Diet Is A Four-Letter Word
|Category: Life||Mood: Productive||4:50pm Friday, May 10th, 2013|
Ever since I've switched to a mostly vegan diet, the weight has been melting off. Sticking to a mostly vegan diet has not been difficult for me at all. First I want to explain what I mean by "mostly vegan". In my day to day life, I have proclaimed that for now, I shall not eat any food derived from an animal. However, I am not telling myself that I cannot under any circumstances ever consume food derived from an animal. Case in point, I went to my nephew's birthday party a couple of weeks ago and I dipped raw vegatables in ranch dip, and ate a very small amount of cheese dip with sausage in it. I also ate one small slice of cheese pizza. I enjoyed these things very sparingly, and counted them as a luxury. I did not and do not feel guilty, and I will consume such in small amounts on special occasions in the future.
In addition, once I hit my goal weight, I will resume eating meat, but not in the same capacity as I was eating it before. I plan to eat meat approximately one meal per week. That's not to say there won't be "cheat weeks" where I eat it twice in a week, but those will surely be countered by weeks in which I skip it altogether. When I do eat meat, I will not blink at paying extra for quality meat from a butcher shop with absolutely no additives, no steroids, no antibiotics, etc. I will never again purchase meat from a supermarket or from a cheap restaurant.
However, I do not believe it is the vegan diet, per se, which is allowing me to shed pounds so quickly. Another change I've made is to almost completely avoid processed foods. Nearly everything I eat involves chopping, combining, and cooking ingredients. Any processed food I have bought has a very simple, understandable ingredient list, and I research what goes into the processing.
Consuming minimally processed foods has proven infinitely more difficult than limiting myself to a mostly vegan diet. Almost everything at the store is off-limits. I purchased some "Textured Soy Protein" at Saraga. It contains a single ingredient: "Beef flavored texturized soy protein" First, I don't think it is naturally beef flavored, so I believe some ingredients are left out. Second, before using this product, I decided to research how soy protein becomes texturized. I did not like what I found out.
It turns out, in order to make texturized soy protein, the soybeans are soaked in hexane to separate the soy fat from the soy protein. Hexane is a by-product of gasoline refining, and studies have shown that hexane residue remains in finished textured soy protein products. Further, it turns out that hexane is registered with the EPA as an air pollutant and a neurotoxin. So, I will not be consuming anything with TSP in it.
As an alternative, I've read that if you take whole, dried soybeans, soak them overnight, then dry them in the oven at 120 degrees for two hours, they shrink and turn chewy. You can then put them into a food processor or a blender and use them as a meat substitute, much the way you would use TSP. That's the way I'll be doing it, thank you very much.