Why Am I Gaining Weight On A Vegetarian Diet? Foods To Avoid

Eating a vegetarian diet has become popular worldwide among many people, especially those who are obsessed to lose weight. Vegetarian diet is also considered much safe for health as compared to eating meat and other non vegetarian foods. Research suggests that vegan diet lowers the risk of high blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease, diabetes and some types of cancer.

However, much to their despair, some people find they are putting on more number of pounds instead of losing weight even though they have dropped meat and other animal products from their diet.

So what must be the reason? Every individual must be inquisitive to know it. Let us understand and reason out why it happens.

Reasons For Weight Gain On A Vegetarian Diet

There are several possible reasons that may attribute to weight gain after going all vegetarian. Let us know each of them.

  • One of the reasons is that you may be eating too much of starchy and processed foods. When meat and animal product is not in your dish, you make extra place for other types of food, especially those made up of starch and carbohydrates.
    For example you may fill your plate with items made up of potatoes, grains and pastas. The problem with this food is they digest more quickly than protein foods. You will feel hungry within few hours and eat more food.
  • Vegetarian foods contain more amount of fiber. These cause increased amount of fibers in the intestinal tract. Fiber is known to hold more amount of water in the intestine. Thus excess of water can add up few pounds in your body, although there is no increase in the fat amount in the body. So even if you are losing fat from your body, the retained water will be the cause for increase in few pounds.
  • Many people who switch on to vegetarian diet do not know what exactly to include in their diet. They tend to include in their diet foods that contain increased amount of oil and oily food. They thus start overeating nuts, seeds, fruits (avocados) and vegetables that are rich in fats. These on the reverse may add on to the calories which may ultimately result in weight gain.
  • People who opt for vegetarian diet often eat certain food preparations that contain milk and dairy products such as cheese, yogurt and milk in abundance. These dairy products are packed with high calories. Eating such food naturally will increase weight.

What Foods To Avoid And Eat On Vegetarian Diet?

If you strictly intend to be a vegetarian, you may have to review your vegetarian food pyramid. Eat foods that provide nutrients as well as keep you satiated for a long time similar to meat and other animal foods.

  • Your meal has to include whole grains. Some people advice avoiding grains entirely. But grains are rich source of vitamin minerals and vitamins, aside from protein and carbohydrates. Whole grains contain complex carbohydrates which our body needs for a prolonged period as a source of energy. They also digest slowly and thus there in no sudden ups and down in glucose level. Avoid eating white rice, white pasta, etc. Instead include brown rice and whole grain pasta in your meals.
  • Avoid sugar intake. Drink tea and coffee without sugar. Sugar is one of the major causes of increase in weight even if you are eating a vegetarian diet.
  • Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables. Kale, turnip green, mustard, collard, spinach, broccoli etc are rich source of calcium and iron which help in losing weight. Lack of calcium in body will interfere in all the effort you take in losing weight.
  • Drink enough water. Drink seven to eight glasses of water in a day. It will help to cleanse the toxins in the body which hamper in your weight loss program.
  • Lastly exercise is essential part of weight loss program whether you are eating meat or vegetables. Sweat up to lose weight. A walk for 45 minutes, swimming, cycling, cardio, gymnastics, etc and other forms of exercise are important to keep you fit and healthy.