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Thread: Variety in Vegetable Intake

  1. #1
    NimbyDagda's Avatar
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    Default Variety in Vegetable Intake

    I put myself down as not a vegan, as I have only just become a vegan today, and I think its a bit disrespectful to people who have done it for a long time to say I am a vegan basically after just deciding.

    Anyway the question I have is, How important is a variety of different vegetables in a Vegan diet?

    I ask because although I love legumes, grains and fruits but when it comes to vegetables I am a bit more picky, I like most root vegetables, but most others especially leafy green vegetables and salad items(the ones that are actually good for you) make me wretch.

    Do people have any suggestions for sneakily incorporating new vegetables into my diet in ways that my gag reflex won't spot?

  2. #2
    Hemlock's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Green leafy vegetables are essential to a vegan diet, if you miss out certain vegan food groups you'll get sick.
    i hide things i don't like in soup and mostly have a raw green smoothie each day - my green smoothie usually consists of a banana, two oranges, apple, any other fruit available like grapes and as many leafy green veg especially spinach as I can get in the blender. the fruit means you can't taste the greens, if you can taste them then add another banana which hides the taste completely.
    I get an organic seasonal veg box from Riverford organics every week for 14 for a medium size box and eat everything in it. Even pumpkin which is ff'ing disgusting If you eat veg as it is in season in this country and maybe buy some fruit extra you should get enough nourishment to be healthy.
    Congratulations on going vegan
    Silent but deadly :p

  3. #3
    Making changes Est's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Hi ND, I would certainly class you as a vegan We don't have a probationary period or anything!

    You do need a variety of veg - what I would really reccomend is that you invest in a copy of VIVA's nutrition poster (Veggie Vitamins and Other Good Things) which is excellent. It lists all the vitamins, minerals, protein, carbs etc and then gives a list of food sources for each one, so you can check you're incorporating the right things in your diet on a regular basis:
    http://www.vegetarian.org.uk/vvfshop...hp?category=93

    Also this link gives some sources of nutrients so again you can check you're eating 1 or 2 things out of each group regularly:
    http://www.vrg.org/nutshell/vegan.htm#nut
    .

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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Hello - Happy New Year, and congratulations on the best decision you ever made!

    Hemlock's right that your dark green leafies are really important for good health - not just for vegans, but for everyone. I found that when I turned vegan my tastes gradually changed, and I cooked more foods from scratch, and I tried new recipes and ideas from websites and vegan cookery books - and so the range and diversity of the plant-based foods I ate gradually increased without me really thinking about it. Also, some foods that I thought I wouldn't like much, or had only had prepared one way (badly) such as brussels sprouts, I had different ways in vegan restaurants or when I ate food that other vegans had made, and it made me change my mind.

    In other words - don't panic, or think to yourself "Argh! Now I'm vegan I've got to eat cabbage!", just ease into it and stay open minded.

  5. #5
    NimbyDagda's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Thanks for the welcome. I think I might be having a lot of soup for a while, as I discovered today that in soup, I can eat a lot of veg I usually don't like, maybe it will help me acquire the taste for them. I have also bought some oriental leaves like Kai Lun that I haven't tried before, which I plan to try tonight, maybe I will like them.

  6. #6
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Hello - there are a few tips on the web for persuading children to eat vegetables, e.g. here http://www.ivillage.co.uk/food/fruit...65813,00.html; maybe you could try them on yourself. Disguising the veg in tomato sauce might help but I doubt if arranging them to form a face would

    Your idea of trying different things to see what you like is probably best though.

  7. #7
    glovesforfoxes
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Quote harpy View Post
    I doubt if arranging them to form a face would
    Aww I didn't think of that.. I'll have to give it a try if the only thing in the house is cabbage!

  8. #8
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Maybe you could try something like this, glovesforfoxes

  9. #9
    NimbyDagda's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    So, I had some measured success. I made a stir-fry with Mange-Tout, Suger-Snap Peas, Broccoli, Peasprout, Beansprout, Kai Lun and Carrot. It wasn't too bad, in fact the worst part was the rice as it was a bit bland, need to think of something to do to put a bit of flavour in.

    Anyway, thanks for the responses everyone.

  10. #10
    Making changes Est's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Tamari! I drench all my stir frys in it - love the flavour. Better than soy sauce IMO and adds taste to the rice
    .

  11. #11
    helen105281
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    I always cooks rice in vegetable stock, maybe you do that already though.

  12. #12
    glovesforfoxes
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Harpy, that pic is awesome! New background? I think so!

    For stirfrys, I'm a big fan of the pineapple cashew quinoa stirfry from Veganomicon. Cheap, easy & quick to make, a really whole, nutritious meal & absolutely gorgeous.. I use soy sauce, toasted sesame oil, & use the pineapple juice from the tin to cook the quinoa in. Sooo good. Not so much a fan of tamari, it's a bit too overpowering, but maybe I just went wrong in using it the same way as soy sauce :/ Anyway, the recipe is highly adaptable. I usually throw in some chopped mushroom, couple of peppers, beansprouts if I have 'em, & whatever I have in that's green

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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Makes everything in the world taste good = more gaaaarlic!

  14. #14
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    I find that if you make your veg stir-fry juicy enough, then the juice soaks into the rice and flavours it. I usually add sherry and soy sauce of some kind and possibly a drop of water if the vegetables aren't exuding enough. (And I start the stir-fry off with garlic and ginger which also gets into the sauce.)

  15. #15

    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Quote harpy View Post
    Maybe you could try something like this, glovesforfoxes
    woah, that's just freaky!

    Quote Ruby Rose View Post
    Makes everything in the world taste good = more gaaaarlic!
    Agreed, I am addicted to garlic, definitely a great asset to lots of dishes.

    For rice- cooking it in veg stock is great, or once cooked, add a pinch of vegetable bouillon powder, black pepper, herbs and if you have it Engevita (yeast flakes), also although a mild flavour, adding half a teaspoon of turmeric to the water gives colour and a nice taste.

    A good way to get the dark green veg into your diet is to fry some garlic and onion, then add the chopped spinach/kale/chard etc, add a tiny bit of water and cover, simmer until cooked, then add some nutmeg and black pepper and give it a good stir. This is how I got myself eating these veg, and am hooked now! Also adding a bit of 'cream' makes it even tastier.

    Don't stress too much about whether you are eating all the right things- like others have said the dark green veg are really important, but as long as you eat lots of different (preferably in season) veg all year round, and a varied diet in general, you'll be fine.

    Good luck with it all

    xxxx

  16. #16
    Cake Fairy Cherry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Quote NimbyDagda View Post
    So, I had some measured success. I made a stir-fry with Mange-Tout, Suger-Snap Peas, Broccoli, Peasprout, Beansprout, Kai Lun and Carrot. It wasn't too bad, in fact the worst part was the rice as it was a bit bland, need to think of something to do to put a bit of flavour in.

    Anyway, thanks for the responses everyone.

    That sounds incredibly healthy! I know vegans who won't even touch anything green on principal!

    edit: oh, and I agree with Harpy about the soy sauce and ginger and garlic.

  17. #17

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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Quote NimbyDagda View Post
    I ask because although I love legumes, grains and fruits but when it comes to vegetables I am a bit more picky, I like most root vegetables, but most others especially leafy green vegetables and salad items(the ones that are actually good for you) make me wretch.

    Do people have any suggestions for sneakily incorporating new vegetables into my diet in ways that my gag reflex won't spot?
    Curry!

    Indian or Thai curries are great for "hiding" vegetables you don't like. And you can put virtually anything in them. We normally buy those tubs of Thai curry paste which work out at about 10p per portion (watch out for the ones that contain shrimp paste, though). If you buy the individual Indian spices it works out incredibly cheap, too.

    Some frozen veg work extremely well in curries: cauliflower, spinach, peas, sweetcorn, and so on.

    Other veg that works includes: cucumber (really!), marrow, carrot, potato, aubergine, pretty much any root vegetable, and so on.

    If calories aren't an issue then add tinned coconut cream - it's just fantastic.

  18. #18
    Blueberry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Variety in Vegetable Intake

    Although I am a newbie too, I have had to hide spinach, chard and kale for years in my kids food. I find the easiest way is to just add it to the final minutes of a risotto, or a curry. Chard is really nice stirred into a risotto. Now my kids will eat leafy greens on the plate as they know they've been eating it since weaning!
    Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet. ~Albert Einstein

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