Maximized Living for the Vegetarian
“I want to try the Maximized Living Nutrition Plans, but I don’t eat meat. Are there plant-friendly foods I can implement into my diet and still thrive with Maximized Living—particularly on the Advanced Plan?”
Absolutely. Carnivores aren’t the only ones who do well in Maximized Living. Although our 2009 publication, the Maximized Living Nutrition Plans, was written with meat-eaters in mind, vegetarians have a massive nutritional spectrum with which to work. At first, we set out to offer guidance to those who still found it natural to pile processed cold cuts onto white bread during their daily fast food fix at lunch time. Now, the significance of underlining how accessible the plan is to all individuals—especially vegetarians—is important.
Vegetarians certainly have a rich variety of meat alternatives and proteins to work with in either of the Maximized Living Nutrition Plans, which sustains a balanced approach to healthy living.
Veggies vs. Healthy Meats: A Balanced Approach
I have colleagues in both the plant-based world and the meat-eating world, and they are all very convincing.
My friends in the raw food industry in California could convert a person to vegetarianism overnight, while my friends who are experts in the area of healthy dairy and animal fats would easily have you questioning any move to vegetarianism, as their science is solid, too.
Personally, I encourage a balanced approach to nutrition. I understand each of these nutritional pathways, and their needs are each uniquely met within Maximized Living.
While some men and women prosper eating meat, this is not the case for all.
Different genetic tendencies can play a role, and consequently some people do better with meat, while others advance on a plant-based regime. Many people are familiar with “eating right for your blood type.” This is a genetically specific approach. Blood typing identifies sensitivities to meat, which assuredly exist within individuals. Genetics, sensitivities, backgrounds, cultures and so forth play a role in this query. However, there is absolutely no question that vegetarians can move towards a plant-based diet, even on theAdvanced Plan.
Grains Aren’t Good
A grave and common misconception around plant based eating is grain consumption. Some individuals still have the opinion that eating mass amounts of grains and flours is a healthy approach to vegetarianism. This idea was widely approved in the 1990s, and has unfortunately trickled down into the current decade. Truthfully, this was me in my college years. (I wasn’t a vegetarian; I was a grain-atarian.)
Most people now know that white, refined flours, rice and corn are not ideal options. However, even when “whole grains” are chosen, the body breaks these down and turns them into sugar, which creates stress in our systems. So, when we’re talking about getting in carbs, remember that raw vegetables are the best carbs you’ll ever get. On the advanced plan, there are plenty of options for vegetarians without resorting to refined grains or even rice, which lack the nutritional content that high fat oils, seeds, nuts, or dark leafy greens are chalked full of.
Protein for Plant Eaters
For plant eaters who are seeking supplements or replacements for meat, it is valuable to understand that it’s really not about the “grams of protein.” It’s about the quality of amino acids. If someone is trying to gain muscle or lose body fat, they should be focusing on the quality of the individual amino acids within the protein, instead of the absolute number of grams.
Vegetarians have a wide variety of options for protein within their diet. Things like hemp seeds, which are high in quality protein, rich in amino acids, and have a balanced ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fats, can be tossed onto a fresh green salad or into your morning smoothie.
There are 22 essential amino acids. Carnivorous eaters find most of these acids in a meat protein. However, plant eaters probably aren’t getting all 22 from one single vegetable. Typically, you can consume these amino acids from different quality vegetables, seeds and healthy oils. I recommend beefing up foods withnuts and seeds like almonds or cashews, which are rich in protein, vitamin E, and healthy fats. You can add a handful of these nuts to salads, or grind them in your Vitamix for ground almond milk. Cashews are quite diverse and can be ground into thick, cheese-like creations or sauces. They double as protein packed pastes in recipes that would normally require cheese, they are sticky, and bind food together when water is added to them, and they taste delicious.
Plant-Based Options For A Maximized Life
- Hemp Seeds
- Sunflower Seeds
- Chia Seeds
- Coconut Milk
- Coconut Oil
- Flaxseed Oil
- Avocado Oil/Fresh Avocado
- Ground Almond Milk
Think Twice about Soy
We’ve always endorsed fermented soy foods like miso, tempeh, tamari, and natto, over heavily-processed and estrogen-mimicking tofu and processed soy. Go ahead and have odd non-GMO edamame in a side-dish or a sauce. However, soy is not a main course in countries where it is indigenous to the culture, so it shouldn’t be a main course in this country, either.
Tasty Recipes For Vegetarians On The Advanced Plan
- Tahini Kale. This is a delicious dish packed with protein and nutrition. The tahini, which is a sesame seed spread that is rich in protein and magnesium, mixed with fibrous, antioxidant kale, is a great choice for plant eaters.
- Very Vanilla Banana Smoothie. This is a great option for vegetarians looking for a healthy morning boost. Coconut or almond milk provides an appropriate healthy protein, and compliments the banana base, which is high in potassium.
- Lemon-Garlic Baby Stuffed Eggplant. This hearty dinner choice is already rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants, but plant-eaters may chose to add extra healthy oils or seeds to fill up on protein.
- Almond Meal Pancakes. This is a breakfast option that is high in protein, but still satisfies the Sunday morning sweet tooth. For vegetarians who still enjoy pancakes on the weekend, this recipe contains a high source of healthy nut protein.
Vegetarians Transitioning To Meat
If you are considering moving away from vegetarianism and back into an animal based diet, carefully look at where your meat is being raised. Avoid conventionally raised meat, and choose meats that have been organically grown in an ecologically farmed environment. Meats that are farmed in this way are safe and healthy for consumption.
Adding meat-based proteins into your diet one at a time is important, as it allows the body time to adjust. If you are considering whey protein, there is no question that this is a very suitable option if it is from an organic cow, as it is a bio-available protein, which is the most readily available protein in the human body. Keep these general tips in mind if you are thinking about transitioning from a plant-based regime to a more carnivorous, but healthfully carnivorous lifestyle.
While vegetarianism is certainly not for everyone, the power of vegetables can—and will—benefit anybody. From dark leafy greens to vibrant yellow squash, veggies are packed with healing nutrients, making them absolutely critical to a healthy lifestyle.
Join your nearest Maximized Living wellness doctor on Monday, September 9th for the Cancer Killers-themed community dinner.
Over a delicious meal, you’ll learn the steps you can take to increase your body’s ability to fight and overcome disease—including cancer. And if you’re wondering how to get more veggies into your diet without taking up juicing, be sure to ask your doctor about Max Greens and Plant Protein. Each of these options is 100-percent vegetarian friendly.
There are 9 essential amino acids and 20 amino acids. Unfortunately, the wording was off here and we made a bit of a mistake.
While there are nine essential amino acids and 20 amino acids which exist in foods (not solely exclusive to meats) that break down into proteins, we felt it necessary to recognize that plant eaters can obtain these sources in foods other than meats.
In our article we wanted to stress that, while carnivores usually find a full intake of amino acids in the protein they get from meat, plant eaters can also find the amino acids they need in non-meat sources, they just won’t find all of their amino acids in a single source. So it’s important for vegetarians to eat a wide variety of nuts, seeds, healthy fats and high protein vegetables.
Our research shows that healthy fats (like flaxseed, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds) do contain amino acids, just not all 20 amino acids in one source, which meat eaters generally get from one source. (Wu, Guyao. (2009) Amino Acids: Metabolism, function, and nutrition. Amino Acids, 37 (1), 1-17.)
Thank you for reading!
About the Author
Dr. B.J. Hardick is the co-author of the best-selling Maximized Living Nutrition Plans, used in natural health clinics worldwide, and is a contributing author of The Cancer Killers: The Cause is the Cure. His health centre in London, Ontario is one of the largest clinics of its kind. In Dr. Hardick’s seminars and care for patients, he teaches and implements the principles of Maximized Living which he has championed his entire life. www.DrHardick.com.