Going vegan!

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Going vegan!

Postby Mojo » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:35 am

I had my physical today. My weight was 299 pounds, down 26 since the beginning of March and down 76 since April 2011 when I hit my personal high of 375. My cholesterol is at 190, less than the 200 limit for healthy range. My triglycerides are in good order. So I told my doctor I wanted to go from ovo-lacto vegetarian to vegan, and that I wanted to quit taking the fish oil supplements that he originally wanted me to take because of my formerly bad cholesterol. He agreed it would be fine for me. So as soon as I'm done with the eggs I currently have in the fridge, I'll be vegan...at least at home. When I'm away from home, I may need to be a bit more open...but will take the vegan options as long as they are available.
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Ben » Thu Jul 04, 2013 6:58 am

Hi Mojo,
299lb = 135kg, which if you don't mind me saying so, seems high.
I am glad you are engaged in a lifestyle change for your health and wellbeing.
Are you engaged in regular intense exercise?
Do you utilize calorie tracking applications? If you are looking at reducing your weight then I can recommend both.
kind regards,

Ben
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Mojo » Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:15 am

Its very high...but getting better. My blood chemistry is good. I follow the South Beach Diet, which adapts quite well to a vegetarian lifestyle. My exercise right now is walking. I was up to running 3 miles straight a little more than a year ago plus weights, plus yoga... I got burnt out and stopped exercising altogether. For now I'm just walking. My job has me on my feet 8 hours a day as a nursing aide. This is enough for me right now. My doc said he's cool with it too considering my progress otherwise.
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Ben » Thu Jul 04, 2013 8:33 am

Great to hear it, Mojo.
kind regards,

Ben
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Coyote » Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:21 am

I was vegan for some years. It is a good way to cut calories as you are restricted from many rich and calorie dense foods that often make up an unhealthy diet. Make sure you get enough iron, calcium and B vitamins, and that you don't compensate for the lack of animal foods by eating fatty junk food.
Also get plenty of sun for that vitamin D :thumbsup:

If you are trying to lose weight, some way of tracking a calorie deficit is a good idea.

Good luck
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby BlackBird » Thu Jul 04, 2013 11:05 am

May I suggest flax seed oil as an alternative to fish oil? It is also rich in omega 3s and has some DHA or whatever it is that gives you the goodness.
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Ben » Thu Jul 04, 2013 12:10 pm

BlackBird wrote:or whatever it is that gives you the goodness.

That would be extract of snake oil.
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Mojo » Thu Jul 04, 2013 2:14 pm

BlackBird wrote:May I suggest flax seed oil as an alternative to fish oil? It is also rich in omega 3s and has some DHA or whatever it is that gives you the goodness.


I asked if I should take an Omega-3 supplement or switch from olive to canola oil and he didn't seem to think I needed to. He said to continue taking my multivitamin, and recommended the cheapest I could find. It has 18mcg (300% rda) B12 which would be my main concern.

I eat 1.5-2 cups of beans/lentils daily plus at least 5 cups of vegetables, 3 servings of fruit, 3 servings of whole grains or starchy vegetables, 3 servings of almond or soy milk (I love Hiland Almondmilk). I have one or two servings of nuts/peanuts every day.A stated, I cook with olive oil.
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby BlackBird » Thu Jul 04, 2013 2:19 pm

You're making me hungry ;)
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby marc108 » Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:05 pm

Mojo wrote:I asked if I should take an Omega-3 supplement or switch from olive to canola oil and he didn't seem to think I needed to. He said to continue taking my multivitamin, and recommended the cheapest I could find. It has 18mcg (300% rda) B12 which would be my main concern.


congratulations on all your success :)

if i may interject my opinion here, these are common mistakes we (nutritionists, dietitians) see made by doctors (who have little to no training in nutrition). unless you are using an unrefined canola oil regularly or eating a few handful of walnuts you wont be able to meet your needs for omega3 as a vegan. a tablespoon of flax oil a few times a week is, imo, a necessity for most people (especially vegans) and would only serve to benefit you. i think blackbirds suggestion to use a DHA enhanced flax seed oil is also smart.

also, taking cheap multivitamins puts you at risk for consuming a contaminated supplement (and extremely common problem). using something reasonably priced but of good quality is the best option, not using whatever is cheap.
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Mojo » Thu Jul 04, 2013 9:56 pm

I picked up some ground flaxseed and was planning on adding some to my daily oatmeal. Would that not be as good as cooking with dha flaxseed oil? I have been buying Equate One Daily Men's Health, which is a Walmart generic for One A Day.

http://mobile.walmart.com/ip/Equate-Men ... t/10324918

It apparently has animal based gelatin in it...
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Ben » Thu Jul 04, 2013 10:49 pm

Personally, I wouldn't bother with omega-3 oils.
Recent research conducted on people with cardiovascular risk factors indicate omega 3 oils have no health benefits.
(N Engl J Med 2013; 368:1800-1808May 9, 2013DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1205409).

My advice is to do your own research and listen to your doctor.
Be wary of the marketing of a lot of 'natural' products and 'bro-science'. In my opinion, if a health claim is not supported with evidence that has been published in a respected peer-reviewed journal then its probably bogus.

I am in a similar situation to yourself, Mojo, and my focus is on sustainable lifestyle change that incorporates a balanced calorie-controlled diet and regular high-intensity exercise with the aid of myfitnesspal.com and a heart rate monitor. I get all my nutrients from my food and I don't take any supplements. As a vegan you may want to boost your b12, but that is a discussion you should have with your doctor. You may just find you might be getting enough b12 in your diet.
All the best,

Ben
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

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Re: Going vegan!

Postby marc108 » Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:02 am

Ben wrote:Personally, I wouldn't bother with omega-3 oils.
Recent research conducted on people with cardiovascular risk factors indicate omega 3 oils have no health benefits.
(N Engl J Med 2013; 368:1800-1808May 9, 2013DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1205409).


Respectfully, what you are doing is incorrectly extrapolating information from that study. I actually read that study and all it says is that treatment with 1 gram of fish oil per day didn't reduce death in people who already had cardiovascular disease. You can't say that because omega3 oils had no benefit in a diseased population that they have no benefit period. It's logically incorrect and actually counter to most research. Omega 3 fats are 1 of 2 essential fats. you NEED them. if you don't meet your daily needs you will have physiological dysfunction.

What I'm saying isnt bro-science or marketing any natural products. I am finishing up my bachelors in nutrition (all my actual nutrition coursework is done) and what I'm saying is right out of the textbooks and standard practice. You either eat the omega3 fats from food or you use a supplement... or your body does not function correctly. Mojo's doctor was simply incorrect... and saying one should have discussions about nutrition with a doctor who isnt trained in nutrition isnt the correct thing to do. The very first university class I took on nutrition, the first day, was spent emphasizing things like the fact that doctors do no receive adequate enough training on nutrition to be able to give reliable advice. What Mojo should do, if he has questions about nutrition, is talk to an RD.

For the sake of clarity and truthfulness I think it important that anyone with questions consult reliable sources. I will spare everyone my posting dozens of studies showing the benefits of omega 3 supplementation and the low levels of omega3 fats in vegans/vegetarians...

a basic overview of omega 3's biological functions:
http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/o ... /omega3fa/

good website for research based nutrition information:
http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/

Q&A on omega3 with Dr. Sacks (Professor of Cardiovascular Disease Prevention, Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health) where he says:

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/omega-3/
People who do not eat fish or other foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids should consider taking an omega-3 supplement of 500 mg per day; fish oil is used in supplements, but there are also vegetarian supplements that have ALA
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Ben » Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:59 am

Thanks Marc for your response.
kind regards,

Ben
"Only those who take to meditation with good intentions can be assured of success. With the development of the purity and the power of the mind backed by the insight into the ultimate truth of nature, one might be able to do a lot of things in the right direction for the benefit of mankind."

Sayagyi U Ba Khin


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Re: Going vegan!

Postby BlackBird » Fri Jul 05, 2013 2:55 am

Ben wrote:Personally, I wouldn't bother with omega-3 oils.
Recent research conducted on people with cardiovascular risk factors indicate omega 3 oils have no health benefits.
(N Engl J Med 2013; 368:1800-1808May 9, 2013DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1205409).


And then there is a variety of literature, studies and medical opinions that say omega 3 oils have a lot of health benefits. Most important in my eye is their effects upon depression. But here is just a few of the hundreds of links I could have provided that show that omega 3 oils have positive health benefits:

http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2013/ ... ence-hsph/
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-575 ... ncer-risk/
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 111238.htm
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healt ... ega-3.html
http://www.medicaldaily.com/articles/17 ... gnancy.htm
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC533861/
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23396496
http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/su ... atty-acids

So personally Ben, I would bother. And this new study that supposedly shows that omega 3's do not contribute benefits to those with cardiovascular disease, does not render them useless, not by any stretch of the imagination.

with metta
Jack
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Mojo » Fri Jul 05, 2013 3:12 am

Well, I just made some steel cut oats cooked with almond milk. I added some frozen blueberries at the end with a couple spoons of flaxseed and a bit of salt and Splenda. It was fantastic. I eat oatmeal every day so this should be a great way to get my ALA.
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby BlackBird » Fri Jul 05, 2013 3:20 am

Well very good Mojo.

I am glad my suggestion of flax seed has culminated in a positive outcome. Although I had never considered simply putting the oil on foods, but rather gel caps so as to avoid what I would have presumed to be a less than delectable taste. How does it taste, besides oiley?
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

Nanavira Thera's teachings - An existential approach to the Dhamma | Ven. Bodhesako's essay on anicca
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby manas » Fri Jul 05, 2013 3:24 am

Mojo wrote:I had my physical today. My weight was 299 pounds, down 26 since the beginning of March and down 76 since April 2011 when I hit my personal high of 375. My cholesterol is at 190, less than the 200 limit for healthy range. My triglycerides are in good order. So I told my doctor I wanted to go from ovo-lacto vegetarian to vegan, and that I wanted to quit taking the fish oil supplements that he originally wanted me to take because of my formerly bad cholesterol. He agreed it would be fine for me. So as soon as I'm done with the eggs I currently have in the fridge, I'll be vegan...at least at home. When I'm away from home, I may need to be a bit more open...but will take the vegan options as long as they are available.


Well done, Mojo. Sounds like a good plan. :thumbsup:

I'm basically lacto-ovo vegetarian, although the eggs have to be truly free-range (and these are expensive, unless you know a person with chickens) because I've found that ordinary eggs from caged or otherwise stressed hens tend to make me nauseous. (I mean this literally.) But from time to time I step up to the Vegan platform, and my mind and body always feels clearer and lighter for it. Just remember not to 'carb out' too much. The diet needs to have a balance between (preferably whole) grains, protein sources (eg nuts, seeds, legumes, beans), veggies (remember to eat green leafy veggies also!) and fruits. And some fermented foods are good also, such as miso (great in soups). One more thing you should learn is how to correctly combine foods. For example, fruit should be eaten on it's own and not at the same meal as other foods, because it digests faster than, for eg, grains or beans. If we mix fruit and, say, grains together in our stomach, we can end up with unhealthy fermentation in our gut, which taxes the body of energy.

I wish you well with this health-giving diet.

kind regards,
manas
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby Mojo » Fri Jul 05, 2013 3:41 am

BlackBird wrote:Well very good Mojo.

I am glad my suggestion of flax seed has culminated in a positive outcome. Although I had never considered simply putting the oil on foods, but rather gel caps so as to avoid what I would have presumed to be a less than delectable taste. How does it taste, besides oiley?


I used ground flaxseed not flaxseed oil. =)
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Re: Going vegan!

Postby BlackBird » Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:37 am

Mojo wrote:
BlackBird wrote:Well very good Mojo.

I am glad my suggestion of flax seed has culminated in a positive outcome. Although I had never considered simply putting the oil on foods, but rather gel caps so as to avoid what I would have presumed to be a less than delectable taste. How does it taste, besides oiley?


I used ground flaxseed not flaxseed oil. =)


Ah whoops, guess I misread you completely :)

That sounds much more palatable.
"And so, because this Teaching is so different from what Westerners are accustomed to, they will try to adapt the Teaching to their own framework. What they need to learn to do is not to adapt the Teaching to their own point of view but to adapt their own point of view to the Teaching. This is called saddhá, or faith, and it means giving oneself to the Teaching even if the Teaching is contrary to one’s own preconceived notions of the way things are."- Ven Bodhesako

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