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What is a Vegetarian Diet? 

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Becoming a vegetarian will certainly require some adjustments, but it should not be overly restrictive or boring. Many meals that typically contain meat or poultry can easily be made Vegetarian. First, we recommend going home and checking out the vegetarian-friendly protein sources that you already may have in your kitchen and pantry.


 


 

Soy Products  

SERVING

PROTEIN 

Edamame 

½ cup

8.4

Soy Milk 

1 cup

9.2

Tempeh 

½ cup

15.4

Tofu - firm 

½ cup

10.2

Legumes  

SERVING

PROTEIN 

Black Beans - cooked 

½ cup

7.6

Garbanzos (Chick Peas) - cooked 

½ cup

7.3

Kidney Beans - cooked 

½ cup

7.7

Lentils - cooked 

½ cup

8.9

Peanut Butter 

2 Tbsp

8.0

Peanuts - dry roasted 

⅓ cup

11.4

Pinto Beans - refried 

½ cup

6.4

Nuts & Seeds  

SERVING

PROTEIN 

Almonds 

¼ cup

7.6

Cashews 

¼ cup

5.2

Pecans 

¼ cup

2.3

Pistachios 

¼ cup

6.4

Pumpkin seeds - roasted 

¼ cup

8.8

Sunflower Seeds 

¼ cup

6.2

Walnuts - chopped 

¼ cup

4.5

Grains 

SERVING

PROTEIN 

Bread - whole wheat 

2 slices

7.3

Buckwheat - groats roasted 

1 cup

5.7

Corn 

1 cup

5.4

Flour Tortilla 

1 medium

4.0

Oatmeal - boiled 

1 cup

5.9

Quinoa - cooked 

1 cup

8.1

Rice - brown, medium grain 

1 cup

4.5

Seitan 

3 oz

31.0

Spaghetti - whole wheat 

1 cup

7.5

Vegetables 

SERVING

PROTEIN 

Baked Potato 

1 medium

4.3

Broccoli - cooked, chopped 

1 cup

3.6

Kale - cooked, shredded 

1 cup

2.5

Animal Products 

SERVING

PROTEIN 

Egg - hard boiled 

1 large

6.3

Milk - fat free or skim 

1 cup

8.4

Tuna 

3 oz

21.7



 
 

Grocery Shopping… 

When shopping for a vegetarian diet, opt for minimally processed foods for balanced meals and snacks, following Retrofit’s guiding principles of the 50-25-25 plate at meals and produce & protein at snacks.

1) Start your shopping trip with the fresh produce section. There are no worries in this sectionwhen shopping for non-starchy veggies! Stock up on fresh fruits and vegetables, which are naturally nutrient rich, low-fat, and low-sodium. (NOTE: This is often where you’ll also find refrigerated vegetarian products, such as tofu, cheeses, yogurts, milk-substitutes, and meatless meats.).  Some fruits can fit into your plate too within the 25% carbs section of the balanced plate.

2) If you’re thinking of including poultry or seafood in your diet, then head into the fresh meat, poultry, and seafood section. (If not, skip to #3!)

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Many grocery stores have started to stock more products that are specifi­cally vegetarian. Check out the “organic” or “health food” section for additional products. And most grocery stores typically have vegetarian foods in their frozen food section.

 


Can I enjoy eating at restaurants? 

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Before leaving home, do your homework.  Most restaurants have a website, so you can review the menu online to see if there are vegetarian options available.  Some restaurants have a Vegetarian menu to order from: Uno’s Chicago Grill, PF Chang’s, Chili’s, Chipotle, Noodle & Company, and many others.  When you are ordering, do not be afraid to ask how the food is prepared.  Be pleasant and informative, if questions arise.

 


Are all Vegetarian foods healthy? 

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·       50-25-25 Approach to Meals:

50% fruit/non-starchy vegetables

25% lean protein

25% carbs (whole grain or starch, starchy veggies, fruit, dairy)

·       Produce & Protein at Snacks:

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Protein foods include - legumes, nuts & nut butters, soy products and dairy



 
 
 

VEGETARIAN SAMPLE DAY:  


 

Breakfast:

Oatmeal with ½ cup blueberries and 2 Tbsp Sliced Almonds

 


Morning Snack:

Non-Fat Greek Yogurt and 2 Tbsp Low-Fat Granola

 


Lunch:

Southwest Salad

(Salad vegetables, ½ cup black beans, ¼ cup corn, ¼ cup salsa, and 2 Tbsp Guacamole)

 


Afternoon Snack:

100 calorie pack of Almonds and Apple

 


Dinner:

Grilled Tofu with Steamed Vegetables and Herbed Quinoa

 


Dessert (optional):

½ cup Frozen Kefir topped with ½ cup fresh berries

 

 



HELPFUL RESOURCES:
The Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics – Vegetarian Lifestyle
Choose My Plate –
 Tips for Vegetarians