Ultimately, weight loss for the long-term requires some short-term behavior change and healthier habit formation. That's why we created our Good Housekeeping Nutritionist Approved Emblem, which exists to help turn smart food choices into healthier eating habits. All GHNA foods and drinks make it easier to find — and eat — good-for-you foods without additional time, effort, and cost. We target the lifestyle-related factors that make healthier eating hard, and find simple but creative solutions that actually work! Look for the emblem on labels wherever you shop for food!
For even more impressive effects on body composition: aim for exercise forms which elicit a positive hormonal response. This means lifting really heavy things (strength training), or interval training. Such exercise increases levels of the sex hormone testosterone (primarily in men) as well as growth hormone. Not only do greater levels of these hormones increase your muscle mass, but they also decrease your visceral fat (belly fat) in the long term. 

Does this mean that everyone should give up all animal-derived foods in their diets? Not necessarily. Overall I believe it’s possible to be healthy as a vegetarian, or better yet a pescatarian, but for reasons I’ll explain more about below, when it comes to the pros and cons of being a vegan (meaning giving up ALL animal foods), in my opinion it’s usually not ideal.
If you want to lose weight, you’d better avoid special “low-carb” products that are full of carbs. This should be obvious, but creative marketers are doing all they can to fool you (and get your money). They will tell you that you can eat cookies, pasta, ice cream, bread and plenty of chocolate on a low-carb diet, as long as you buy their brand. They’re full of carbohydrates. Don’t be fooled.
If you eat your dinner restaurant style on your plate rather than family style, helping yourself from bowls and platters on the table, you’ll lose weight. Most of us tend to eat an average of 150 percent more calories in the evening than in the morning. You’ll avoid that now because when your plate is empty, you’re finished; there’s no reaching for seconds.
The main advantage of the low-carb diet is that it causes you to want to eat less. Even without counting calories most overweight people eat far fewer calories on low carb. Sugar and starch may increase your hunger, while avoiding them may decrease your appetite to an adequate level. If your body wants to have an appropriate number of calories you don’t need to bother counting them. Thus: Calories count, but you don’t need to count them.
Instead of piling everything on one plate, bring food to the table in individual courses. For the first two courses, bring out soup or veggies such as a green salad or the most filling fruits and vegetables. By the time you get to the more calorie-dense foods, like meat and dessert, you’ll be eating less or may already be full. Nothing wrong with leftovers!
You already know that a perfect diet doesn't exist, but many of us still can't resist the urge to kick ourselves when we indulge, eat too much, or get thrown off course from restrictive diets. The problem: This only makes it more difficult, stressful, and downright impossible to lose weight. So rather than beating yourself up for eating foods you think you shouldn't, let it go. Treating yourself to about 200 calories worth of deliciousness each day — something that feels indulgent to you — can help you stay on track for the long-haul, so allow yourself to eat, breathe, and indulge. Food should be joyful, not agonizing!
Low levels of vitamin B12 — You can only get vitamin B12 in substantial amounts by consuming meat, fish, eggs and dairy. Cutting out all of these foods can sometimes be problematic and contribute to vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms like fatigue, weakness and others. For this reason it’s recommended that all vegetarians and vegans who abstain from eating most or all animal foods take vitamin B12 supplements.
If you want to lose weight you should start by avoiding sugar and starch (like bread, pasta and potatoes). This is an old idea: For 150 years or more there have been a huge number of weight-loss diets based on eating fewer carbs. What’s new is that dozens of modern scientific studies have proven that, yes, low carb is the most effective way to lose weight.

We’ve now arrived at tip number 16. If you’re still having trouble losing weight, despite following the 15 pieces of advice listed above, it might be a good idea to bring out the heavy artillery: optimal ketosis. Many people stalling at weight plateaus while on a low-carb diet have found optimal ketosis helpful. It’s what can melt the fat off once again.
Overconsumption of carbohydrates — One of the most common trends I’ve found from working with hundreds of vegans and vegetarians is that they tend to overconsume carbohydrates and sugars. Eating too many carbs can cause candida and yeast overgrowth, along with weight gain. There are some who have been able to find better balance, but this can take a lot of work and planning.
Keep in mind that the initial weight lost on a fast is primarily fluid or "water weight," not fat. And when you go back to eating, any lost weight usually gets a return ticket back. Not only do most people regain weight lost on a fast, they tend to add a few extra pounds because a slower metabolism makes it easier to gain weight. Worse, the weight that is regained is likely to be all fat -- lost muscle has to be added back at the gym.
Chronic stress may increase levels of stress hormones such as cortisol in your body. This can cause increased hunger and result in weight gain. If you’re looking to lose weight, you should review possible ways to decrease or better handle excessive stress in your life. Although this often demands substantial changes, even altering small things – such as posture – may immediately affect your stress hormone levels, and perhaps your weight. 

1842: "To tell a healthy vegetarian that his diet is very uncongenial with the wants of his nature." (Healthian, Apr. 34) The 1839 occurrence remains under discussion; the Oxford English Dictionary's 1839 source is in fact an 1863 publication: Fanny Kemble, Journal of a Residence on a Georgian Plantation 1838–1839. The original manuscript has not been located.
To make sure you’re eating enough protein and calories in general, don’t skimp on plants that offer amino acids and healthy fats. How much protein should you aim to eat each day? While it might be possible to get away with less, I personally think it’s best to divide your body weight in half and eat about that many grams of protein per day. Some of the best plant proteins include natto, spirulina, tempeh, nutritional yeast, green peas, lentils, quinoa and amaranth.
Vitamin D2, or ergocalciferol is found in fungus (except alfalfa which is a plantae) and created from viosterol, which in turn is created when ultraviolet light activates ergosterol (which is found in fungi and named as a sterol from ergot). Any UV-irradiated fungus including yeast form vitamin D2.[107] Human bioavailability of vitamin D2 from vitamin D2-enhanced button mushrooms via UV-B irradiation is effective in improving vitamin D status and not different from a vitamin D2 supplement according to study.[108] For example, Vitamin D2 from UV-irradiated yeast baked into bread is bioavailable.[109] By visual assessment or using a chromometer, no significant discoloration of irradiated mushrooms, as measured by the degree of "whiteness", was observed[110] making it hard to discover if they have been treated without labeling. Claims have been made that a normal serving (approx. 3 oz or 1/2 cup, or 60 grams) of mushrooms treated with ultraviolet light increase their vitamin D content to levels up to 80 micrograms,[111] or 2700 IU if exposed to just 5 minutes of UV light after being harvested.[112]

All meals are important, but breakfast is what helps you start your day on the right track. The best, heartiest breakfasts are ones that will fill you up, keep you satisfied, and stave off cravings later in the day. Aim to eat anywhere between 400 and 500 calories for your morning meal, and make sure you're including a source of lean protein plus filling fat (e.g., eggs, beans, unsweetened Greek yogurt, nuts, or nut butters) and fiber (veggies, fruit, or 100% whole grains). Starting your day with a blood sugar-stabilizing blend of nutrients will help you slim down without sacrifice.
The main advantage of the low-carb diet is that it causes you to want to eat less. Even without counting calories most overweight people eat far fewer calories on low carb. Sugar and starch may increase your hunger, while avoiding them may decrease your appetite to an adequate level. If your body wants to have an appropriate number of calories you don’t need to bother counting them. Thus: Calories count, but you don’t need to count them.
Individuals sometimes label themselves "vegetarian" while practicing a semi-vegetarian diet,[9][42][43] as some dictionary definitions describe vegetarianism as sometimes including the consumption of fish,[8] or only include mammalian flesh as part of their definition of meat,[8][44] while other definitions exclude fish and all animal flesh.[11] In other cases, individuals may describe themselves as "flexitarian".[42][45] These diets may be followed by those who reduce animal flesh consumed as a way of transitioning to a complete vegetarian diet or for health, ethical, environmental, or other reasons. Semi-vegetarian diets include:

^ Crissey SD, Ange KD, Jacobsen KL, Slifka KA, Bowen PE, Stacewicz-Sapuntzakis M, Langman CB, Sadler W, Kahn S, Ward A (2003). "Serum concentrations of lipids, vitamin D metabolites, retinol, retinyl esters, tocopherols and selected carotenoids in twelve captive wild felid species at four zoos". The Journal of Nutrition. 133 (1): 160–6. doi:10.1093/jn/133.1.160. PMID 12514284.


"Amritdharis" that belong to some Sikh sects (e.g. Akhand Kirtani Jatha, Damdami Taksal, Namdhari[202] and Rarionwalay,[203] etc.) are vehemently against the consumption of meat and eggs (though they do consume and encourage the consumption of milk, butter and cheese).[204] This vegetarian stance has been traced back to the times of the British Raj, with the advent of many new Vaishnava converts.[200] In response to the varying views on diet throughout the Sikh population, Sikh Gurus have sought to clarify the Sikh view on diet, stressing their preference only for simplicity of diet. Guru Nanak said that over-consumption of food (Lobh, Greed) involves a drain on the Earth's resources and thus on life.[205][206] Passages from the Guru Granth Sahib (the holy book of Sikhs, also known as the Adi Granth) say that it is "foolish" to argue for the superiority of animal life, because though all life is related, only human life carries more importance: "Only fools argue whether to eat meat or not. Who can define what is meat and what is not meat? Who knows where the sin lies, being a vegetarian or a non-vegetarian?"[200] The Sikh langar, or free temple meal, is largely lacto-vegetarian, though this is understood to be a result of efforts to present a meal that is respectful of the diets of any person who would wish to dine, rather than out of dogma.[199][200]
THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

All meals are important, but breakfast is what helps you start your day on the right track. The best, heartiest breakfasts are ones that will fill you up, keep you satisfied, and stave off cravings later in the day. Aim to eat anywhere between 400 and 500 calories for your morning meal, and make sure you're including a source of lean protein plus filling fat (e.g., eggs, beans, unsweetened Greek yogurt, nuts, or nut butters) and fiber (veggies, fruit, or 100% whole grains). Starting your day with a blood sugar-stabilizing blend of nutrients will help you slim down without sacrifice.
All meals are important, but breakfast is what helps you start your day on the right track. The best, heartiest breakfasts are ones that will fill you up, keep you satisfied, and stave off cravings later in the day. Aim to eat anywhere between 400 and 500 calories for your morning meal, and make sure you're including a source of lean protein plus filling fat (e.g., eggs, beans, unsweetened Greek yogurt, nuts, or nut butters) and fiber (veggies, fruit, or 100% whole grains). Starting your day with a blood sugar-stabilizing blend of nutrients will help you slim down without sacrifice.
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American Vegetarian Party Boston Vegetarian Society Christian Vegetarian Association European Vegetarian Union Happidog Hare Krishna Food for Life International Vegetarian Union Jewish Veg Linda McCartney Foods Meat-free days Meatless Monday Friday Fast Swissveg Toronto Vegetarian Association Vegetarian Society Vegetarian Society (Singapore) Veggie Pride Viva! Health World Esperantist Vegetarian Association World Vegetarian Day
Side effects of fasting include dizziness, headaches, low blood sugar, muscle aches, weakness, and fatigue. Prolonged fasting can lead to anemia, a weakened immune system, liver and kidney problems, and irregular heartbeat. Fasting can also result in vitamin and mineral deficiencies, muscle breakdown, and diarrhea. When you drink laxative concoctions during a fast, there is an increased risk of fluid imbalance and dehydration.
A 2012 study also showed that people on a low-carb diet burned 300 more calories a day – while resting! According to one of the Harvard professors behind the study this advantage “would equal the number of calories typically burned in an hour of moderate-intensity physical activity”. Imagine that: an entire bonus hour of exercise every day, without actually exercising. A later, even larger and more carefully conducted study confirmed the effect, with different groups of people on low-carb diets burning an average of between 200 and almost 500 extra calories per day.

To make sure you’re eating enough protein and calories in general, don’t skimp on plants that offer amino acids and healthy fats. How much protein should you aim to eat each day? While it might be possible to get away with less, I personally think it’s best to divide your body weight in half and eat about that many grams of protein per day. Some of the best plant proteins include natto, spirulina, tempeh, nutritional yeast, green peas, lentils, quinoa and amaranth.
You’ve heard of a self-fulfilling prophecy? If you keep focusing on things you can’t do, like resisting junk food or getting out the door for a daily walk, chances are you won’t do them. Instead (whether you believe it or not) repeat positive thoughts to yourself. “I can lose weight.” “I will get out for my walk today.” “I know I can resist the pastry cart after dinner.” Repeat these phrases and before too long, they will become true for you.

The scale is not necessarily your friend. You may want to lose fat – but the scale measures muscles, bone and internal organs as well. Gaining muscle is a good thing. Thus weight or BMI are imperfect ways to measure your progress. This is especially true if you’re just coming off a long period of semi-starvation (calorie counting), as your body may want to restore lost muscles etc. Starting weight training and gaining muscle can also hide your fat loss.


You’re more likely to eat more—and eat more high-fat, high-calorie foods—when you eat out than when you eat at home. Restaurants today serve such large portions that many have switched to larger plates and tables to accommodate them. You’ll gasp when you see just how bad the unhealthiest restaurant meals in America are. Don’t miss these 9 ways your kitchen setup can help you lose weight.
^ Jump up to: a b c Forrest, Jamie (December 18, 2007). "Is Cheese Vegetarian?". Serious Cheese. Serious Eats. Archived from the original on March 18, 2018. Retrieved March 18, 2018. Some vegetarians are OK eating cheeses made with animal rennet, but many will seek out ones made with vegetarian rennet, especially since the latter are quite prevalent nowadays.
For even more impressive effects on body composition: aim for exercise forms which elicit a positive hormonal response. This means lifting really heavy things (strength training), or interval training. Such exercise increases levels of the sex hormone testosterone (primarily in men) as well as growth hormone. Not only do greater levels of these hormones increase your muscle mass, but they also decrease your visceral fat (belly fat) in the long term.
Some groups, such as PETA, promote vegetarianism as a way to offset poor treatment and working conditions of workers in the contemporary meat industry.[213] These groups cite studies showing the psychological damage caused by working in the meat industry, especially in factory and industrialised settings, and argue that the meat industry violates its labourers' human rights by assigning difficult and distressing tasks without adequate counselling, training and debriefing.[214][215][216] However, the working conditions of agricultural workers as a whole, particularly non-permanent workers, remain poor and well below conditions prevailing in other economic sectors.[217] Accidents, including pesticide poisoning, among farmers and plantation workers contribute to increased health risks, including increased mortality.[218] According to the International Labour Organization, agriculture is one of the three most dangerous jobs in the world.[219]
Vitamin D2, or ergocalciferol is found in fungus (except alfalfa which is a plantae) and created from viosterol, which in turn is created when ultraviolet light activates ergosterol (which is found in fungi and named as a sterol from ergot). Any UV-irradiated fungus including yeast form vitamin D2.[107] Human bioavailability of vitamin D2 from vitamin D2-enhanced button mushrooms via UV-B irradiation is effective in improving vitamin D status and not different from a vitamin D2 supplement according to study.[108] For example, Vitamin D2 from UV-irradiated yeast baked into bread is bioavailable.[109] By visual assessment or using a chromometer, no significant discoloration of irradiated mushrooms, as measured by the degree of "whiteness", was observed[110] making it hard to discover if they have been treated without labeling. Claims have been made that a normal serving (approx. 3 oz or 1/2 cup, or 60 grams) of mushrooms treated with ultraviolet light increase their vitamin D content to levels up to 80 micrograms,[111] or 2700 IU if exposed to just 5 minutes of UV light after being harvested.[112]

^ Jump up to: a b c Davis, John. "History of Vegetarianism: Extracts from some journals 1842–48 – the earliest known uses of the word 'vegetarian'". International Vegetarian Union. Archived from the original on March 18, 2018. Retrieved March 18, 2018. In 1841 the [Alcott House] was re-invented as A Concordium, or Industry Harmony College though the building remained 'Alcott House'. Also in 1841 they began printing and publishing their own pamphlets, which now seem to be lost, but we have the relevant extracts, with the earliest known use of 'vegetarian', from their first journal which began in December 1841[.]
A vegetarian is someone who lives on a diet of grains, pulses, legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, fungi, algae, yeast and/or some other non-animal-based foods (e.g. salt) with, or without, dairy products, honey and/or eggs. A vegetarian does not eat foods that consist of, or have been produced with the aid of products consisting of or created from, any part of the body of a living or dead animal. This includes meat, poultry, fish, shellfish*, insects, by-products of slaughter** or any food made with processing aids created from these.
^ Davis, John (June 1, 2011). "The Vegetus Myth". VegSource. Archived from the original on March 18, 2018. Retrieved March 18, 2018. Vegetarian can equally be seen as derived from the late Latin 'vegetabile' – meaning plant – as in Regnum Vegetabile / Plant Kingdom. Hence vegetable, vegetation – and vegetarian. Though others suggest that 'vegetable' itself is derived from 'vegetus'. But it's very unlikely that the originators went through all that either – they really did just join 'vegetable+arian', as the dictionaries have said all along.
It's a one-time investment you'll never regret. Here's why: Strength training builds lean muscle tissue, which burns more calories — at work or at rest — 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The more lean muscle you have, the faster you'll slim down. How do you start strength training? Try some push-ups or a few squats or lunges. Use your free weights to perform simple bicep curls or tricep pulls right in your home or office. Do these exercises three to four times per week, and you'll soon see a rapid improvement in your physique.
Side effects of fasting include dizziness, headaches, low blood sugar, muscle aches, weakness, and fatigue. Prolonged fasting can lead to anemia, a weakened immune system, liver and kidney problems, and irregular heartbeat. Fasting can also result in vitamin and mineral deficiencies, muscle breakdown, and diarrhea. When you drink laxative concoctions during a fast, there is an increased risk of fluid imbalance and dehydration.

Non-dairy milks that are fortified with calcium, such as soymilk and almond milk can also contribute a significant amount of calcium in the diet.[100] The calcium found in broccoli, bok choy, and kale have also been found to have calcium that is well absorbed in the body.[98][99][101] Though the calcium content per serving is lower in these vegetables than a glass of milk, the absorption of the calcium into the body is higher.[99][101] Other foods that contain calcium include calcium-set tofu, blackstrap molasses, turnip greens, mustard greens, soybeans, tempeh, almonds, okra, dried figs, and tahini.[98][100] Though calcium can be found in Spinach, swiss chard, beans and beet greens, they are generally not considered to be a good source since the calcium binds to oxalic acid and is poorly absorbed into the body.[99] Phytic acid found in nuts, seeds, and beans may also impact calcium absorption rates.[99] See the National Institutes of Health Office of Dietary Supplements for calcium needs for various ages,[99] the Vegetarian Resource Group[100] and the Vegetarian Nutrition Calcium Fact Sheet from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics[98] for more specifics on how to obtain adequate calcium intake on a vegetarian or vegan diet.
Make sure that everything you're eating is whole — as in nothing processed or packaged. Since salt is a preservative, these are the foods that are highest in sodium — something to keep in mind when planning your meals. Plan on making sure that all items you choose are fresh. That means filling up on fresh fruits and veggies, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean protein.
Calcium helps build and maintain strong teeth and bones. Milk and dairy foods are highest in calcium. However, dark green vegetables, such as turnip and collard greens, kale, and broccoli, are good plant sources when eaten in sufficient quantities. Calcium-enriched and fortified products, including juices, cereals, soy milk, soy yogurt and tofu, are other options.
All meals are important, but breakfast is what helps you start your day on the right track. The best, heartiest breakfasts are ones that will fill you up, keep you satisfied, and stave off cravings later in the day. Aim to eat anywhere between 400 and 500 calories for your morning meal, and make sure you're including a source of lean protein plus filling fat (e.g., eggs, beans, unsweetened Greek yogurt, nuts, or nut butters) and fiber (veggies, fruit, or 100% whole grains). Starting your day with a blood sugar-stabilizing blend of nutrients will help you slim down without sacrifice.
The final possible culprit behind stubborn weight issues may be the stress hormone, cortisol. Too much cortisol will increase hunger levels, bringing along subsequent weight gain. The most common cause of elevated cortisol is chronic stress and lack of sleep (see tip #10), or cortisone medication (tip #9). It’s a good idea to try your best to do something about this.
Chronic stress may increase levels of stress hormones such as cortisol in your body. This can cause increased hunger and result in weight gain. If you’re looking to lose weight, you should review possible ways to decrease or better handle excessive stress in your life. Although this often demands substantial changes, even altering small things – such as posture – may immediately affect your stress hormone levels, and perhaps your weight.

It's a one-time investment you'll never regret. Here's why: Strength training builds lean muscle tissue, which burns more calories — at work or at rest — 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The more lean muscle you have, the faster you'll slim down. How do you start strength training? Try some push-ups or a few squats or lunges. Use your free weights to perform simple bicep curls or tricep pulls right in your home or office. Do these exercises three to four times per week, and you'll soon see a rapid improvement in your physique.
The simplest definition of vegetarianism is a diet free of meat, fish, and fowl flesh. But eating habits of vegetarians cover a wide spectrum. At one end are lacto-ovo vegetarians, who avoid animal flesh but eat eggs and milk products. At the other end are vegans, who forgo eating (and often wearing) all animal-based products, including honey. Raw foodists are vegans who eat mainly raw fruits, vegetables, legumes, sprouts, and nuts.

It’s stunning how often we eat out of boredom, nervousness, habit, or frustration—so often, in fact, that many of us have actually forgotten what physical hunger feels like. If you’re hankering for a specific food, it’s probably a craving, not hunger. If you’d eat anything you could get your hands on, chances are you’re truly hungry. Learn how to recognize these feelings mistaken for hunger, then find ways other than eating to express love, tame stress, and relieve boredom. But talk to your doctor if you think you’re always hungry for a medical reason. Here are 10 medical reasons you might be hungry.
The final possible culprit behind stubborn weight issues may be the stress hormone, cortisol. Too much cortisol will increase hunger levels, bringing along subsequent weight gain. The most common cause of elevated cortisol is chronic stress and lack of sleep (see tip #10), or cortisone medication (tip #9). It’s a good idea to try your best to do something about this.
^ P Urbain; F Singler; G Ihorst; H-K Biesalski; H Bertz (May 4, 2011). "Bioavailability of vitamin D2 from UV-B-irradiated button mushrooms in healthy adults deficient in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D: a randomized controlled trial". European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 65 (8): 965–971. doi:10.1038/ejcn.2011.53. PMID 21540874. Retrieved January 8, 2016.

People who eat a high amount of vegetables and fruit daily tend to have the best protection against weight gain as they age. Because plant-based foods like fresh veggies and fruit are very low in calories yet are high in terms of volume and therefore take up lots of room in your stomach, they are filling and keep you from over-eating. Plant-based (or “mostly plant-based”) diets are tied to a lowered risk for obesity, lower BMI status and reduced complications related to obesity, such as heart problems or metabolic syndrome. (6)
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