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Zone Diet Vegetarian is Possible

If you heard about Zone Diet and you’re a practicing vegetarian, you might have chalked it up as a non-vegetarian friendly diet. It’s easy to have this assumption, what with its advocacy of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, and 30% fats as the ideal daily diet.

However, did you know that you can still go on the Zone Diet and still practice the vegetarian way of eating? Dr. Barry Sears, developer of the Zone Diet, says vegetarians can still apply the Zone Diet by having a daily intake of 40% carbohydrates, 30% vegetal protein, and 30% monounsaturated fat.

In fact, Dr. Sears published a Zone Diet book for vegetarians called “The Soy Zone,” in which he established soy products as the main source of protein for vegetarians who want to go on the Zone Diet.

In the book, Dr. Sears theorizes that vegetarians mainly eat carbohydrates, and that their diet is unbalanced. Though vegetarians do not eat meat, they still gain fat caused by a high level of insulin that brings about fat storage.

The solution to fat storage caused by diets high in carbohydrates is to replace some of them with protein from vegetables, but there are some vegetables that are sources of both protein and carbohydrates, such as green beans.

Because of this, Dr. Sears advises that vegetarians have to be careful in counting the food blocks, as they have to consider some vegetables to be both sources of carbohydrates and protein.

In light of Dr. Sears’ new book aimed at vegetarians, there are certified nutritionists who say that a vegetarian zone diet does not give enough vitamins such as A, B3, B6, B12, D, and E. It also lacks important minerals such as iron, calcium, chromium, selenium, and zinc. They strongly advise vegetarians who are on the zone diet to take vitamin and mineral supplements to provide them the nourishment the body requires.

Vegetarians also have their say about the vegetarian zone diet. Regular vegetarians say that the real problem for them is not high carbohydrate intake, but just bad eating habits and too much food. On the other hand, vegetarians on the zone diet agree with Dr. Sears’ theory.

Recommendation for Zone Diet Vegetarian

If you want to give vegetarian Zone Diet a try, here are the top recommended sources of vegetal protein:

  • Tofu
  • Soy bean protein powder
  • Soy-based products
  • Eggs
  • Cheese
  • Nuts
  • Nut butters
  • Meat substitutes (seitan, tempah, vegetable protein)

We follow different diets for equally different reasons. There are those of us who want to lose weight because of the health risks of being overweight or being obese. There are those of us who have different beliefs in food. There are also those who just want good nutrition for themselves. Then, there are those who want both good nutrition and to lose weight.

Whatever diet we choose, we must not forget that no matter how little or how much calories we take in, what’s really important is if we meet the requirements of our bodies for vitamin and mineral intake. We need carbohydrates for energy, but we need vitamins and minerals for our body parts and senses to function well. We need nourishment to maintain our eyes, brains, teeth, and bones. They’re most important for us to enjoy our lives fully. If we fail to take care of them, there’s no amount of diets in the world that can bring them back to their optimum condition.


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