calorie-dense than foods containing animals products, so many people find losing weight easier on a vegan diet. Eating less calorie-dense foods means you can eat a higher volume of food for the same or less amount of calories. And by 'vegan' foods I mean things like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, etc., not oreo's, dark chocolate, and potato chips.
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Posts: 20,809Member Member Posts: 20,809Member Member
    zcb94 wrote: »
    I believe there is such a thing, if I remember correctly. I'm not sure if the vegan lifestyle would help or hurt weight loss/ muscles in any way, but I do know that one would have to search extra-hard for palatable protein sources other than meat.

    It wouldn't require a hard search -- vegans can get protein from beans, grains, tofu, tempeh, seitan, and protein powders. I can even get tofu, pre-cooked lentils, tempeh, and vegan protein powders at my local (non-health food) grocery store now. Once these foods are in the diet, protein needs can be rounded out with nuts/nut butters and the protein that is vegetables.
  • ndj1979ndj1979 Posts: 29,021Member Member Posts: 29,021Member Member
    jungaar wrote: »
    Is there such a thing? If you want to lose weight, but keep your muscle mass, would a vegan diet help in any way?

    OR, you can just keep protein high, and follow a structured lifting program to make sure that you get adequate training stimulus, and eat in a moderate deficit of about 250 calories....

  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Posts: 20,809Member Member Posts: 20,809Member Member
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    jungaar wrote: »
    Is there such a thing? If you want to lose weight, but keep your muscle mass, would a vegan diet help in any way?

    OR, you can just keep protein high, and follow a structured lifting program to make sure that you get adequate training stimulus, and eat in a moderate deficit of about 250 calories....

    This (done either as a vegan or a non-vegan) is what is going to help with the muscle mass. Veganism is pretty much an irrelevant factor for weight loss/muscle retention as far as I'm concerned.

    Vegans can be fat, scrawny, or at a healthy weight.
  • lemurcat12lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886Member Member Posts: 30,886Member Member
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.

    Yeah, this.

    A friend of mine is losing weight after changing from vegetarianism to veganism (for ethical reasons), She acknowledges it's because the foods she tended to overeat on the most were cheese and sweets with butter, cream, or egg, and that although one can find replacements as a vegan it takes more work (or so far she is happy not doing so). But I'm sure you can get around that.
  • lemurcat12lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886Member Member Posts: 30,886Member Member
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.

    Yeah, this.

    A friend of mine is losing weight after changing from vegetarianism to veganism (for ethical reasons), She acknowledges it's because the foods she tended to overeat on the most were cheese and sweets with butter, cream, or egg, and that although one can find replacements as a vegan it takes more work (or so far she is happy not doing so). But I'm sure you can get around that.
  • ndj1979ndj1979 Posts: 29,021Member Member Posts: 29,021Member Member
    ndj1979 wrote: »
    jungaar wrote: »
    Is there such a thing? If you want to lose weight, but keep your muscle mass, would a vegan diet help in any way?

    OR, you can just keep protein high, and follow a structured lifting program to make sure that you get adequate training stimulus, and eat in a moderate deficit of about 250 calories....

    This (done either as a vegan or a non-vegan) is what is going to help with the muscle mass. Veganism is pretty much an irrelevant factor for weight loss/muscle retention as far as I'm concerned.

    Vegans can be fat, scrawny, or at a healthy weight.

    agree
  • Sued0nimSued0nim Posts: 17,504Member Member Posts: 17,504Member Member
    jungaar wrote: »
    Is there such a thing? If you want to lose weight, but keep your muscle mass, would a vegan diet help in any way?

    I find this confusing

    Are you asking if veganism is a weight loss plan? No it's not. It's an ethical life choice..

    Can you maintain muscle and hit a defecit whilst following a vegan way of eating? You can preserve as much as possible with a shed load of commitment and focus, hitting adequate protein minimums and following a decent progressive resistance programme

    Are you at a point where you want to take a decision to become vegan or is this just a pontification thread?
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Posts: 20,809Member Member Posts: 20,809Member Member
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.

    Yeah, this.

    A friend of mine is losing weight after changing from vegetarianism to veganism (for ethical reasons), She acknowledges it's because the foods she tended to overeat on the most were cheese and sweets with butter, cream, or egg, and that although one can find replacements as a vegan it takes more work (or so far she is happy not doing so). But I'm sure you can get around that.

    Vegan desserts are getting better all the time. Coconut whipped cream, cashew milk ice cream, it's like living in a golden age.

    Many people do see a dip in their weight after going vegan because it does remove some of the easier options for foods we may struggle to control. And I will admit it does remove a lot of incidental eating (like when people bring cookies or cake to work, they usually aren't vegan, so I skip them).

    But it's also fairly easy to either find vegan recipes for the foods you love (Pinterest is a gold mine) or to buy them at any halfway decent "health food" store. Unless one takes the route your friend takes, it would be easy to maintain or gain weight as a vegan.
  • lemurcat12lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886Member Member Posts: 30,886Member Member
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.

    Yeah, this.

    A friend of mine is losing weight after changing from vegetarianism to veganism (for ethical reasons), She acknowledges it's because the foods she tended to overeat on the most were cheese and sweets with butter, cream, or egg, and that although one can find replacements as a vegan it takes more work (or so far she is happy not doing so). But I'm sure you can get around that.

    Vegan desserts are getting better all the time. Coconut whipped cream, cashew milk ice cream, it's like living in a golden age.

    Many people do see a dip in their weight after going vegan because it does remove some of the easier options for foods we may struggle to control. And I will admit it does remove a lot of incidental eating (like when people bring cookies or cake to work, they usually aren't vegan, so I skip them).

    But it's also fairly easy to either find vegan recipes for the foods you love (Pinterest is a gold mine) or to buy them at any halfway decent "health food" store. Unless one takes the route your friend takes, it would be easy to maintain or gain weight as a vegan.

    I think part of this is that she mostly ate high cal desserts at mainstream restaurants. Increasingly local restaurants will have vegan options, but not necessarily have adjusted their desserts. (We eat out together a lot, so this is just my observation.) I guess the question will be whether she bothers finding substitutes. Right now she's trying to lose some, so not seeking them out.
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Posts: 20,809Member Member Posts: 20,809Member Member
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.

    Yeah, this.

    A friend of mine is losing weight after changing from vegetarianism to veganism (for ethical reasons), She acknowledges it's because the foods she tended to overeat on the most were cheese and sweets with butter, cream, or egg, and that although one can find replacements as a vegan it takes more work (or so far she is happy not doing so). But I'm sure you can get around that.

    Vegan desserts are getting better all the time. Coconut whipped cream, cashew milk ice cream, it's like living in a golden age.

    Many people do see a dip in their weight after going vegan because it does remove some of the easier options for foods we may struggle to control. And I will admit it does remove a lot of incidental eating (like when people bring cookies or cake to work, they usually aren't vegan, so I skip them).

    But it's also fairly easy to either find vegan recipes for the foods you love (Pinterest is a gold mine) or to buy them at any halfway decent "health food" store. Unless one takes the route your friend takes, it would be easy to maintain or gain weight as a vegan.

    I think part of this is that she mostly ate high cal desserts at mainstream restaurants. Increasingly local restaurants will have vegan options, but not necessarily have adjusted their desserts. (We eat out together a lot, so this is just my observation.) I guess the question will be whether she bothers finding substitutes. Right now she's trying to lose some, so not seeking them out.

    Yeah, desserts are the last frontier of vegan options at mainstream restaurants. I can virtually always find something to eat for an appetizer or entree, but there are hardly ever any desserts.
  • stevencloserstevencloser Posts: 8,917Member Member Posts: 8,917Member Member
    Depends what you mean. Can a vegan lose weight? Obviously. Are you going to lose weight just by going vegan? Possibly, depending how you ate beforehand and how you eat after, potato chips are vegan after all.
    What you need for weight loss is a calorie deficit, if you want to do that while vegan, you can do that.
  • punkrockgothpunkrockgoth Posts: 534Member, Premium Member Posts: 534Member, Premium Member
    Tons of people decide to go vegan as a way to lose weight, but it's not a guarantee that you will lose weight.

    When people "lose weight by going vegan" it's because the number of calories their consuming is reduced to be less than they burn. This is a very likely outcome if you're swapping a diet high in processed meats, cheese and junk food for veggies and beans.

    However, what often happens is people going vegan try to "veganize" their existing diet. Like mentioned above, potato chips are vegan. So are Oreo cookies and Pepsi. Calorie for calorie, there's often not a lot of difference between vegan yogurt and ice cream and dairy yogurt and ice cream.

    This being said, I am a huge advocate for a vegan friendly diet, or even just heading in that direction by including more plant based foods in your life. My personal recommendation based on my experiences is try to start enjoying vegan meals, but don't try to replace your current diet with vegan versions. It tends to be more expensive and disappointing. A black bean burger, no matter how delicious will never be the same as a beef burger and if you bite into that burger expecting it to replace your beef burger, you will be disappointed and possibly never appreciate how delicious that black bean burger is. Vegan ice cream, while delicious, costs almost 3 times as much as regular ice cream and doesn't save you any calories at all.

    However, if you're thinking veganism for environmental or ethical reasons, that's a different situation.

    Bottom line is yes, you can lose weight becoming vegan. No you don't have to become vegan to lose weight. Calories in, calories out. Plants are delicious.
  • kshama2001kshama2001 Posts: 19,790Member Member Posts: 19,790Member Member
    lemurcat12 wrote: »
    Can vegans lose weight? Absolutely. I lost over 40 pounds in the last year as a vegan.

    Is a plant-based diet better for weight loss than a diet that includes meat, dairy, and eggs? There are so many different ways to eat as a vegan (and so many ways to eat meat, eggs, and dairy) that I don't think one can conclude that.

    Yeah, this.

    A friend of mine is losing weight after changing from vegetarianism to veganism (for ethical reasons), She acknowledges it's because the foods she tended to overeat on the most were cheese and sweets with butter, cream, or egg, and that although one can find replacements as a vegan it takes more work (or so far she is happy not doing so). But I'm sure you can get around that.

    Ya, I'm an omnivore and lost about 20 pounds when I was in Costa Rica for two months, during which time the vast majority of my diet consisted of plant-based foods. Instead of ice cream and other high calorie desserts, I had banana, mangoes or pineapple. Instead of cheese, I had coconut meat, which I had to work for. Low calorie fruits and vegetables were abundant; high calorie foods less so. Rice and beans don't tempt me to overeat the way pizza does. There were no Oreos or potato chips where I was.

    I also walked, gardened, cooked, and taught and practiced yoga.
  • coreyreichlecoreyreichle Posts: 1,039Member Member Posts: 1,039Member Member
    I would just try CICO for weight loss.
  • chunky_pinupchunky_pinup Posts: 759Member Member Posts: 759Member Member
    You can lose weight with any food choices. It's all about CICO.

    I've been vegan since I was about 11 years old. I've been slim and muscular. I've been obese.

    CICO.

    CICO.
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    It is worth mentioning there are some people (who I'll say are wrong) that believe a person cannot become overweight or obese on frugivore / fruititarian diet. In particular DurianRider and Freelee the Banana Girl - both of whom I detest for both their trolling, insulting the overweight, and lying about health and nutrition - are known to promote this view.
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