21-Day Vegan Kickstart

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Forums: Main Kickstart Forum: Plant-based fats question
Created on: 03/05/13 09:08 AM Views: 936 Replies: 3
Plant-based fats question
Posted Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at 9:08 AM

I'm brand new to the vegan kickstart program. Where do avacados, nuts, and seeds fit into Dr. Barnard's low fat lifestyle? Are they allowed and if so, in what suggested quantities? Thanks for the help.

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RE: Plant-based fats question
Posted Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at 9:18 AM

It depends on your goals - weight loss? disease prevention? cancer survival? general health and well being?

Here's our general advice with high-fat plant foods:

A low-fat diet is not a no-fat diet. There are traces of natural oils in vegetables, beans, and fruits, and these fats are important for health. Some people add additional sources of healthful omega-3 (“good”) fats, such as walnuts, flaxseeds or flax oil, or soy products. And some researchers have found health benefits to having a small serving of nuts each day, despite the fact that nuts are very fatty. The idea is that nuts are heart-healthy and may even prevent arrhythmias—disorders of the heartbeat.

PCRM’s advice is to be cautious with these foods. They can easily impart enough fat to bring your weight loss to a halt. Rather than using nuts and seeds as snack foods (where it is so easy to go overboard), use them as condiments or in sauces, limiting them to about an ounce or so (about one modest handful) each day.

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: Plant-based fats question
Posted Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at 9:28 AM

Thanks for your help. My answer to your question is "all of the above." I do need to lose about 25 lbs and certainly I'm pursuing the vegan lifestyle for optimum health and vitality. So being a little more specific, if you don't mind the advice, I normally start my day with a hemp shake to which I add about a Tbs. of ground chia seeds. And my husband and I often split an avacado on our dinner salad. Is that too much fat in a day for my goals? Thanks again for any direction you can give. We eat nuts sparingly already.

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RE: Plant-based fats question
Posted Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at 9:38 AM

The easiest measurable goal is probably weight loss. So if you are not trending toward weight loss week to week (maybe you are, and all's well), then you might want to forgo one or two of those high-fat options. At least for a little while, to see if you then start to move in the right direction.

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education


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