Friday, August 7, 2020

Best Vegan Products I Recommend

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Since I’m mentioning various products from time to time, I thought I’d write about ones that I like every so often.

Just a note

I don’t get anything for writing about products, I don’t work for any companies, and don’t get any money from them. There are some products that I really like, and that have made my vegan eating life a lot easier, so I figure it might help someone else. Generally I’ve tried lots of other brands of similar products, but have found favorites that I like to stick to. If I come of as sales pitchy – I apologize ahead of time, there are things that I like that I REALLY like

When I first went plant based I had very little clue how to get all the nutrients and vitamins that I needed. I also had a hard time with hunger. The switch was so fast for me, and I didn’t know what to eat, and often this would end up in me eating more starch and other filler kinds of food more than I wanted.

Vegan Smoothies

Early on someone suggested that I try doing smoothies to help me out. I had no idea what I was doing in the smoothie department. I liked going out for smoothies, but really had never succesfully made one at home. One day, while in the store, I picked up a bunch of small smoothie packets and decided to try them out. That is when I found Vega.

All of the Vega Complete Whole Food Health Optimizers are fantastic. Each serving has 100 calories 2.5 grams of fat, 9 carbs, 6 grams of fiber, 0 sugar and 11 grams of protein plus all of the vitamins and nutrients you could want – all plant based. When I first read the packet I honestly thought it would taste nasty. I was really happy to be proven wrong on that front. And on a side note – they have no bad effect on my blood sugar numbers at all, in fact, my numbers tend to do really well when I’ve had a few in my day.

I generally blend my mix with other things, but it’s really good on it’s own as well. It’s been a life saver while traveling – I never have to worry if I can get something to eat. I have a “blender bottle” and a good supply  of Vega packets on hand. Even if we are in a hotel I can get some ice and water and blend. Makes life easy. (you can usually find blender bottles for under 10 dollars at sports stores/vitamin stores or natural grocery stores).

But I really enjoy when I can blend it with other stuff… some of my favorites:

Chocolate Banana Green

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 packet /serving chocolate vega
  • 1 bunch kale leaves
  • water

Strawberry Chai

  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • water
  • 1 packet/serving vanilla chai

Citrus Aloe

  • 1 packet/serving  original flavor Vega
  • 1/2 cup of aloe juice
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/4 cup natural Orange juice
  • Water

Chocolate Peanut Butter

  • 1 chocolate packet /serving
  • 2 TBS of nut butter
  • water (or plain non dairy milk)

Almond Vanilla

  • 1 packet/serving vanilla vega
  • 3 TBS Almond butter
  • Water or milk

Berry Banana

  • 1 packet/serving berry
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup frozen raspberries
  • water

Blueberry vanilla

  • 1 packet/serving vanilla
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 tsp agave
  • water

Acai Banana

  • 1 packet /serving natural flavor vega
  • 1 frozen ouch of Acai puree
  • 1 frozen banana
  • water

Green Chocolate

  • 1 packet/serving chocolate
  • 1 bunch kale
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/4 cup aloe
  • (can be made with any flavor really)

Vega can seem a bit pricey – but when I figured out it was less than 3 dollars per meal I figured that I was spending a lot more than that on other things that were not nearly as healthy. You can find it at most natural health stores, and you can find it on-line. Currently bodybuilding.com has a good deal on it and the shipping isn’t bad either. If you aren’t wanting to commit to a large container, go look for the packets of it, they are sold individually at most stores with decent sections with protein powders. Pick up some other brands as well to see which one you like the best and experiment with different flavors and things to add in.

Smoothies are easy and they help with hunger and energy. It’s a great and tasty way to get what you need.

Additional Vegan Resources & Products

Here are some additional vegan food products to try. Most of them are available at enlightened grocers such as Whole Foods, Henry’s, and Trader Joes.

The foundation of your diet is fresh fruits and vegetables, lots of them. But an occasional treat is highly encouraged. Think a plant-based diet plan has to be boring? There are plenty of vegan food products that will satisfy your sweet and salty cravings and help you lose weight.

Do you often eat in your car or office? Get ideas plant based food products that you can eat on the go by visiting Nat’s post about staying vegan while traveling.

Breakfast

I’m a huge breakfast fan. A perfect breakfast for me is half a grapefruit, then cereal with fruit (frozen organic blueberries are a good substitute in winter) and organic soy milk.

Organic cereals are now widely available in grocery stores. Here are a few of my favorite vegan breakfast foods.

All cereals by Kashi. Particularly good: Kashi nuggets (like Grape Nuts only better), Kashi Autumn Wheat (available at Costco!)

Organic Soy Milk – Silk brand comes in many flavors, is widely available, and the company has won awards for its environmentally friendly business practices. Other brands to try include Eden Soy, Westsoy, and Organic O (available at Von’s).

All cereals by Barbara’s Bakery especially the Shredded Oats (like Quaker Oat Squares only better)

Lightlife Smart Bacon – Can’t live without bacon? You won’t believe how good this tastes!

Lunch

Fresh salads are lunch staples if you want to lose weight for life. But salad alone won’t fill you up. Here are some recommended healthy vegan food products to try.

Better ‘n Peanut Butter by Wonder Natural Foods Corp available at all Trader Joe’s. 85% less fat than regular peanut better and every bit as satisfying. Pair with organic jam on healthy multi-grain bread for an awesome sandwich!

Boca Burgers Roasted Onion Flavor or Original Vegan Burger – Great tasting veggie burger available in an organic version. Other veggie burgers are widely available but check the ingredients carefully as some include cheese or eggs.

Amy’s Organic Soups especially chunky vegetable, black bean vegetable, vegetable lentil, and butternut squash. Pair a hearty soup with a fresh green salad for the perfect lunch.

Whole Soy and Co. Yogurt Need something you can pack easily? This yogurt is to die for!

Hummus paired with whole grain crackers is a great lunch or snack with some fresh fruit. Many brands of organic hummus are widely available, so try a few to find your ideal. Another benefit of many hummus products is they often contain garlic, a naturally beneficial spice.

Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese is great on crackers, celery, or toast.

Dinner

There are countless websites with amazing vegan dinner recipes. Most of my dinners include plenty of fresh vegetables, brown rice, lentils, tofu, and whole grain pasta in some combination. Stir frying is quick and easy.

If you need a break from cooking, here are some vegan food products that anyone can successfully make into delicious lose weight for life dinners.

DeBoles Organic Whole Wheat Pasta or other organic, whole grain pastas. Top with organic tomato sauce (like Muir Glen) and include some cut up mushrooms, summer squash, and onions and fresh garlic for a satisfying main dish. Quick and easy!

Amy’s Roasted Vegetable Pizza Great for emergency dinners since it only takes 11 minutes in the oven. Combine with a big green salad or organic soup for a quick and healthy plant based dinner.

Lightlife Smart Dogs Got kids? These are great on the grill.

Now and Zen Unchicken and Unbeef You wont’ believe these are not the real thing!

Snacks, Crackers, and Sweets

Yes there are vegan food products that are suitable healthy snacks. Just don’t get fooled into thinking that just because it’s vegan, you can eat as much as you want.

The foundation of your meals and snacks should still be fruits and vegetables if you want to lose weight for life.

Uncle Eddie’s Vegan Cookies especially the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip. Amazing how good cookies can taste without all of the chemicals! Watch out, these are addictive, but in moderation everyone deserves a treat once in while.

Organic Nuts are one of the best snacks you can choose. Healthy fats, protein, and it only takes a handful to satisfy.

Soy Delicious and Soy Dream frozen non-dairy desserts. You won’t miss ice cream once you discover these.

LaraBars are the snack bar of choice, but there are more. Read the ingredients of others to make sure they are vegan and organic. Pack a few in your desk drawer, car, and purse for emergencies.

Newman’s Own Fig Newtons and Organic Salted Round Pretzels. Not all the Newman’s Own products are vegan, so check the ingredients before buying.

Guiltless Gourmet makes acceptable chips including organic corn chips and blue corn chips. Pair with organic hummus or salsa for a crunchy, healthy snack.

Mary’s Gone Crackers Organic Crackers, Nature’s Path Organic Crackers

Dagoba Organic dark chocolate bars

Condiments, Baking Products, Sweeteners, etc.

A few vegan food products are must haves to make your kitchen complete. For salad toppers nothing beats organic olive oil and balsamic or rice vinegar.

Stevia is a natural, herbal sweetener that has no calories and is even safe for diabetics. It may appear expensive, but a little goes a long way. Use it in tea, sprinkle it on fruit, or use it in smoothies.

Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread or Soy Garden Natural Buttery Spread because sometimes we need a plant based food product that tastes and cooks like butter.

Follow Your Heart’s Vegan Gourmet substitute mozzarella, Montery jack, and nacho “cheeses”. Amazingly good and they even melt.

Ener-G is a powdered vegan egg replacement for use in cooking and baking. Many easy vegan recipes also offer suggestions for alternatives to eggs for “binding”.

Follow Your Heart Vegenaise is an awesome plant based mayonnaise substitute.

Muir Glen and Westbrae ketchup.

Arrowhead Mills makes organic oat, whole wheat, and brown rice flours as well as organic blue and yellow corn meal.

Have you discovered healthy vegan food products you don’t see here? Let us know in the comments!

2 COMMENTS

  1. sagan

    I’ve heard of Vega, it sounds quite interesting but have yet to try it. Thanks for the smoothie recipes! Hugs about the family problems.

  2. Sara

    I tried one for the first time the other day. Much better with ice and I’m gonna try these recipes soon! I think Brendan Brazier’s fantastic. Read “Thrive” if you want to know his whole philosophy behind creating Vega; its fascinating. Veganism is not just for hippies anymore… ironman triathletes and ANYONE can eat healthy. I hope he gets popular!

Nat
I went on a plant based diet after diabetes almost took my life. Now, almost 2 years later not only have I reduced my type 2 diabetes symptoms, I have lost close to 200 pounds (and still losing). This is a place where I write about my journey as I continue the quest for health, and living a good life for today, and long into the future. Get hold of me on nat@cleanseplan.com

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