A vegan diet abstains from consuming animal products, including dairy, and is mainly focused on consuming food from plant sources. Most people follow a strict vegan diet to lose excess weight. The diet generally consists of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and various other plant-based products. A vegan diet is a great way to lose weight and boost metabolism.
Metabolism is the rate at which your body converts energy derived from the food we consume. Higher metabolism provides better health benefits and aids weight loss. In this article, we will discuss how going vegan can boost metabolism.
Boosting Metabolism With Vegan Diet
Vegan diets have proved to be healthy and highly effective for weight loss. Vegans don’t eat any sort of food that comes from animals, such as eggs, fish, and dairy products. In its place, they focus on consuming lots of fruits and vegetables, plant-based milk, legumes and beans, and other non-dairy products and alternatives to meat.
Some people; however, choose to be vegans due to ethical reasons, such as protecting the animals, which leads to a low-calorie intake and fewer carbs. By practicing a vegan diet, you are able to replace most of your food with high-fiber contents that not only keep you full for longer but also improve your metabolic rate.
Research suggests that vegans are able to lose weight quickly because they consume less food that contains higher calories. Plus, fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, and legumes are all essentially healthy and promote weight loss by boosting metabolism. A vegan diet is a high-fiber diet that aids digestion and refrains you from overeating. A low-fat diet also subsequently burns more calories at a faster rate without having to do much exercise.
Moreover, a high-fiber diet consumes higher energy to burn and digest food. This in turn increases metabolism level. For instance, vegan diets are full of legumes, beans, and whole grains – all foods that are rich in fiber. Fiber takes up a lot of energy to burn and digest. So, as our body gets busy breaking down fiber into smaller particles, it generates heat. This process, also called the thermic effect of food, burns calories and increases our metabolic rate.
A vegan diet; however, may not be as effective in older adults as it will be in younger adults due to the changes in metabolism with age. Nonetheless, you will notice dramatic changes in the shape of your body even if you are as old as 53. The vegan diet is proof that you can turn things around and still lose sufficient weight provided that you stick to a healthy routine.
Some researchers from a physics committee studied a group of 244 overweight adults and put them on a 16-week diet plan. The group was divided into two. The first half was told to follow a strict vegan diet; whereas, the other half was asked to follow their regular diet plan without making any major changes. The exercise habits of both groups were kept the same.
By the end of the research, the first group with the vegan diet had lost more than 13 pounds along with a significant amount of body fat. The other group did not deliver any major weight loss results. In addition, the participants with a vegan diet also burned calories 14% faster compared to regular participants.
The findings from this study reflect how a vegan diet can make drastic changes to our bodies. It also proves that a vegan diet boosts the level of metabolism, but most researchers wonder if it is the right and healthier approach to weight loss.
Is It The Right Approach?
Abstaining from consuming some of the major food groups in our regular diet may not be a healthy option unless you pay attention to your nutrient intake. Strict vegans are required to supplement their diet with the essential vitamins that are only found in animal sources, such as the vitamin B-12. In order to meet the body’s requirements for nutrient intake, vegans must consume vitamin-fortified cereals and soy products to avoid developing deficiencies. A vegan diet is a healthy option for those looking for ways to boost their metabolism and lose weight faster as long as you ensure that your body is getting a balanced amount of all of the required nutrients either through food or through supplements.
Regardless of the pitfalls of following a vegan diet, you can lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle. The key is to focus on vegan foods that are rich in nutrients and contain healthy fat. Here are some of the options for healthy vegan food:
- Whole grains
- Seeds and nuts
- Citrus fruits and green vegetables
- Legumes and beans
Avoid or limit having vegan foods that contain the following ingredients:
- Food additives
You Can Eat Carbs If You Are Vegan
Did you know that vegan food, particularly unprocessed ones, contains many complex carbs that can enhance the thermic effect and make the body burn calories at a faster rate? This is because the complex carbs in the vegan diet help to boost metabolism that increases the number of calories being burned at the time of food digestion. Plus, by consuming the carbs you get from a vegan diet, you will feel more fulfilled and will likely consume fewer calories. Therefore, a vegan diet can actually help you lose weight without even having the intent to lose weight.
Eating a vegan diet may help you achieve dramatic results for your weight loss journey. But even so, it is always best to speak with your doctor or dietician before making any changes to your diet. You must ensure that you receive the essential nutrients that are only found in animal food and discuss your regular eating and exercise habits.