What is the Vegan Military Diet and should you try it?


Despite its name, the military vegan diet has nothing to do with the military.

Rather, it’s a vegan version of the military diet, a restrictive fad diet that promises to help you lose up to 10 pounds (4.5 kg) in just one week through 3 days of calorie restriction.

The structure of both diets is the same – the only major difference is that the Vegan Military Diet uses vegan foods.

This article tells you everything you need to know about the vegan military diet, including a list of suggested foods, its effect on weight loss, and whether it’s healthy.

The Vegan Military Diet is a restrictive diet based on the original Military Diet, also known as the 3 Day Diet.

This is a 3 day low calorie meal plan with 1100-1400 calories per day followed by 4 days off. Since it alternates between periods of restricted and unrestricted eating, it can be considered a form of intermittent fasting.

The diet encourages following this eating pattern for up to 4 weeks, or until you achieve your desired weight loss.

The main difference between the Original Military Diet and the Vegan Military Diet is that the latter includes plant-based alternatives to typical menu items such as meat, dairy, and eggs.

Beyond that, the framework of both regimes is exactly the same.

Summary

The Vegan Military Diet is a vegan alternative to the standard military diet. This is a 3 day low calorie meal plan followed by 4 days without dieting.

Similar to the traditional military diet, the vegan version involves 3 days of restricted eating followed by 4 days of less restrictive eating.

Sample 3 Day Meal Plan

Breakfast:

  • A serving of fruit: 1/2 grapefruit, 1/2 banana or 1 small apple
  • A serving of carbohydrates: 1 slice whole wheat bread, 5 saltine crackers, 1/2 cup (93 grams) quinoa or couscous, or 1/2 cup (130 grams) baked beans
  • A serving of nuts: 2 tablespoons (32 grams) peanut butter or 15 to 20 almonds
  • A beverage : 1 cup (236 ml) coffee or tea — no added sweeteners or plant-based beverages

Lunch:

  • A portion of vegetables: 1/2 avocado, suggested daily
  • A serving of dip: 1 to 2 tablespoons (15 to 30 grams) hummus, suggested daily
  • A serving of carbohydrates: 1 slice whole wheat bread, 5 saltine crackers or 1/2 cup (93 grams) quinoa or couscous
  • A beverage : 1 cup (236 ml) unsweetened almond, soy, or hemp milk or 1 cup coffee or tea without sweeteners or plant-based beverages

Having dinner:

  • Two servings of fruit: 1/2 banana, 1 small apple, 1 cup broccoli, 1 cup green beans or 1/2 cup baby carrots
  • A serving of protein: tofu in any preparation with less than 300 calories, 2 vegetarian hot dogs without bread or 1/2 cup (85 grams) of canned chickpeas
  • A serving of dessert: 1 cup (236 ml) vegan ice cream, suggested daily

The diet recommends gradually decreasing your calories each day. Therefore, you are encouraged to eat as little food as possible on the third day. For example, lunch might include a single slice of whole-wheat bread, 1 tablespoon (15 grams) of hummus, and half an avocado.

The remaining 4 days

During the 4 days without dieting, you are allowed to eat more calories to give yourself a break from the strict guidelines. However, the diet recommends eating no more than 1,500 calories per day on these days, which is still restrictive.

The diet suggests selecting breakfast, lunch, dinner, and two snacks from a list of recommended foods. For example:

  • Breakfast: rolled oats prepared with a plant-based drink, chopped apples, nuts and cinnamon
  • Lunch: black bean wrap made with whole wheat tortillas, avocado, lettuce and salsa
  • Having dinner: vegan chili with tortilla chips, shredded vegan cheese and a side salad
  • Snacks: popped popcorn without seasoning or butter

Although the diet claims to offer more flexibility these days, your food choices are still limited.

Summary

The vegan military diet is restrictive and only provides a few approved foods.

The vegan military diet is neither healthy nor sustainable.

The 3-day portion of the diet provides less than 1,400 calories per day, which is well below the recommended calorie intake for most people.

According to the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, women ages 18-60 should generally consume 1,600-2,400 calories per day, while men ages 18-60 should consume 2,200-3,200 calories per day. day (1).

Keep in mind, however, that the recommended daily calorie intake depends on activity level – for example, if you’re sedentary, moderately active, or very active. Factors such as health status and personal goals may also play a role. (1).

Additionally, if you stick to the suggested 1,500 calorie limit for the remaining 4 days of the diet, you’ll likely still be eating significantly less than your recommended calorie intake (1).

The diet does not recommend any physical activity and instead relies on a significant calorie deficit to promote weight loss. If you choose to add exercise to your routine alongside diet, your body will need more calories (1).

Additionally, while the diet offers vegan alternatives for those following a plant-based diet, they are limited, portions are small, and many options are highly processed. Overall, this is not representative of what a healthy plant-based diet should look like.

A plant-based diet can be healthy if it includes a variety of minimally processed vegetables, fruits, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, and plant-based proteins such as beans, lentils, and tofu (2).

Finally, overly restrictive diets like this can worsen your relationship to food or contribute to eating disorders (3).

Healthy eating is enjoyable, affordable and sustainable eating. It should reflect other aspects of your life, such as culture, traditions, medical and nutritional needs, and preferences, while providing enough calories and nutrients for good health (4, 5, 6).

The vegan military diet neglects many of these important components of a healthy diet and is not recommended.

Summary

The vegan military diet is neither safe nor healthy. It’s too low in calories, can include highly processed foods, and is extremely restrictive.

The vegan military diet may cause temporary weight loss, but you’ll likely regain any lost weight once you resume your regular diet.

Because the diet is low in calories, you’ll likely have a large enough calorie deficit to lose weight (6).

However, the initial loss – specifically the promised 10 pounds (4.5 kg) in 1 week – is likely the result of water weight loss. When you restrict calories, your body begins to deplete its glycogen stores, which contain 3 grams of water per gram of glycogen (7, 8).

In other words, as your body depletes its glycogen stores, you also lose water, which can appear as weight loss. However, as soon as you start eating enough calories again, you’ll likely see the weight rebound (7, 8).

Over a longer period, you may lose some fat, but you may also lose muscle mass.

Muscle loss can occur because the diet is low in protein and does not emphasize physical activity. To maintain muscle mass during weight loss, it is important to eat enough protein and engage in physical activity (9).

Additionally, consuming so few calories is likely to increase hunger and not be enjoyable, making the diet difficult to follow in the long run (6).

Finally, the diet does not provide useful and sustainable healthy eating tips or skills – such as reading nutrition labels, meal planning, and cooking – that would help a person maintain weight loss after quitting. the system of government (5).

It’s best to follow a diet that creates a slight calorie deficit but is sustainable in the long run. Ideally, this will include increased physical activity and a mostly minimally processed diet high in protein, vegetables, fruit, fiber and healthy fats.

Summary

Following the vegan military diet can help you lose weight in the short term. However, you will likely regain most of your weight once you return to your regular diet.

The vegan military diet is a plant-based version of a fad diet called the military diet. Both versions are restrictive and low in calories.

Although it promises to help you lose weight quickly, you’ll likely regain most of your weight once you resume your regular diet, especially since the diet is only recommended for up to 4 weeks.

This diet is too restrictive and dangerous to follow long term. You’re much better off following a healthy, sustainable diet and exercise program that you enjoy and can stick to to help you achieve significant weight loss.

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