21-Day Vegan Kickstart

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Forums: Main Kickstart Forum: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Created on: 06/23/13 08:51 PM Views: 2068 Replies: 7
omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Sunday, June 23, 2013 at 8:51 PM

I've been absent for awhile, still wanting to get back on the vegan kickstart! I hope I can make July THE month, but even start right now - there's no such thing as 'too early' for this, right? =)

Mainly I want to work on my overall nutrition. I recently got blood drawn and tests indicated low white blood cell count. I do think it's simply a matter of overall nutrition and needing to improve this. the doctor was telling me, how much I should start eating fish and seafood.

I see a product called 'surimi' here, as well, that I believe originated in Japan.

- It is also called imitation crab meat, but is this similar to the 'fake' meats made of soy? Is it suitable for ppl like us??

- If I do not want to give in to these doctors and people who keep saying 'eat your fish and seafood' for omega acids, how can I get these? I am allergic to tree nuts so walnuts are out =/ but I love peanuts, which obviously are not nuts!

- I've been having a hard time stomaching soy milk..and obviously almond and coconut are not options. If I get the milk labeled as 'lactose-free' milk, is this still a vegan option?

RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Sunday, June 23, 2013 at 9:33 PM

I'm not 100% certain, but I believe fake crab meat is actually made of white fish, which would make it non-vegan. I used to purchase it occasionally before I started on this program.


RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Monday, June 24, 2013 at 6:19 AM

Most fake crab meat is made from other fish parts. And there are plenty of other ways to get your essential fats, most notably in your plant foods. They naturally occur in the perfect ratios too!

Almond milk is actually very low in fat, so don't be afraid of almond milk.

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Monday, June 24, 2013 at 8:25 AM

I was reading Michael Pollen's book "In Defense of Food" and he was saying that we have an omega 3 deficiency in our American Diet because of the processing of foods. Omega 3 is not a stable oil on its own, while Omega 6 is more stable and is used in over processed foods. When we process foods and add chemical or nutrients back in, our bodies no longer recognize the food we are eating. The problem with omega 3 and omega 6 oils is the imbalance between the two, which is why the doctor wants you to increase your omega 3 oil. That being said, a vegan diet does not produce this imbalance as long as the majority of your food is not processed. Omega acids are in balance in non-processed plant foods. I choose whole foods, the closest they are to looking like they came out of the ground the better. I hope this helps. Education is key to understanding our medical system.
I have a soy/nut milk maker and there are many recipes for non-dairy milk. I have made rice, oat, mung bean and mixtures of different grains and beans. Mung bean milk is tasty but it does have a slightly green tint to it and might turn some people off. I make it fun and exciting.

RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Monday, June 24, 2013 at 8:34 AM

No, lactose free milk is still from cows and then processed to break down the milk sugar (lactose). It is not vegan at all.

Fake crabmeat is other fish formed, flavored, colored to look like crabmeat. again, not vegan.

You might look for things like oat, rice or hemp milk if nut milks are out. If we couldn't do almond milk, rice would be our second choice.

As was mentioned, the major problem most people have is the unbalanced omega 3:6 levels. Once you drop off a lot of the processed, high omega 6 foods, the balance will adjust itself a little better. And, too, the reason fish have a healthier balance is what they eat - skip the fish and go right for the nori and other edible sea plants - those are vegan.


RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Tuesday, June 25, 2013 at 7:28 PM

wow - thanks so much for this information you all!
Haha, it's amazing how little people really know about veganism! So many people think that for example, lactose-free anything = vegan friendly.

Yes, due to the nut allergy I avoid all almonds but I do recall great things being said about hemp.

so for protein, is peanut butter still a good source? I'm excited as i have been out of the US for about 3 months (was in Japan and it is so hard to be vegetarian let alone vegan here!) and come back to all these new varieties of nut butters. If anyone has a favourite, would love to know! Smile

RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at 8:24 AM

All nuts have protein, but they are also higher in fat. Beans and legumes are good sources of protein and not high in fat content and do have lots of good fiber as well. Quinoa is also a good source of low fat protein, and it's a grain not a bean/legume. If, however, you need higher fat (nursing moms, athletes that train heavily and need LOTS of calories), then nut butters are great. As far as favorites, it depends on the application - PB is our go to for homemade granola bars (and hubby and growing 15 yr old son put PB in their oatmeal); cashew butter goes into a not-cheese sauce that is awesome for mac & cheese or nachos; almond butter is around sometimes; and tahini goes into hummus (technically it's a seed butter I suppose).


RE: omegas and non-dairy milk?
Posted Thursday, June 27, 2013 at 2:14 PM

I really love the variety a vegan diet gives me. I eat more now than I ever have before and maintain my weight. After years of really trying to lose weight. This is awesome.
I thought I was the only one that used PB in their oatmeal. PB has become my new butter, love it on toast!

Edited 06/27/13 2:17 PM

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