21-Day Vegan Kickstart

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Forums: Main Kickstart Forum: Meat Substitutes
Created on: 02/01/13 10:52 PM Views: 2669 Replies: 14
Meat Substitutes
Posted Friday, February 1, 2013 at 10:52 PM

Are meat substitutes wholesome? I'm eating just about everything I used to except its not "real". I am 100% vegan-ized but worried I'm doing all this for little nutritional gain. I've been eating Gimme Lean beef flavor and Boca Burgers and chicken flavored patties. Also tofurkey, tofu and even soyrizo. Any thoughts?

Edited 02/01/13 11:19 PM
RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 12:35 AM

The meat substitutes such as Boca Burgers are ok once in a while but it's not a good idea for every meal. Check the nutritional panel on the package. Many of them are high in fat. Soyrizo is high in fat (9 grams) and sodium. At first I used more of the fake meats but when I started reading labels, I gave up most of them.

Good sources of protein to substitute for the fake meats are dried or canned red, green, or other variety lentils, kidney, pinto, garbanzo (chickpeas), black, black-eyed peas, or other variety of beans or quinoa.

www.nutritionmd.org has many bean burger recipes. I've made some and froze the extras to have on hand when I'm in a hurry. Since my son and I are the only ones following this lifestyle in my home, we usually have leftovers with the Kickstart recipes, which I don't mind at all.

Very Happy

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 6:52 AM

You really have to read the ingredients. Not all meat substitutes are vegan. Vegetarian yes, but not always vegan.

Vikki ~

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 7:25 AM

Thanks for the input. Yes. I noticed that Morningstar products (just about all if them) use egg whites so I won't eat them. Thanks again.

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 8:47 AM

Personnaly, I haven't found much among the replacement meats or cheeses that I enjoy. So much so that rather than try to replace them with a fake version, I go another way and replace the nutrients with other, but real foods. The one thing I haven't found a good replacement for is cheese. I drink and use in cooking plant milks, but no to the cheeses.

Jennifer

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 8:47 AM

Personnaly, I haven't found much among the replacement meats or cheeses that I enjoy. So much so that rather than try to replace them with a fake version, I go another way and replace the nutrients with other, but real foods. The one thing I haven't found a good replacement for is cheese. I drink and use in cooking plant milks, but no to the cheeses.

Jennifer

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 8:58 AM

Fake meat products are certainly better than animal products in terms of health risks. However, I always encourage people to try and work their way towards as much of a whole foods diet as possible. If you do not already, try making legumes a center of the plate option for several meals a week. You can even get creative and make homemade veggie burgers, for example, from beans and grains (great recipes online). I had a sweet potato and oat burger the other night - with pickles, lettuce, tomato, and mustard - it was delish!

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Saturday, February 2, 2013 at 3:01 PM

The meat replacements where I live are expensive and come in very small packs. So, our family gets them more like once or twice a week rather than once or twice a day, and in small portions.

I also cook tofu once a week and drink soy milk daily for breakfast. The others days... beans, lentils, chickpeas, and more beans! I cook up a big batch of beans early in the week and try out different recipes based around those type of beans for the whole week. (I put half of them in the freezer till I need them so they don't spoil.)

Another good meal combination would be a starch with a vegetable. Someone cooked me mashed potatoes with cauliflower the other day and it was much more filling than I would have thought.

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Monday, February 4, 2013 at 8:43 AM

dodink58 wrote:

Personnaly, I haven't found much among the replacement meats or cheeses that I enjoy. So much so that rather than try to replace them with a fake version, I go another way and replace the nutrients with other, but real foods. The one thing I haven't found a good replacement for is cheese. I drink and use in cooking plant milks, but no to the cheeses.

Jennifer

It depends on what you like cheese for - finding good slices for sandwich use, probably not so much; but, there's a good recipe for a cheesy sauce floating around here (Use the Search function to look for it) that works for mac'n'cheese, nachos, over baked potatoes (baked potato with broccoli and cheesy sauce is yummy).

--DebR

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Monday, February 4, 2013 at 10:48 PM

What is the thinking and recommendation of PCRM with regard to Isolated Soy Protein which is known by a variety of names, is formulated into related items such as Textured Vegetable Protein, and is a main ingredient in many of the meat replacement items and protein bars?

TVP is an ingredient in some of the recipes in Dr. Barnard's book on diabetes, but I have recently read in one of Dr. McDougall's books about his staunch warnings to avoid these items.

And same question about Hemp Protein, which Brendan Brazier utilizes and recommends in his books?

email
RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 6:17 AM

There is no research showing that isolated soy protein is bad for your health. However, because it is so processed, we would consider it a "transitional food" - a good product if it helps you to transition off of meat products and into more whole foods like legumes and grains.

I think hemp protein is fine. I've never seen any controversy around it.

I hope that helps!

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 12:41 PM

Thanks for the response. I am trying to find some common ground on a few of the key parameters of vegan diet among PCRM principlals.

For reference, I suggest reading the section "Fake Soy Foods Cause Harm" (not much equivocation there!) in Chapter 10, page 142, of Dr. McDougall's relatively new book The Starch Solution (2012).

email
RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 1:01 PM

I respect Dr. McDougall's opinion in the matter. And I totally agree that concentrated (isolated), excess protein in the diet is the last thing most of us need. But there is no research showing that soy consumption is harmful to human health, quite the contrary. If you have not already, check out our latest summary of the evidence with soy here: http://pcrm.org/health/health-topics/soy-and-your-health.

That being said, I do not want to encourage the consumption of anything that makes someone feel uncomfortable. So if soy products create any sort of anxiety, it's not worth it. Enjoy the scores of other beans available!

Susan Levin, MS, RD
PCRM Director of Nutrition Education

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 3:04 AM

I'm so gladd and relieved to hear that soy is not all bad...that perhaps having some each day is fine, as long as one doesn't ONLY live on soy milk, tofu and soy burgers alone! For example, having a little soy milk with my coffee and tea, and trying some tofu cream cheese with my bagel, I would think this is great for just as you mention - transitioning to veganism. It helps to make use of the products that are there, soy-based, and at least initially, taste good so it makes keeping to the vegan kickstart, easier for newbies! Smile

RE: Meat Substitutes
Posted Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 2:24 PM

Susan,once again,thank you so much for being the voice of reason! As someone who has been around this "healthier eating " world for a while, it is obvious that there are many common denominators within the leaders of the whole foods- plant based community, but also things that are disagreed on. Even on this awesome site, there are variations to the plan in some of the celebrities' recipes and tips. Most of the Drs have kind of " agreed to disagree" with encouragement to worry more about the 95% that is clear than the 5% that is not, as in the end it is the 95% that matters. The goal of any public forum such as this should be,IMHO, to put the most accurate info out there. The rest is up to us. Some will easily make the changes, but others will never make it to 100%, and that's okay. Any move in the right direction is positive. Demonizing foods that are not absolutely pure does not help those that are struggling to make better choices. I wish I could totally live on brown rice, veggies, beans, water,and 2 fruits a day, and I am closer to that than 5 years ago. But, at least for today, I will continue to enjoy my coffee, occ. wine, veggie burgers on the patio, and a salad I love that has to have veganaise in it. These are conscious choices that I make carefully, but for many just starting out its just darn hard to know what to eat. Thank you again for your perspective


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