Choosing a paleo lifestyle when you have opted for a vegetarian diet might seem like tricky business, especially since the paleo diet has meat and seafood as its basic ingredients. Also, given the fact that soy is not allowed on this diet that follows the food choices of our caveman ancestors, you may think that you’re rolling yourself into a real mission impossible. Rest assured, by implementing the correct lifestyle changes and food options, you can be a vegetarian on a paleo diet, and that’s not all. You will be healthier and feel fresh and even more energized with each passing day.
Assuming that you’ve been a vegetarian for quite some time, probably you’ve already started eating larger quantities of bread, pasta and other grains to compensate for the lack of filling proteins that in most part come from meat, fish and eggs. But trying to fill your belly with carbs is a big mistake, especially if you’re avoiding whole grains and eating simple carbs like white bread and pasta.
Carbs are actually raising your blood sugar levels and turning into fat cells, which eventually make you fatter. So, going carb-crazy is not the best thing that you can do. Instead, you should think of a healthier lifestyle and diet filled with fresh fruits, vegetables, eggs and hearth healthy nuts, and the good news: all of these are extremely welcomed on the paleo diet.
Protein and healthy fats rich ingredients allowed on the paleo:
These are just the basic ingredients. You can play with different types of mushrooms, try omelet or scrambled eggs, or poach them, or incorporate a handful of your favorite nuts in your lunch. The choices are literally endless, you just need some inspiration and the rest is just cooking.
Paleo diet for vegetarians
Start your day with a good breakfast with a piece of fruit and an egg dish of your choice. Try spinach and mushroom omelet, or a zucchini and herb scramble, or even a light frittata with cherry tomatoes and summer squash. Experiment all the time, so that you don’t end up having the same dish every time, because you will end up feeling bland and unsatisfied. Or go for a berry smoothie with some spinach leaves or a few carrots.
As for the lunch menu, the options are limitless. Bake some cauliflower and broccoli florets with olive oil and some fresh herbs, or grill some mushrooms with a fresh cabbage salad, or some carrot puree with roasted okras. Just be creative, if it sounds good, it will taste good. You don’t need to limit yourself to the regular meals over and over. And if you suffer from a “pasta addiction”, try this making “spaghetti” from zucchini. Several studies show that pasta is, actually, bland and that it’s the texture of the spaghetti that people like, and not the taste. So, cut the zucchini very thinly using a shredder and serve them with some tomato sauce. You may find this type of “spaghetti” strange at the beginning, but soon you’ll start enjoying them.
Cooking won’t be tricky or difficult, it’s the getting used to part that will be a bit challenging. But, you must remember at all times that as times goes by, your body will start to adapt to the no carb lifestyle, and you won’t feel any cravings at all. Don’t feel like your social life needs to suffer in order to be a vegetarian practicing the paleo lifestyle. When eating out with friend, suggest going to a restaurant that serves dishes made from fresh and organic ingredients. Order a soup or a salad and some veggies or mushrooms for the main dish. Try a Mexican restaurant and order a salad with salsa dip and avocado.
It’s very simple and easy, think of clean eating and healthy food options. Being a vegetarian on the paleo diet is quite possible; you just have to make some good food choices. Don’t feel discouraged if at first you feel strong carbs cravings, or if you find yourself binging on a muffin in 2 o’clock in the morning. Start over the next day and stay focused on your healthier lifestyle. You’ll feel the motivation in you growing stronger with each passing day.