Looking for low-carb diet recipes for a vegetarian

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    Dec 01, 2013 5:33 AM GMT
    Hey guys,
    After long break from the gym and healthy eating, I am trying to get back in the habits of working out and eating right. Since I am trying to lose some weight while doing this, I thought I might give the low-carb diet a try. But I didn't know where to go, as I have researched online but found main ingredients are tofu for most meals. I know that tofu is from soy, which contains estrogen, so I didn't want to eat soy products everyday. Any recipes that you know that can be used for vegetarian breakfast/dinner? I usually have salad for lunch as I don't find enough time to get a proper meal...
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    Dec 02, 2013 12:01 AM GMT
    When people say "low-carb" what they mean is low-starch. Starch, sugar (anything that is sweet), and lack of exercise are what make one fat.

    Green vegetables are carbs, but are low-starch. You will never get fat eating them.

    For protein you can look into nuts and seeds. Books and sites for raw-food eating will provide you with recipes and methods for nuts and seeds. These have the additional benefit of healthy fat, of which you will need plenty.

    If you eat dairy, you can get lots of nutrition and protein from eggs, cheese, and yogurt. Go for full fat versions.

    I used to be on a bean-centered diet. Beans are a nice balance between protein and starch. I found that Red lentils and yellow-split peas cook quickly and digest more easily than most beans.

    If you are trying to cut weight, give up sweets, including fruit. Especially avoid fruit juice.
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    Dec 02, 2013 12:14 AM GMT
    The only other way to get protein is from legume / rice combination (TONS of carbs), eggs, yogurt, nuts (moderate carbs with protein), cheese, and whey. If I were you, I would not go the rice and beans route.

    Focus on egg dishes, not cheese (too fatty and not much protein for the calories. Cut out one of every three yolks to keep cholesterol down. Use whey protein in shakes and smoothies to make sure you get your protein. Greek yogurt (higher in protein than regular yogurt) and cottage cheese might be good sources of protein for you, as well. Almonds are a pretty good snack.

    I don't use recipes much. I have a smoothie with fruit (berries), greek yogurt, and whey protein powder every day after I work out. I eat chicken breast with salad for lunch (you could sub boiled eggs for the chicken). For dinner I have turkey meatballs, red sauce, and broccoli (you could do a scrambled egg / veggie stir fry for dinner with a favorite Chinese sauce - just watch the sugar content in the sauces you buy at the store).

    If you could add fish, you would open up a lot of options for yourself, but I was vegetarian for a while. I found I just couldn't get enough protein to build muscle. Maybe it's just my body chemistry. I'm not a dietician, and I do not play one on TV, so take my ideas with a grain of salt.
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Dec 02, 2013 12:18 AM GMT
    Not sure why it is that vegetarians asking these questions hardly ever state their particular limits. Do you eat fish or eggs or dairy items?

    Vegetables are full of carbs, but Nivek has some good points. Starches are probably what you want to avoid. On the other hand this could all go off balance pretty easily.

    I'd say the first step is to study the nutritional content of your preferred foods and learn where the carbs, fats and proteins are. At the same time I would look carefully at your exercise routine to see if it is not more toning that you need instead of dieting.
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    Dec 02, 2013 9:06 AM GMT
    Sorry for the confusion. When I said vegetarian, I always tend to generalize the version - as in just people who don't eat meat. I do eat animal byproducts.
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    Dec 02, 2013 9:08 AM GMT
    Nivek saidWhen people say "low-carb" what they mean is low-starch. Starch, sugar (anything that is sweet), and lack of exercise are what make one fat.

    Green vegetables are carbs, but are low-starch. You will never get fat eating them.

    For protein you can look into nuts and seeds. Books and sites for raw-food eating will provide you with recipes and methods for nuts and seeds. These have the additional benefit of healthy fat, of which you will need plenty.

    If you eat dairy, you can get lots of nutrition and protein from eggs, cheese, and yogurt. Go for full fat versions.

    I used to be on a bean-centered diet. Beans are a nice balance between protein and starch. I found that Red lentils and yellow-split peas cook quickly and digest more easily than most beans.

    If you are trying to cut weight, give up sweets, including fruit. Especially avoid fruit juice.


    Thank you for the info. For some reason, I was thinking ALL carbs... I mean, I am not that into sweets so that won't be any problem... The only problem would be starch... I do tend to eat a lot of pasta since it is cheap and easy to cook. I've been switching to quinoa, cous cous, and brown rice... Anything others that I can add to? I've found some that suggests whole wheat pasta...
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    Dec 02, 2013 4:11 PM GMT
    hkinnyc12 saidThe only problem would be starch... I do tend to eat a lot of pasta since it is cheap and easy to cook. I've been switching to quinoa, cous cous, and brown rice... Anything others that I can add to? I've found some that suggests whole wheat pasta...
    Cous cous is a wheat pasta, so its just eating more pasta. Brown rice and quinoa are better choices for being glutten-free. But they are still starch.

    The wonderful thing about starchy food is that its affordable, easy to prepare in a variety of ways, and delicious. Just about everything else is more difficult and more expensive than starch. On the downside, most people have a much harder time shedding unwanted fat on a starch-centered diet.
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    Dec 03, 2013 5:15 AM GMT
    Nivek said
    hkinnyc12 saidThe only problem would be starch... I do tend to eat a lot of pasta since it is cheap and easy to cook. I've been switching to quinoa, cous cous, and brown rice... Anything others that I can add to? I've found some that suggests whole wheat pasta...
    Cous cous is a wheat pasta, so its just eating more pasta. Brown rice and quinoa are better choices for being glutten-free. But they are still starch.

    The wonderful thing about starchy food is that its affordable, easy to prepare in a variety of ways, and delicious. Just about everything else is more difficult and more expensive than starch. On the downside, most people have a much harder time shedding unwanted fat on a starch-centered diet.


    What would you recommend eating? I mean, I guess I can only eat veggies, nuts, and other things that you have mentioned before... But for dinner, I prefer to have something "rice" type along with my dinner...