Being a Vegetarian – Avoiding the Junk Food Vegetarian Trap

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 13,320
    Elizabeth Turner, Editor in Chief of Vegetarian Times magazine, discusses a junk food vegetarian, and how can you avoid falling into that common beginners trap.

    Elizabeth Turner: Hi! I am Elizabeth Turner with Vegetarian Times, and I would like to talk to you a little bit about how to avoid becoming a junk food vegetarian. Now when people first start out as vegetarians, it's very, very easy to fall into the trap of becoming a junk food vegetarian. So what does that mean; that means that you take meat off of your plate and you replace it with a whole bunch of cheese and starchy foods or all veggie burgers all the time, and that's not really where you want to go, if you want to keep it healthy. All those things are okay, but you want to do that in moderation and really think about replacing the meat in your diet with super, super nutritious whole foods. So let's talk about some things that are real mealtime NBPs for vegetarians. So here we have dried beans, which I personally prefer over canned beans, because when you cook them up, they really taste tender and great. Black beans and black eyed peas all range between 15 and 18 grams of protein for one cup serving cup, which is amazing. When you're in a bit of hurry, you can get lentil soup, like lentil soup in the box. 10 grams of protein in a serving, or you can get canned refried beans, excellent food. Another protein thing that is essential for vegetarians is the old tofu. 20 grams of proteins for half cup serving. That's a great protein food, or yogurt. Soy yogurt has about 10 grams of protein per serving; Greek yogurt, which is regular cow's milk yogurt is amazing, and has 15 grams of protein per serving. You also want to stock up on nuts and seeds. I am personally impartial to almonds. I like the unroasted unsalted kind, just a handful for snack. I take them everywhere I go. Another thing that you want to do is get a lot of whole grains. Quinoa, this is red Quinoa, It is a fantastic food for vegetarians, because it's a whole grain that's also super rich in protein. It has 6 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber. It's a champion food. Also nut butters are great. Don't just limit yourself to peanut butter. Be sure to get the natural style. and try some almond butter, try some cashew butter. They are delicious, they are great for toast, they make great sauces, they are really great thing to have in your pantry.

    And then finally the most important thing is the old fruits and vegetables, and the trick here is to get lots of greens and lots of cruciferous vegetables, which is why I have cauliflower here. The cruciferous vegetables are great for fiber and they are also loaded with antioxidants. So in the same family would be broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts. These are all foods that you should be trying to get a few of every week. And then with the rest of it, choose what you like, but just try to get a lot of color every time you go to the store.