Isn’t losing weight when going vegan the reward for helping animals and the environment? Apparently not in my case. After watching documentaries and reading The China Study, it seemed everyone lost weight immediately when they changed their diet to plant based. All of the research was telling me that carbs are not bad, you can eat however much you want as long as it’s plant based, the weight comes right off, you’ll feel so much more energized to work out, you don’t even have to count calories or think about it. I believed the hype and got excited for my hot new vegan bod! Geez I was going to have to get all new clothes and look how I’ve always wanted without even having to starve myself. How simple! …. Nope. My internist warned me about a month into the switch that some of her patients actually gained weight when switching because of all of the starchy beans, lentils, and carbs that replace meat. She told me to just get my protein from protein bars or powder. I brushed her off and thought, nah the only vegans I actually know (all 2 of them) have six packs. Everyone was telling me contradicting information.
I started finding recipes and cooking and we got into the groove. We ate as much as we wanted, but it was all healthy right? We deserved to because we weren’t eating the other stuff. We tried to only eat brown carbs, and avoided the fake, processed meat replacements, but instead of losing weight we started gradually gaining a few pounds and the frustration started setting in. How can I be gaining weight going vegan?! Why am I so tired and have no motivation to work out? What is wrong with me? I know I’m already low in B12, so I should be remembering to take it every day, but I don’t. I researched why I was gaining or what I’m doing wrong to make this happen, but I couldn’t find anything helpful. I’ve searched “healthy vegan for weight loss” on Pinterest and found nothing that seems like it’s actually going to work. I’ve read blogs and found no free meal plans or advice that I haven’t heard before. I’ve been counting calories again on My Fitness Pal, but alas nothing changes. I know drinking more water and working out is something I need to start doing on a more consistent basis, and it would be helpful if the craving for Thai and Chinese would settle down. I feel like Rachel McAdams in Mean Girls, eating beans like Kalteen bars and blowing up. I’d like to just figure out what the real deal is so I can stay vegan and be my healthiest self (and at least fit in my 8’s again without feeling like Pillsbury dough boy), so if any of you have any advice on what has worked for you, I’d appreciate it!