Vegetarian Regret

OK, so this isn’t quite as deep as the topics I’ve been addressing so far. But I’ve got a question.

So, I was vegetarian for 7 years. Then I got pregnant with my daughter and needed rotisserie chicken (it was the only thing that helped the morning sickness). Four years later, pregnant with my son, I added red meat back into my diet. This kid loved steak, from what I could tell. Now I want to go back to a vegetarian diet, but I’m having a problem. In the intervening years, I’ve discovered I have a sensitivity to gluten and dairy. When I was vegetarian before, I depended heavily on both. Now, I eat a vegan dinner (bok choy, tofu, 100% buckwheat soba, shiitaki mushrooms, carrots), and I’m starving an hour later. I have a desire to move back towards a more veg diet, for health reasons, environmental reasons, and ethical reasons, but I can’t handle feeling hungry like this. I don’t like admitting this because when I was vegetarian, I used to make fun of people who said they had to eat meat to feel full. But hey, I am what I am.

Vegans and vegetarians out there…are you always hungry? Or if I stick with the veg thing long enough will I stop feeling so hungry after I eat?

5 comments

  1. brittany · July 25, 2010

    That’s what I thought of when I read this – coconut milk, maybe? I have a recipe for peanut sauce which is just as good made with almond butter, too.

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  2. CJ · July 25, 2010

    Interesting point, Lea. I do find that I don’t need a lot of meat to continue to feel full. I’ve always thought it was a protein issue, but I wonder if it could be a fat issue, too, since my vegan meals are mostly very low in fat. Maybe I could try including some plant sources of fat (nuts, avocado, seeds, flax oil, etc) and see if that helps keep me from feeling hungry so soon.

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  3. Lea · July 25, 2010

    When I eat vegetarian, I have to eat more to stay full. It also helps, if we’re not going to eat meat, to eat a rather large salad with the meal. I’ve also found that adding as little as 2 ounces of grilled chicken to a salad is enough to keep me full. So maybe you don’t have to go back to eating a ton of meat, maybe just an ounce or two. Or, if you haven’t tried them, I love mung beans – you could incorporate those into your Asian-style meals to get the protein you’re missing otherwise.

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  4. Heidi Lewis · July 23, 2010

    I am not vegetarian but I have a friend that was for many years and she was very physically active and said she was hungry and tired alot and didn’t eat meat. She since made the decision to eat meat again and feels much better. I don’t think every one can handle the lack of animal protein.

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  5. Lisa Sylvester · July 22, 2010

    I have the same problem when I eat vegan (at least I used to…I haven’t eaten a vegan meal for a long time). Also, instead of just feeling hungry, I crave sugar. When eat meat, I don’t have to think about food all day long. I’m pretty sure my body needs meat.

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