Community: Forum: Health & Healing

Vegan Health & Nutrition Discussion Forum

Hope you don't mind, but will copy a post I sent to my new weight loss group - sorry it's LONG:

Hope there are enough fellow vegetarians/vegans to answer this. I became vegan about 8 months ago. Within 3 months, I had gained 10 lbs. and was hypothyroid (was already on meds. and had been stable for years). Yes, I relied heavily on soy for my protein.

So then I switched to vegetarian so I could use dairy/eggs for my protein, as I am not such a fan of beans/legumes that I ate enough daily to suffice. In 5 months I gained another 10 pounds!

I have used Loseit for a week (love it, BTW). Was under my daily calories 5 out of 7 days and have lost NOTHING. The My Nutrition section has shown that I eat a lot of (healthy) fats and (healthy) carbs. It is VERY hard to get enough protein. My husband does not share my views so, after making his meal I usually don't have time to do a decent one for me, too.

I feel horrible to do so, but I am thinking of trying my old, lean meat-eating diet for a week to see if it makes a difference. I only needed to lose 5 lbs. before becoming vegan.

I am 55, do take bioidentical hormones (although they may need slight adjusting), thyroid meds, and am fairly active as I have horses and dogs.

Has anyone else gained weight being vegetarian?

Responses (9)

  • Chuck's avatar
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    Posted by Chuck at 07/14/11 15:41:34

    I found that back when I became a vegan I lost fat and gained lean muscle, resulting in a slight weight loss. I hope things are improving and you're working closely with your doctor!

  • Michealleo's avatar
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    Posted by Michealleo at 08/18/11 19:57:33

    i am also a vegetarian. and i also on low carb diet because of some healthy issues . now i am more skinnu and i guess that with eating vegetable i can never get some weight?

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    Posted by MHC48 at 08/20/13 14:07:22

    It's not at all hard to load up on fats and carbs in a vegan diet. That said, a week or two is hardly enough to see an effect on your weight. Also as one gets older our metabolism slows (I'm 65 and know all too well). It may take more regular exercise as well as watching your intake.

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    Posted by GreenGrasshopper at 02/19/12 07:28:04

    My response may come a little late but I really think it depends on the food choices you make, whether you are vegetarian/vegan or not. Why is it very hard for you to get protein and how do you know you aren't getting enough? A healthy balanced diet of vegetables, fruit, grains, legumes etc. should provide you with all the protein you need, and make it difficult to gain weight. Perhaps you need to watch your potions? Or perhaps you are not eating enough of the right foods such as green leafy vegetables? I also think it is very important for you to make yourself a healthy dinner and not just your husband, your health is just as in important if not more so than his! Most dishes can be made vegetarian and you can simply add some meat to his plate. Perhaps you should also consider seeing a nutritionist, one who agrees with a vegetarian/vegan diet and is knowledgeable in that area. I visited a doctor is a naturopath/nutritionist and found it very helpful.

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    Posted by hrefna at 02/20/12 08:48:47

    I've been a vegetarian since I was 12 (several decades ago!) and in that time I have both gained and lost weight. I gain weight when I eat too many sugars and grains. Another thing to watch is the oil: I can have a heavy hand with the olive oil bottle, but I lose weight when I measure out my oil before I use it, keep measuring spoons by your oil bottles. And I lose weight when I eat a good proportion of protein each day. I always eat lots of veggies and fruits.

    Being a vegetarian & not liking beans & legumes seems to me to be your biggest issue here: they are crucial to a balanced veggie diet that is low in processed food. Can you get yourself some of the kicking new vegan cookbooks out there (I highly recommend Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Jae Steele) and find ways to cook beans & legumes that you like? Another hint for us vegetarians is nonfat greek yogurt: it is very high in protein, 10g of protein per 100g of yogurt, and is a great way to add protein to a vegetarian diet.

    But one final issue is portion control: it is easy to give oneself permission to over eat when you are eating healthy food. Binging on homemade bean soup with slices of warm homebaked bread doesn't seem like it will lead to weight gain, but calories are calories. If you want to lose weight, pay attention to your portions. Weight Watchers is a good way to do that if you need guidance and their Points Plus program is veg friendly, it lets you eat whatever kind of food you want, you just have to work out the food's points value.

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    Posted by helsinkipols at 08/19/13 04:35:18

    I completely agree with what thiamin12 has to say on this. Being vegan is a healthy way to lose weight and stay healthy.

  • thiamin12's avatar
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    Posted by thiamin12 at 11/07/12 20:58:13

    I must say that being a vegetarian would never let you gain weight. many people adopt this vegan lifestyle to lose weight. Even i am a vegan and i have never seen any weight gain during this period.

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    Posted by Calcifa23 at 08/19/13 13:24:32

    Hi! I also agree with thiamin12. But there could be other reasons becauso you gained weight. Maybe you have a problem with your thyroid gland.

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    Posted by GarrettHnatiuk at 06/17/14 22:07:46

    Yes it's possible. Simply you got to eat the correct foods. Because you aren't eating meats, you're losing out on the proteins and fats are all around in meats. To replace that, you need meals such as nuts, which are high in fats as well as protein. And because you will be obtaining less protein, you will likely have a bigger appetite therefore eat more within quantity as well.

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