Vegan Diet For Beginners

Welcome to my post on the vegan diet for beginners. As you have got here you must have been thinking about this type of diet for a while or maybe you are just curious. I have researched this form of diet and here are my findings.

vegan diet for beginners


Vegan Diet For Beginners

As someone who is new to the vegan diet you may not have all the information you need yet, so let’s have a look at what this diet is all about.

Different Types of Vegan Diets

There are different varieties of vegan diets. The most common include:

  • Whole-food vegan diet: A diet based on a wide variety of whole plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds.
  • Raw-food vegan diet: A vegan diet based on raw fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds or plant foods cooked at temperatures below 118°F (48°C).
  • 80/10/10: The 80/10/10 diet is a raw-food vegan diet that limits fat-rich plants such as nuts and avocados and relies mainly on raw fruits and soft greens instead. Also referred to as the low-fat, raw-food vegan diet or fruitarian diet.
  • The starch solution: A low-fat, high-carb vegan diet similar to the 80/10/10 but that focuses on cooked starches like potatoes, rice and corn instead of fruit.
  • Raw till 4: A low-fat vegan diet inspired by the 80/10/10 and starch solution. Raw foods are consumed until 4 p.m., with the option of a cooked plant-based meal for dinner.
  • The thrive diet: The thrive diet is a raw-food vegan diet. Followers eat plant-based, whole foods that are raw or minimally cooked at low temperatures.
  • Junk-food vegan diet: A vegan diet lacking in whole plant foods that relies heavily on mock meats and cheeses, fries, vegan desserts and other heavily processed vegan foods.

Although several variations of the vegan diet exist, most scientific research rarely differentiates between different types of vegan diets.

Therefore, the information provided in this article relates to vegan diets as a whole.


Vegan Diets Can Help You Lose Weight

Vegans tend to be thinner and have a lower body mass index (BMI) than non-vegans

This might explain why an increasing number of people turn to vegan diets as a way to lose excess weight.

Part of the weight-related benefits vegans experience may be explained by factors other than diet. These may include healthier lifestyle choices, such as physical activity, and other health-related behaviors.

Interestingly, the weight loss advantage persists even when whole-food-based diets are used as control diets.

What’s more, researchers generally report that participants on vegan diets lose more weight than those following calorie-restricted diets, even when they’re allowed to eat until they feel full

The natural tendency to eat fewer calories on a vegan diet may be caused by a higher dietary fiber intake, which can make you feel fuller.

BOTTOM LINE: Vegan diets seem very effective at helping people naturally reduce the amount of calories they eat, resulting in weight loss.

Adopting a vegan diet may help keep your blood sugar in check and type 2 diabetes at bay.Vegan Diets, Blood Sugar and Type 2 Diabetes

Several studies show that vegans benefit from lower blood sugar levels, higher insulin sensitivity and up to a 78% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than non-vegans

In addition, vegan diets reportedly lower blood sugar levels in diabetics up to 2.4 times more than diets recommended by the ADA, AHA and NCEP

Part of the advantage could be explained by the higher fiber intake, which may blunt the blood sugar response. A vegan diet’s weight loss effects may further contribute to its ability to lower blood sugar levels

BOTTOM LINE: Vegan diets seem particularly effective at improving markers of blood sugar control. They may also lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Vegan Diets and Heart Health

A vegan diet may help keep your heart healthy.

Observational studies report vegans may have up to a 75% lower risk of developing high blood pressure and 42% lower risk of dying from heart disease

Several report that vegan diets are much more effective at reducing blood sugar, LDL and total cholesterol than diets they are compared to.

These effects could be especially beneficial since reducing blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar may reduce heart disease risk by up to 46%.

BOTTOM LINE:Vegan diets may improve heart health. However, more high-quality studies are needed before strong conclusions can be drawn.

vegan diet

Foods to Avoid

Vegans avoid eating any animal foods, as well as any foods containing ingredients derived from animals. These include:

  • Meat and poultry: Beef, lamb, pork, veal, horse, organ meat, wild meat, chicken, turkey, goose, duck, quail, etc.
  • Fish and seafood: All types of fish, anchovies, shrimp, squid, scallops, calamari, mussels, crab, lobster, etc.
  • Dairy: Milk, yogurt, cheese, butter, cream, ice cream, etc.
  • Eggs: From chickens, quails, ostriches, fish, etc.
  • Bee products: Honey, bee pollen, royal jelly, etc.
  • Animal-based ingredients: Whey, casein, lactose, egg white albumen, gelatin, cochineal or carmine, isinglass, shellac, L-cysteine, animal-derived vitamin D3 and fish-derived omega-3 fatty acids
  • BOTTOM LINE: Vegans avoid consuming any animal flesh, animal byproducts or foods containing an ingredient from animal origin.

Foods to Eat

Health-conscious vegans substitute animal products with plant-based replacements, such as:

  • Tofu, tempeh and seitan: These provide a versatile protein-rich alternative to meat, fish, poultry and eggs in many recipes.
  • Legumes: Foods such as beans, lentils and peas are excellent sources of many nutrients and beneficial plant compounds. Sprouting, fermenting and proper cooking can increase nutrient absorption.
  • Nuts and nut butters: Especially unblanched and unroasted varieties, which are good sources of iron, fiber, magnesium, zinc, selenium and vitamin E.
  • Seeds: Especially hemp, chia and flaxseeds, which contain a good amount of protein and beneficial omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Calcium-fortified plant milks and yogurts: These help vegans achieve their recommended dietary calcium intakes. Opt for varieties also fortified with vitamins B12 and D whenever possible.
  • Algae: Spirulina and chlorella are good sources of complete protein. Other varieties are great sources of iodine.
  • Nutritional yeast: This is an easy way to increase the protein content of vegan dishes and add an interesting cheesy flavor. Pick vitamin B12-fortified varieties whenever possible.
  • Whole grains, cereals and pseudocereals: These are a great source of complex carbs, fiber, iron, B-vitamins and several minerals. Spelt, teff, amaranth and quinoa are especially high-protein options.
  • Sprouted and fermented plant foods: Ezekiel bread, tempeh, miso, natto, sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi and kombucha often contain probiotics and vitamin K2. Sprouting and fermenting can also help improve mineral absorption.
  • Fruits and vegetables: Both are great foods to increase your nutrient intake. Leafy greens such as bok choy, spinach, kale, watercress and mustard greens are particularly high in iron and calcium.

BOTTOM LINE: These minimally processed plant foods are great additions to any vegan refrigerator or pantry.


Vegan Diet For Beginners

A Vegan Sample Menu for One Week

To help get you started, here’s a simple plan covering a week’s worth of vegan meals:




  • Breakfast: Mango and spinach smoothie made with fortified plant milk and a banana-flaxseed-walnut muffin.
  • Lunch: Baked tofu sandwich with a side of tomato salad.
  • Dinner: Vegan chili on a bed of amaranth.


  • Breakfast: Whole-grain toast with hazelnut butter, banana and a fortified plant yogurt.
  • Lunch: Tofu noodle soup with vegetables.
  • Dinner: Jacket sweet potatoes with lettuce, corn, beans, cashews and guacamole.


  • Breakfast: Vegan chickpea and onion omelet and a cappuccino made with fortified plant milk.
  • Lunch: Vegan tacos with mango-pineapple salsa.
  • Dinner: Tempeh stir-fry with bok choy and broccoli.


  • Breakfast: Spinach and scrambled tofu wrap and a glass of fortified plant milk.
  • Lunch: Spiced red lentil, tomato and kale soup with whole-grain toast and hummus.
  • Dinner: Veggie sushi rolls, miso soup, edamame and wakame salad.


Remember to vary your sources of protein and vegetables throughout the day, as each provides different vitamins and minerals that are important for your health.

BOTTOM LINE: You can eat a variety of tasty plant-based meals on a vegan diet.

Healthy Vegan Snacks

Snacks are a great way to stay energized and keep hunger at bay between meals.

Some interesting, portable vegan options include:

  • Fresh fruit with a dollop of nut butter
  • Hummus and vegetables
  • Nutritional yeast sprinkled on popcorn
  • Roasted chickpeas
  • Nut and fruit bars
  • Trail mix
  • Chia pudding
  • Homemade muffins
  • Whole-wheat pita with salsa and guacamole
  • Cereal with plant milk
  • Edamame
  • Whole-grain crackers and cashew nut spread
  • A plant-milk latte or cappuccino
  • Dried seaweed snacks

Whenever planning a vegan snack, try to opt for fiber- and protein-rich options, which can help keep hunger away.

BOTTOM LINE: These portable, fiber-rich, protein-rich vegan snacks are convenient options to help minimize hunger between meals.


The above information was taken from an article on here is a link to the full article.

Disadvantages: Vegan diets are free of meat, eggs, milk products, and all derivatives of them. While most people adjust over time, many find this quite difficult at first as it significantly restricts meal and restaurant options. As a result, grocery shopping, food prep, and cooking can be a big change and take more time. Vegans have a higher risk for certain nutrient deficiencies, such as protein, iron, zinc, and B12. However, these are not inherent problems in the diet and can be avoided with good planning and occasional supplements.

Side effects: There are no side effects to a well planned vegan diet, but this can be challenging at first. Some people feel hungry, fatigued, or lightheaded.

Mistakes: Like the vegetarian diet, a vegan diet isn’t necessarily healthy. Make sure you’re eating whole grains and healthy fats, not refined oils and carbohydrates. Not all vegan foods are low calorie, so you still need to pay attention to fat content and total caloric intake.

Tips: Get plenty of protein and micro nutrients from soy, lentils, and beans. Take a B12 supplement or drink B12-fortified soy milk.

If you are still interested in trying the vegan diet why not take the 1 month challenge.

1 Month Vegan Challenge

I hope you found this vegan diet for beginners information helpful and I wish you all the best with your new way of eating.

Leave a comment below and keep in touch and let me know how you get on.


Mediterranean turkey-stuffed peppers

This recipe serves 2 and comes in at 403 calories


  • 2 red peppers (about 220g)
  • 1 ½ tbsp olive oil, plus an extra drizzle
  • 240g lean turkey breast mince (under 8% fat)
  • ½ small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 3-4 mushrooms, sliced
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 chicken stock cube
  • handful fresh oregano leaves
  • 60g mozzarella, grated
  • 150g green vegetables (spinach, kale, broccoli, mangetout or green beans), to serve


  1. Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Halve the peppers lengthways, then remove the seeds and core but keep the stalks on. Rub the peppers with a drizzle of olive oil and season well. Put on a baking tray and roast for 15 mins.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Fry the mince for 2-3 mins, stirring to break up the chunks, then tip onto a plate.
  3. Wipe out your pan, then heat the rest of the oil over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic, stir-fry for 2-3 mins, then add the cumin and mushrooms and cook for 2-3 mins more.
  4. Tip the mince back into the pan and add the chopped tomatoes and tomato purée. Crumble in the stock cube and cook for 3-4 mins, then add the oregano and season. Remove the peppers from the oven and fill them with as much of the mince as you can. (Don’t worry if some spills out it – it will go satisfyingly crisp in the oven.) Top with the cheese and return to the oven for 10-15 mins until the cheese starts to turn golden.
  5. Carefully slide the peppers onto a plate and serve alongside a pile of your favourite greens blanched, boiled or steamed.

This recipe was found on

Mediterranean Fish Parcels

This recipe contains about 275 calories per portion and serves 2


  • 250g baby new potato  scrubbed
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 x 175g/6oz firm white fish fillets, such as haddock or whiting
  • 2 tsp sun-dried tomato paste or tomato purée
  • finely grated zest of 1 small lemon  plus 2 tsp lemon juice
  • about 10 black or green olives
  • 1 tbsp capers , rinsed
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary  or thyme


  1. Preheat the oven to fan 170C/conventional 190C/gas 5. Boil potatoes in lightly salted water for about 12 minutes or until tender, then drain well.
  2. Take 2 large sheets of foil, about 30cm square, and brush the middle area of each sheet with the olive oil. Put a fish fillet on top and spread with the tomato paste. Sprinkle with the lemon zest and juice, add the cooked potatoes, olives and capers and season with ground pepper.
  3. Lay a sprig of rosemary or thyme on top then loosely wrap and secure each parcel tightly to completely enclose the ingredients. You can prepare these up to half a day in advance and keep them in the fridge.
  4. Put the fish parcels on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the fish flakes when tested with a fork. Serve at once, with steamed green beans.

This recipe was found on


Mediterranean Diet Recipes – Kerryann’s Chilli Con Veggie

Mediterranean Diet Recipes

We continue with my mediterranean diet recipes. Today recipe is another classic from Kerryann Dunlop. It is a veggie chilli and I have made this and it is delicious as usual. Who needs all this fatty food when this tastes so good.




  • 2 medium onions
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 medium leek
  • 1 long fresh red chilli
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons ground coriander
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • ½ a cinnamon stick , or 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 whole nutmeg , for grating
  • 2 tablespoons tomato purée
  • 250 g dried green lentils
  • 250 g dried red lentils
  • 2 x 400 g tins of red kidney beans
  • 2 x 400 g tins of black beans
  • 2 x 400 g tins of chopped tomatoes
  • 1.2 litres organic vegetable stock
  1. Peel and finely chop the onions and garlic, then trim and finely chop the leek and chilli (I leave the seeds in, but deseed if you prefer), and place into your largest, heavy-based pan over a medium heat with the oil. Fry for about 5 minutes, or until softened.
  2. Add the spices, dried herbs and a good grating of nutmeg, then fry for 2 minutes – if it’s a little dry at this point, simply add a splash of water to help it out. Stir in the tomato purée and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  3. Stir in the lentils. Drain, rinse and stir in the beans, followed by the chopped tomatoes and the stock (I try to use homemade stock, but if you’ve only got stock cubes, that’s fine too).
  4. Bring it all to the boil, then reduce to a low heat and let it bubble away for at least 1 hour, or until thickened and reduced, stirring every 15 to 20 minutes, then season to how you like it.
  5. I like this with rice or on a jacket potato, scattered with coriander leaves and with lime wedges and a dollop of soured cream on the side.

Just follow the video and pause at each stage, that is how I learned to cook.

I would like to thank Kerryann for this recipe and you can get this and more in her book.

If you make this recipe, leave a comment below and let me know what you thought and how it went.


Mediterranean Diet Recipes – Roasted Vegetable Frittata

As I said in my last post I learned to cook from scratch when I was attempting to lose weight. Over the coming weeks I will be listing the Meditterranean diet recipes that I discovered on my journey. I will add a video to each post and the recipe so you can try it yourself. These are all very tasty dishes and healthy too.

The lady below was one of the first I encountered on my search for healthy recipes and she taught me how to make my first omelette. I have added a video of three ideas for omelettes at the bottom.

I soon mastered them and delicious they were too. The next step on from the omelette is the frittata of course. I have now become a bit of a master at these too and the family love them. Today we are going to look at the Roasted Vegetable Frittata. Delish.

The lady in question is Dani Spies from the Clean and Delicious website.

Roasted Vegetable Frittata




Calories: 432kcal


  • 1 red onion chopped
  • 2 bell peppers chopped (one red, one orange)
  • 1 yellow bell pepper chopped
  • 1 small zucchini chopped
  • 2 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 12 pastured eggs
  • 1/4 cup organic whole milk
  • 2 ounces goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup sliced scallions


  • Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Grease a 913 baking pan with butter, coconut oil or cooking spray.
  • Place chopped onion, peppers, zucchini, garlic in a large bowl. Drizzle with avocado oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss everything together and transfer the veggies onto a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, flipping the vegetables half way through.
  • Remove veggies from the oven and allow to cool. Reduce cooking temperature to 350 degrees farenheit.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, salt and pepper.
  • Add cooled veggies to the egg mixture and transfer into prepared pan and top with dots of goats cheese and sliced scallions.
  • Pop in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the eggs have puffed up and are set through the center. Serve and enjoy!


Calories: 432kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 226mg | Potassium: 915mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 8275IU | Vitamin C: 532.3mg | Calcium: 145mg | Iron: 2.9mg

3 Easy Omelette Ideas



Happy cooking and you can do this weight loss thing. I have faith in you.

Mediterranean Diet Recipes – Hidden Veg Pasta Sauce

In today’s Mediterranean diet recipe I will introduce you to another lady who has helped to teach me how to cook.

Her name is Kerryann Dunlop, I bring you her hidden veg pasta sauce recipe. I will list the ingredients below the video. I have made this and it is was as usual delicious.



Vegetable Stock Cube
Tomato Puree

Learn how to cook this recipe in the video above, the way I did it was watch the video through, then replay it and pause at each stage of the process. I found this was an easy way to learn.

I hope you enjoy making and eating this recipe, I know I did and the children will too, not realising how many vegetables they are eating. Sneaky.

If you make this recipe, leave a comment below and let me know what you thought. It will be great to hear from you.