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schuyler

Vegetarian Vs Eating Meat

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I have been a vegetarian for about 7-8 years, and before my celiac diagnosis, I relied heavily on meat substitutes. I cut out the fake meats after my diagnosis because almost all of them contain gluten as a filler. Since then I have been eating tofu and drinking soy milk about 3 times a week. Last week, I also found out that I am lactose and casien intollerant. Friday I spoke on the phone with a nutritionst and she told me that I need to cut out or limit my tofu and soy milk intake and start eating some meat. This is a nutritionist that I know well, but I wanted another opinion, so I asked a doctor who told me that cutting out those things would not help me. I'm so confused!! That is why I'd like advice from you all. Since my diagnosis, my symptoms have not improved at all, I have not gained any weight, and yesterday I developed a blistery, itchy yet burning rash all over my face (possibly dh, but I'm not sure). I am not sure if this is related to celiac or if it's something else.

Basically, what I'd like to know is whether I should start eating some meat (like chicken) again, and cut out tofu and soy milk. The reason that I'm asking everyone on here, is because you all seem to know more about these things than the medical community :D. I'm not trying to start a debate on here between vegetarians and meat eaters, I'm just really confused about what I should do. I'd do anything to start feeling better, even if it means eating meat again. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Sorry this is so long!

Danielle

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I think you are relying to heavily on soy, but that's just my opinion. However, I think it would be reasonable to eliminate soy from your diet for a week or so to find out if it's causing you issues. If it is, then you really will need to decide how you will eat a balanced diet without it in the future.

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Hi Danielle--If you are open to eating meat, I would suggest getting some "clean" hormone free, minimally processed chicken. They carry it at Whole Foods, if you have one near-by. It could be that you are now sensitive to soy, and that's not unusual. Unfortunately, these additional intolerances take a bit of "trial and error" to see what is actually causing the symptoms. Once the gluten is taken out of the diet, these other sensitivites can become problems. From personal experience, I find that doctors really don't know much about nutrition or food intolerance.

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You might try limiting the soy. I believe tofu is one of those things that can mimic gluten - the molecular structure of the protein becomes similar to gluten and can cause the same types of reactions in your body. It's worth a shot. Here's some random yet interesting info. vegetarianism:

http://www.paulchek.com/articles/list.aspx...d=200&auth_id=1

I don't neccesarily take one side or the other personally, I just trust Paul Chek (much more so than I trust doctors) when it comes to information on nutrition.

Oh yeah - and if you reintroduce meat, do so slowly. It can be tough at first if your system isn't used to it.

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I, too, do not want to start a debate, but I was a vegan for 2 years because I didn't like the way animals were killed or the things they were injected with. I have since gotten over that (I am NOT saying that you should "get over it", just saying that I was slowly less and less disgusted by it). I would think that if you didn't eat meat for reasons like mine, that maybe you should give chicken a try. But if you are hard core, more serious, more dedicated, then it might be a really hard thing for you to do. That is a personal choice.

I do think that chicken is healthier than that much soy or tofu (just based on what I have read in books and the research I have done online). Chicken is a lean meat. But, again, if it really grosses you out, then perhaps it isn't worth it.

I hopt that helps you somewhat! I guess all I can say is what I would do. And what I DID do is starting eating chicken, and then slowly include other stuff. Good luck to you! Tiff

Hi Danielle--If you are open to eating meat, I would suggest getting some "clean" hormone free, minimally processed chicken. They carry it at Whole Foods, if you have one near-by.

Ditto! I have also seen it at my loca grocery store, HEB. I think the brand I get is called naked chicken, or bubba's naked chicken...something like that....it is with the regular store meats, but it has "no hormones, no additives" etc on the plastic wrap around the meat. I hope you find something near you!

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No argument over vegetarian/carnivore out of me; I understand both sides of the fence. I would suggest, also, that you may be too dependent upon soy, and my concern primarily comes from the worry that you will develop an intolerance to that as well. I'm gluten free and casein free as well, but find that I can't have too much soy. Due to hypoglycemic tendencies, I can't go vegetarian, but it can be done if you're willing to be careful about what you eat, do plenty of cooking, and actively seek out a wide variety of high protein vegetarian foods. Variety will be key in a situation like that. (Besides the standards nuts, seeds, and beans, the higher protein grains like amaranth and quinoa will be useful, along with lentils, and specialty things like hemp and flax seeds.)

If you do opt to try adding meat back to your diet, do so *very* slowly, and try sticking to natural, hormone free meats. Your body hasn't had to produce the enzymes for breaking down animal proteins in years, and while it can do so again, it will take it a number of weeks to do so with any regularity, and you may find it quite uncomfortable to eat much meat until your body is producing those enzymes in quantity again.

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I tried going vegetarian and went the soy route for protein. Tofu, soy milk, soy burgers. The whole nine yards. Unfortunately, the result has been an acute soy allergy. It's really nasty and no picnic. A gluten accident is actually easier to take. Meat and fish are back on my plate now, at least until I can find a safe protein source.

At a minimum, I would suggest watching your soy intake and not over-doing it. Also, read the soy posts on this board. There is a lot of good information.

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I think that there is no reason you have to start eating meat in order to be healthy. You could cut out some of your soy like maybe the milk. I personally would not start eating meat.

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I ate vegetarian for at least five years, primarily because of the hormones and antibiotics they give the animals. Plus, my husband sells to meat packers and farmers and I didn't like how they raised the animals; it just doesn't seem like they'd be healthy. So, for me it was a health thing and I still ate meat if I ate at someone else's house. I read a book called something like "What your doctor won't tell you about Premenopause" because I was having hot flashes, night sweats, was hyperventilating frequently, among other things. Oddly enough, the female MD who wrote this book talked about an elimintation diet, which is what made me aware of my problem with wheat (I didn't know about gluten yet). This MD was a vegetarian and noticed that as she got older she needed more protein than she was getting and added some healthy meat and fish back into her diet. I did as well and feel much better for it. I don't know whether it's age or time away from meat protein that matters.

I actually eat very little meat. I eat lots of canned red salmon (it's not farmed) and free range eggs. I do on occassion get a steak when we eat out and cook chicken at home. I have the unpleasant experience of driving by a veal farm on a regular basis, I'm no animal activist for sure, but ... those cows don't look any healthier than a very sick celiac still eating gluten!! <_< I can't imagine that meat having any nutritional value!!

I guess the only way you can find out if soy is a problem is to cut it out for a while.

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Thanks everyone! You guys seem to know so much more than Drs about all of this stuff. I am going to eliminate soy from my diet for a few weeks and see how I feel. I'm still not sure about meat, but I think I might start eating some chicken. Thanks again for all of the advice.

Danielle

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I am a lifelong lacto-vegetarian who recently went gluten, dairy and soy free. I eat plenty of legumes and nuts, besides rice and corn and do not at all feel like I'm not getting enough protein. From my experience, it is quite doable, though it definitely requires planning and cooking a lot at home. There are plenty others out there who are also gluten-free with similar diet restrictions. Checking out these forums may help - hundreds who are gluten-free & vegan/vegetarian including those who have eliminated soy:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/vegetariangf/

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Vegan-and-Gluten-Free/

Feel free to PM me if you'd like cookbook recommendations!

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Since I cannot eat most meats (and will only eat clean turkey

when I can find it) and allergic to much more - some alternatives:

shelled hemp seed (and protein powder)

flaxseed meal

rice protein powder

rice bran

quinoa (I had to start very slowly on this one)

I will make: veggie burgers including all

but the hemp seed items,

protein drinks, and add hemp seed to

salads and cooked veggies.

As much as I love tinyada organic pasta

I have cut back - because I would get

the 3pm crash after eating it for lunch.

Also make sure that your mineral and vitamin levels

are correct! as I just found out my iron levels were

too low for me.

Hope something from the above helps!

:)

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Since I cannot eat most meats (and will only eat clean turkey

when I can find it) and allergic to much more - some alternatives:

shelled hemp seed (and protein powder)

flaxseed meal

rice protein powder

rice bran

quinoa (I had to start very slowly on this one)

I will make: veggie burgers including all

but the hemp seed items,

protein drinks, and add hemp seed to

salads and cooked veggies.

As much as I love tinyada organic pasta

I have cut back - because I would get

the 3pm crash after eating it for lunch.

Also make sure that your mineral and vitamin levels

are correct! as I just found out my iron levels were

too low for me.

Hope something from the above helps!

:)

I am going to try everything that you listed. Thanks so much! On Friday, I am going to have my mineral and vitamin level checked again, so I'll talk to my dr about everything then.

I am a lifelong lacto-vegetarian who recently went gluten, dairy and soy free. I eat plenty of legumes and nuts, besides rice and corn and do not at all feel like I'm not getting enough protein. From my experience, it is quite doable, though it definitely requires planning and cooking a lot at home. There are plenty others out there who are also gluten-free with similar diet restrictions. Checking out these forums may help - hundreds who are gluten-free & vegan/vegetarian including those who have eliminated soy:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/vegetariangf/

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Vegan-and-Gluten-Free/

Feel free to PM me if you'd like cookbook recommendations!

Thanks for the advice and links. I'll check those out.

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soy is my main protein source.

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shelled hemp seeds taste good in a number of things - yogurt, hot cereal, and on salads.

I don't particularly like the taste of rice bran, but use it occasionally. the taste of rice protein powder isn't fabulous either, but I use it in my smoothies and in some baking. you can also get 'peaceful planet' protein powder (that's vegetarian and GFCFEFSF), and has a sweet taste that is nice in smoothies, but is a nasty green color. ;-)

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Way before I knew about my celiac disease, my chiropractor dx'd me hypothyroid. (Which I now know is linked to celiac disease). He suggested I start eating red meat because of the lysine in it. My hypothyroid went away. He did not suggest I stick to meat eating for life, just until my thyroid straightened out.

It worked for me. (But he also told me only to get good quality red meat, no chemicals). Neiman Ranch is a great brand. In fact, I try never to eat anything else - I made the mistake of reading their guidelines, which are very awsome, but then, some of the things made me think, if they have a policy of NOT including these things in their farming processes, does that mean others DO include it? {in order to not gross anyone out on this thread, I will refrain from telling you exactly what - if you really want to know, PM me}.

Long story short, eating meat works for me. (I forgot to mention I was veggie before for year before). I would say try it, and if it works, great, if not, don't do it any more. But that's just me - I'll try anything once... :D

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My husband has opposite problem, sort of .... he cannot have (digest) fruits and vegetables nor beans. Before he got ill with celiac, he ate a very balanced diet meat & veggies & fruits & soy, etc. Now he relies heavily on meats (all kinds) and fish and is kind of bummed out still that he can eat more vegan food (just to clarify, he was never a vegetarian). He rarely eats red meat, mostly chicken and fish. We buy our meat at Whole Foods where it's organic and I know their policy on the raising of the meats and the fact that they are not full of hormones and anti biotics.

I was going to suggest fish to you as another source of protein.

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i am also vegetarian who is lactose free as well. i would NOT consider ever eating meat again. your body has long ago stopped producing the enzymes necessary to break down meat. i do think it sounds like you're a bit heavy on the soy, considering your body's response. you may have to cut it out entirely for a week or so and then reintroduce to see what your body does.

vegetables contain lots of protein - a fact few people seem to recognize. vegetarianism has been around for thousands of years in India. those people do not rely on soy, they get their proteins through lentils, garbanzo's, dairy, and a whole slew of vegetables, etc.

we eat, and eat, and overeat protein in this country, approximately 1/3 of what protein people take in daily is really necessary. we're literally brainwashed to think we need meat with every meal, it is simply not true. in fact, what is consumed by the typical american is quite difficult on the kidneys. additionally, meat is typically putrified in the body because it takes so long to digest (before it is excreted), especially read meat (a little fact most meat eaters do not like to hear). i could go on and on. suffice it to say, i don't agree with the idea at all.

it may help your gut (and your face) if you aid the situation with some probiotics and enzymes. be careful to read the ezyme label to see exactly what enzymes you're taking. candidas can also make it hard to digest complex carbs - you may want to look into that eventually.

hang in there and i wish you the best with your situation.

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Thanks everyone. My drs office just called and said they have an opening this morning, so I'm going to go in and talk to him about all of this.

Danielle

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vegetables contain lots of protein - a fact few people seem to recognize.

we eat, and eat, and overeat protein in this country, approximately 1/3 of what protein people take in daily is really necessary.

I disagree on both these points. If you calculate out the nutritional contents of a diet that is mostly vegetables, you will find it very deficient in protein. Try it sometime.

In fact, very few people eat 3x the protein that they need. The governmental required/suggested quantities of protein in the diet of a healthy person have in fact been shown to be correct over and over again. Again, if you were to calculate out a diet that contained three times the recommended amount of protein, you would find it contained far more meat than almost anyone could eat.

When I was weightlifting I tried to eat a diet that contained twice the recommended amount of protein, and I was unable, even though I am a dedicated meat-eater.

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I disgree. You can get adequate protein on a vegetarian based diet. If you eat too much protein, it 1) isn't absorbed anyway and 2) if you REALLY overdo it, you're setting yourself up for further health risks.

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I have been vegetarian my whole life and then found out about celiac disease. Meat is not an option for me. There are plenty of good things to eat out there. Fruits, veges, nuts, rice, soups, bread substitutes, etc. I would try and take soy out and see how you feel. If you feel as if you can eat meat, well you could try it. It is a personal decision, but I think you can remain healthy without it. It is tougher to eat out and tougher to cook, but it can be done.

Even on Oprah one day they talked about meat being putrified when you eat it. It doesn't digest in our bodies like other things. Also there are studies that say vegetarians live longer on average then meat eaters. Think about chimpanzees, apes and other very strong animals. They all just eat vegetables all day and are very strong, so I don't think you are lacking anything without meat. All of it is your decision. Hope you start feeling better soon.

Monica

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Meat is the natural diet of the human. We evolved on it. The human digestive system is not designed to digest cellulose, like the gorilla or the cow. Only recently have sufficient quantities of other foods been available to become the major portion of our diets, and most plant materials need to be cooked to be maximally digestible.

If somebody on Oprah said that meat is already putrified when we eat it, that is their opinion, and has nothing to do with the freshness of the meat, or with our digestive system.

I have figured out protein contents of diets based on various foodstuffs. For a person who eats no meat, dairy, or soy, it is likely that they are getting a marginal amount of protein in their diet at best. In cases of stress, such as illness, this may not be enough.

My own sister, a doctor (anesthesiologist) told me we can get all the protein we need from potatoes. So I figured it out. To get all the protein we need from potatoes, we would need to eat 4000 calories of potatoes a day, clearly leaving no calories free for anything else. This is a good calculation for you to try - pick a food and see how much a person would have to eat in order to meet their daily requirement for protein.

I am comfortable with the fact that I am at the top of the food chain. If you're not, you can choose not to eat meat, but you can't turn yourself into an herbivore. Won't happen, it's not even a choice.

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I respect your opinions, but please remember that is what they are. :)

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