by 3J, www.3jsdiet.com
One of the most difficult forms of dieting for the bodybuilder is vegetarian dieting. A big part of the bodybuilding diet is eating protein. It is the basic building blocks of our muscles and we cannot go without it. When a vegetarian would like to be a bodybuilder it comes with a big hurdle, what can I eat that will sustain enough protein while keeping on with the vegetarian philosophy? In this article, I will talk about proper macro splitting for vegetarians. Specifically, we will discuss Ovo-lacto vegetarianism.
So what is a ovo-lacto vegetarianism? A ovo-lacto vegetarian will allow eggs from any animal and dairy to be part of his/her diet. A full on vegetarian or vegan will only eat plant food and nothing from the animal world (eggs and dairy would come from animals). If one was to start constraining their meat intake, I would highly recommend going ovo-lacto over full vegetarian. The issue with being full vegetarian is the inability to get complete proteins from your food sources. Plant proteins are not complete proteins and your body will lack certain necessities when dieting. With ovo-lacto dieting, you can get complete proteins from whey, dairy, and eggs.
Seeing as how one has to resort to certain things that may have higher carbs in it to get protein like beans, the best macro split for a ovo-lacto dieter is one that is higher in carbs and lower in protein. Statistically speaking, the higher your carb intake is, the less your protein needs will be (with a limit on how low you can go of course). Lets set up a 2500 calorie split. On such a split I would run 200g protein, 350g carbs and about 40g fats. Now someone might think how could you lose weight eating 350g carbs. Trust me, you can. Carbs are not the enemy so long as you make correct choices with complex carbs. Now, in retrospect, if you wanted to take your carbs down to 150g your protein would have to go up to about 300g to make up for the lack of carbs. Its really tough to eat 300g protein as a ovo-lacto vegetarian. Why make things difficult?
Lets talk about sources of protein for a ovo-lacto vegetarian:
Whey: it’s a dairy by-product that works wonderfully for vegetarians. Though I am a fan of whole foods you could easily make 25% of your protein intake from whey.
Eggs: Nothing on the planet is more bioavailable than eggs. A whole egg will have about 5-7g protein based upon the size.
Beans: Beans are a wonderful way to get protein in. Most beans have a favorable carb to protein ratio making it easy to eat just beans for a meal and get what you need.
Greek Yogurt/Cottage Cheese: If you buy the nonfat kind, these two dairy products are almost identical nutrition wise. They are also packed with protein. 2 cups of either of these usually yields anywhere from 40-50g protein! It’s a must have for such dieting!
I hope this sheds some light on ovo-lacto dieting.
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