Wondering what the best vegetarian diet plan to lose weight is? Dieting is a major undertaking, whether you eat meat or not. There’s that now infamous statistic floating around that 95 percent of all dieters fail to keep their weight off long term. It’s been around for years and years at this point, and no one seems to link to the direct study this came from. Maybe because it’s from a 1959 study that only studied 100 people, according to the New York Times.
Culturally, we like to feel like we’re not the only ones failing to lose weight. The UCLA even did a research review in 2007 on the dismal rates at which people can actually keep weight off. The numbers are all over the place, but some studies suggest that one to two thirds of dieters regain more weight than they lost in four or five years.
So maybe it’s not a matter of thinking, ‘hey, I’m on a diet.’ You’ll need to look at living a sustainable, healthy life in the long term as part of your vegetarian diet plan. Below are several ways to diet without feeling like you’re dieting. Here’s the best vegetarian diet plan to lose weight.
Increase the fiber
If you’re a vegetarian who’s trying to lose weight, you’re already on the right track. Cutting meat out of your life means less of those fatty burgers and fried chicken. When it comes to losing weight, the CDC states that feeling full is determined by the amount of food you eat, rather than the calories you’re taking in. Lowering fat and increasing fiber is the best way to feel fuller longer, which means eating tons of fruit and veggies that are a mainstay of vegetarian diets.
What’s more is the CDC recommends adding beans to your cooking to increase fiber, nutrients and satiety of your food. Just dumping a can of kidney, white or pinto beans into your favorite soup, vegetarian chili or whatever you can get creative with is a great way to add protein and feel fuller. Kidney beans alone are at about 225 calories for a full cup of boiled beans, while packing about 15 grams of protein and about 11 grams of fiber.
To count calories or to not count calories?
Nothing screams “I’m on a diet” more than counting calories. But the fact is, you’ll need to lose 3,500 calories to get rid of one pound, so that means cutting 500 to 1,000 calories per day to lose one to two pounds per week. So if you want to make sure you’re actually going to lose the weight, instead of existing on some fad diet pipe dream, you’re going to have to use math.
Luckily, it has never been easier to calculate calories. With apps like Lose It! to help you count calories and plan meals, counting calories takes seconds per day once you have all your food calculated and added into the app. It’s even helpful after diets for maintaining weight. It really does just become an easy part of your lifestyle.
Identify your favorite low-calories foods and stick with them
One of the easiest ways to stick to a healthier lifestyle is to find your favorite low-calorie foods and make them your go-to snacks. And non-meat diets are chock full of satisfying, low calorie options. The obvious choices are salads loaded with greens and fruit, of course. Vegetable noodles are also a high-nutrient, lower-calorie option. A couple tablespoons of hummus on veggies is a satisfying snack.
Another key option is nuts. You’ll have to keep an eye on your portions, as they can be surprisingly high in calories. A cup of whole almonds has a whopping 827 calories, with each almond being about seven calories. However, between the protein and the healthy fats, a handful of nuts will satisfy you.
Your tastes will vary. So experiment with different foods, calculate their calories and keep them in your cupboard. But this is the best vegetarian diet plan to lose weight.