Vegan Diet Plan For Weight Loss
Facts, What to Eat & What to Avoid

Vegan Diet Plan for weight loss

Living a healthy vegan lifestyle is becoming easier than ever. But when it comes to vegan weight loss plans, there’s a lot of misinformation and bad advice being circulated. 

If done properly, being a vegan or vegetarian is a fantastic health decision. But with the wrong methods, you can actually cause harm to your body in the long term. 

Before you use veganism to lose weight, read through this Veganism 101 masterclass that includes a plant-based diet plan as well as some basic information on getting started.

I’ll walk you through everything from safe calorie counting, answer some FAQs, and give you a healthy vegan meal plan on exactly what to eat.

Healthy eating is easy if you focus on plant-based foods. 

How ​Vegan Meal Plans Work for Weight Loss

Weight loss can be boiled down to a game of numbers.

So long as you burn more calories than you take in, you will shed those pounds.

Burning calories doesn’t need to be exercise, because your body is always expending calories, even while at rest.

To figure out how many calories you burn at rest, you can use a Total Daily Energy Expenditure (TDEE) calculator. 

To break down your caloric needs intro macronutrients (fat, protein, and carbs), this macro calculator will give you a few numbers. 

vegan meal plan

The Two Factors That Are Most Important In Dieting Are:

  • Basal metabolic rate (BMR)
  • The number that best reflects your activity level (ranges from sedentary to athlete)

From these numbers, you can decide on a manageable calorie deficit that lets you shed pounds while staying healthy.

When tracking your meals and calorie intake, I’d recommend using MyFitnessPal. It’s a user-friendly weight loss tool, and has a collection of standard items in their database.

It also has a barcode scanner that simplifies uploading new food.

The recipes for the vegan meal plans we’ll be providing is a 500 calorie deficit, based on needing 2000 calories a day – making the total daily intake 1500 calories.​

​However, this particular plan may need to be tweaked depending on your activity levels, weight loss goals, and any health constraints.

7-Day Vegan Diet Plan

For the recipes in this vegan meal plan, you will need: 

  • Fruits (like avocados and bananas)
  • berries
  • check
    almond milk 
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    spinach, 
  • check
    eggplant, 
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    mushroom, 
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    lentil pasta, 
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    oatmeal, 
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    whole wheat bread
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    cucumber 
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    sweet potatoes 
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    Tofu
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    green beans
  • edamame
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    onion 
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    garlic
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    peppers
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    rice
  • check
    black beans 
  • check
    leafy greens
  • check
    tahini
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    hummus 
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    kale 
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    coconut water

If you have trouble keeping things fresh, frozen options are fine. There is no evidence that shows frozen vegetables are less nutritious than fresh ones.

Day 1 - Total Calories: 1,508

Notes: Make enough of the dinner pasta for Day 3. If you need to soak beans for the rice on Day 2, start today.

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Pasta


1 serving eggplant and mushroom
red lentil rotini pasta with green beans

534 calories, 81.4g carbs, 14.4g fat, 26.6g protein

Day 2 - Total Calories: 1,480

Notes: Prepare enough rice and beans for Day 4 and Day 6 as well.

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Mango smoothie


Granola and mango smoothie

308 calories, 55g carbs, 7.8g fat, 7.6g protein

Day 3 - Total Calories: 1,484

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Pasta


1 serving eggplant and mushroom
red lentil rotini pasta with green beans

534 calories, 81.4g carbs, 14.4g fat, 26.6g protein

Day 4 - Total Calories: 1,585

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
kale smoothie


2 servings of smoothie: kale,
frozen berries, coconut water

308 calories, 71.8g carbs, 2.4g fat, 9.6g protein

Day 5 - Total Calories: 1,517

Note: Make enough lentil and sweet potato lunch to last for Day 7. Make enough tofu scramble for Day 7.

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
vegan weight loss meal


Tofu scramble with mixed vegetables
black beans, and seasoning

541 calories, 12.9 carbs, 7.1g fat, 43.3g protein

Day 6 - Total Calories: 1,577

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
salted edamame


1 cup black beans and rice cooked
with onion, garlic, and veggie broth

2 servings on salted edamame

1 serving cucumber and hummus

772 calories: 90.6g carbs, 23.2g fat, 44.8 protein

Day 7 - Total Calories: 1,495

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • SMALL SNACK


If you’re craving a small snack, here are some options:

  • 1 banana (105 calories, 27g carbs, 0.4g fat, 1.3g protein)
  • ½ cup of cashews (359 calories, 19.5g carbs, 28.5g fat, 12g protein)
  • 1 cup of carrots (86 calories, 20.3g carbs, 0.3g fat, 1.6g protein)
  • check
    1 serving peanut butter and celery (209 calories, 10.7g carbs, 16.2g fat, 8.6g protein)
  • check
    Berry banana soy milk smoothie (261 calories, 52.8g carbs, 3.5g fat, 9.2g protein)

If you decide to snack, be sure to adjust the meals that follow so you maintain a 500 calorie deficit.

Vegan Meal Plans: The Pros and Cons

Pros: Research published by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition says, “Vegan diets tend to contain less saturated fat and cholesterol and more dietary fiber.

Vegans tend to be thinner, have lower serum cholesterol, and lower blood pressure, reducing their risk of heart disease (1).” 

Cons: A well-balanced plant-based diet will meet the nutritional needs of most individuals. However, to stay healthy, people on vegan meal plans need to be watchful of their micro nutrients.

The good news here is that there are vegan meal plans that include these nutrients. 

pros and cons of vegan meal plans

The most important nutrients you may miss on a plant-based diet meal plan include:

  • Vitamin B12: This nutrient keeps the body healthy by developing red-blood cells and keeping the nervous system functioning normally. Vegans should be sure to consume fortified foods, such as soy milk or certain breakfast cereals. Another option is to take a daily or weekly supplement. Supplements can be found at most grocery stores or pharmacies (2).
  • Vitamin D: This vitamin promotes bone growth, primarily through absorbing calcium (because your body needs vitamin D to absorb calcium). You can get most of the quantity you need through a few hours of exposure of sun during the week. Healthy and vegan options for vitamin D include mushrooms and fortified products like tofu and almond milk.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: This nutrient is important to prevent and manage heart complications. Although it’s also known as fish oil, there are plenty of vegan options - including brussel sprouts, flaxseeds, and walnuts.
  • check
    Calcium: This micronutrient helps keeps our bones and teeth healthy, as well as regulates our heartbeats and prevents blood clots. Vegan calcium choices include tahini, broccoli, kale, and okra.
  • check
    Iron: Iron is critical to staying healthy. It promotes blood production and brings oxygen into the blood. Insufficient iron levels in the body will cause anemia. There are many iron choices for vegans such as lentils, pumpkin, tomato sauce, and more.
  • check
    Iodine: This nutrient is important to keeping the body’s immune system healthy. Iodine can reduce thyroid hormones, and kill bacteria, and other microorganisms. Insufficient iodine may increase the chance of cancer and infertility.​
  • check
    Zinc: Zinc is considered a trace mineral because very little is required for good health. The body doesn’t store excess zinc, so it must be eaten regularly.
    Plant-based options for consuming zinc are peanuts, beans, sunflower seeds, corn, and chickpeas (3). 

FAQs on Vegan Diet Plans

1. What are good vegan sources of protein?

Good vegan sources of protein include tofu, lentils, chickpeas, tempeh, beans, and most nuts and seeds (4).

Nearly all greens, beans, grains, nuts, and seeds contain some protein.

A common concern of non-vegans is that there aren’t enough protein options to stay healthy. But it’s not difficult to consume the recommended daily amount (RDA) as a vegan.

If you really struggle to get in your target protein intake, I suggest taking a vegan protein powder. Here are some of my favorites.

mixed nuts

2. What are foods to avoid on a vegan diet?

Foods to avoid on a vegan diet include any non-plant products, such as meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, and eggs – as well as some natural flavorings, gelatin, added colorings, and certain additives.

There are a surprising amount of items that include ingredients or additives created from non-plant sources. 

Even things that appear to be healthy vegan choices are actually not, such as breads, refined sugar, and the wax on some produce. 

Ask for help at the grocery store or shop at specialty stores to avoid accidentally consuming non-vegan food.

meat being sold in the market

3. What can you drink on a vegan diet?

On a vegan diet, you can drink anything without animal products such as 100% juices, milk alternatives such as soy and almond milk, Coca-Cola soda products, and ciders.

When choosing juices, be sure it says “100% juice” and that you look carefully at if and how the juice is fortified. 

For example, some juices are fortified with omega-3 fatty acids, which is usually derived from fish. Other juices may have added Vitamin D3, which is sometimes derived from animals. Vitamin D2 is derived from plants.

To get the biggest bang for your buck for juices, I recommend taking greens powder - they're literally a superfood. Here are our favorites: The Best Greens Powders.

smoothie

You’ll also need to do some research on your alcoholic beverage choices. Some beers and wines are processed using animal products. If you don’t want to risk it, almost all hard liquors are vegan friendly (5).

Vegan ​​Diet Plan For Weight Loss: The Bottom Line

Don’t have another shy day at the beach or continue standing in the back of group photos. With a small shift in your grocery list, you can use veganism to lose weight, stay slim, and be healthy.

In the long-term, your body will thank you.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention states that 25% of all deaths in the USA are from heart disease. Other research shows that due to high consumption of fruit, vegetables, and fibers, vegans have a lower chance of heart disease as well as diabetes.

This article contains everything you need to know about beginning your journey to enjoying a healthy plant-based meal plan. It all boils down to knowing your calorie expenditure, counting your intake, avoiding the right items, and being sure you compensate for any micronutrients.

For better or for worse, every meal is a health-decision. Make the right decision for 3 meals a day, 7 days a week using this fuss-free, weight loss meal plan with easy-to-find ingredients.

Don’t wait another day – it’s easier than ever to be vegan. Browse our website for additional tips, tricks, and resources.

Read our Vegan Bodybuilding Meal Plan Guide to learn how to create one yourself.


References

​1. Winston J Craig, Health effects of vegan diets, retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/89/5/1627S/4596952

​2. Bethany Cadman, Vegetarian and vegan sources of B-12, retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320524.php

​3. Heather McClees, The Importance of Getting Enough Zinc on a Vegan Diet and How to Do It, retrieved from http://www.onegreenplanet.org/natural-health/the-importance-of-getting-enough-zinc-in-a-vegan-diet-and-how-to-do-it/

​4. Alina Petre, MS, RD (CA), The 17 Best Protein Sources for Vegans and Vegetarians, retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/protein-for-vegans-vegetarians

5. Drinkaware, Vegan Alcohol, retrieved from https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/alcohol-facts/alcoholic-drinks-units/vegan-alcohol/

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Jason Hughes

Hey, I'm Jason and welcome to my website. I created VeganLiftz because of my passion (more like obsession) with the vegan diet, strength training, and bodybuilding. Feel free to peruse the various articles on this website; I hope you find something useful!
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