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Thread: How can a vegetarian follow the Primal Blue Print?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013

    How can a vegetarian follow the Primal Blue Print?

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    Hello Everyone

    Need your help on this. I have been following MDA for the past 12 months. The following has been nagging me all along.

    I am a vegetarian (Hindu, from India). No meat/sea food/eggs. Due to family reasons don't see this changing (maybe would be able to introduce eggs). My diet is heavily focussed on carbs (Rice, vegetables, legumes, dairy etc..)

    Any suggestions or support on how I can sustain a primal blue print?

    Let me know if you need any additional information to help you with your response.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Southern California
    I am primarily vegetarian, I do eat a crap ton of eggs, though, and a lot of Greek yogurt; that's how I get most of my protein. I'm not vegetarian officially, it's just that my tastes in food runs in cycles and lately I haven't been craving much meat.
    F 28/5'4/100 lbs

    "I'm not a psychopath, I'm a high-functioning sociopath; do your research."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    A carb focus is kind of tough on primal. It'd mean a lot of starchy tubers and fruit but then you might have issues getting adequate protein. Beans aren't really the worst thing you could be eating, but they aren't recommended on the diet as a first choice for protein. Your protein, unless you could get some eggs into the diet would have to be almost ALL dairy with maybe some nuts, seeds, and the occasional dose of beans. Full fat Greek yoghurt would become a close friend to you in this style of eating, just avoid brands with added sugars. Kefir would be good too, as would small amounts of cheese on occasion. Pumpkin seeds and hemp seeds could be taken for some extra protein, like a handful every day or two.

    Meat, even for those who eat tons of veggies and fruits, is really the focal point of the diet for the quality and digestibility of their proteins. Plant sources, while maybe necessary for some, just can't hold up to the bioavailability found from animal proteins. You could do sort of a modified primal diet, easy to cut out grains and bad oils and still be vegetarian, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, and FULL fat dairy (raw if possible) for healthy fats, use butter, ghee, ect. Tubers and fruits for carbs, though primal, even for those who consume the most carbs around here, is likely WAY less than you've been consuming up to now.

    Protein is, as stated above, the real kicker. See if you can incorporate eggs into the diet (they'll become a staple if you can) and I suppose you'll almost be forced to consume dairy to get some good animal proteins so it'll be hard to experiment with dropping it any point. Oh well, make the best of things, right? Good luck!
    Last edited by Drumroll; 01-03-2013 at 03:25 AM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    I feel like you can still embrace primal living as a vegetarian. I was a junk food vegetarian for years.....
    However, I think you need to experiment and find diverse sources of protein for yourself. Diverse is the key- what can you pull from? Yogurt, paneer, maybe eggs, can you have fish? Then what can you throw in on occasion- maybe some beans?

    What can you cut out? Sugar, maybe eat less rice, skip grainy breads, eat more vegetables. More fruits. Really keep out the processed stuff.

    And make sure you look at the sleep and exercise.

    I think it is important to keep in mind that Primal is NOT ABOUT RESTRICTING CARBS. It's about avoiding toxic foods a lot of which are high in carbs. A giant plate of veggie curry with paneer served over sweet potatoes may be higher in carb than a steak and spinach but it is no less primal.
    Check out my blog. Hope to share lots of great recipes and ideas!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Dallas/Fort Worth Texas
    Another thing I think too many people overlook(including myself) is getting enough natural light, and avoiding artificial light at night. Primal is about more than food choices.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Quote Originally Posted by magnolia1973 View Post
    can you have fish?
    If I read the post right, seafood is out of the question. AND no eggs (at least for now) which ONLY leaves dairy for animal protein. Not impossible to work with, but it'll make things tough.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Birkenstocks & hairy arm pits.
    A lot of good advice here so far.

    As a reference:

    1 cup whole milk has 8 grams of protein
    1 cup whole milk yogurt has 8.5 grams of protein

    If you can add in eggs (because nothing is killed?), each large chicken egg has about 6.3 grams of protein.

    Do the best you can. Avoid chemical additives and added sugar and you're most of the way there as far as eating.

    Good luck to you!
    "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine


    Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    I too am/was a vegetarian. For over 30 years. I still have a big problem with eating meat, mostly having to do with the way it is produced in this country (US). Beyond the political and environmental reasons, I just no longer have a taste for it. I can't imagine eating a steak. That said, I have become, as someone else put it, a "junk food vegetarian." The bulk of my daily calories seems to come from bread and cheese. And beer.

    By chance I had a conversation with a guy who pointed me to Mark and his books. I had already read "Why We Get Fat" by Gary Taubes and it seemed to make a lot of sense. I had already experimented with some high protein and fat eating (with the addition of fish and turkey), and I not only lost weight but I had more energy and my ever-present joint aches subsided.

    I am by no means an evangelist for Primal, as I haven't followed it for any length of time. I am still quite conflicted about eating meat, and have limited it to turkey and fish. I eat eggs and always have. I eat full fat yogurt and even add some protein powder to it. I would like to give it a try and lose weight and feel better, but then go back to vegetarianism, without the junk.

    You did not mention your reasons for trying Primal. Perhaps more detail will help others help you. I would also be interested in their responses.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Account closed
    If meat, seafood, and eggs are precluded, that sounds like vegan + dairy pretty much? You can still apply the Primal way of eating by eliminating or greatly reducing industrial oils, sugar, and grains.

    Rice and white potatoes are something of a grey zone for many Primals, with some avoiding, and some embracing. Other diets similar to Primal (e.g. the Perfect Health Diet) actually endorse these as "safe starches."

    Problem areas might include protein and sources of B-12. You can Google vegan sources of protein, but use of nut butters and hemp seed seem to be good adds. You should definitely supplement B-12, and I would suggest supplementing K-2 as well.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Perhaps the better question to ask is: "If the dietary restrictions that my superstitions impose on me are preventing me from being as healthy as possible, is it time to ignore the superstitions and do what is best for myself"?

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