Tosca Reno


Sunday, May 20, 2012

Traci Goes Vegan! Supplements Needed?

Today's Eat-Clean Diet Vegetarian Cookbook guest blogger, Traci Dean, has been with us here at The Eat-Clean Diet for a long time. She has been featured as a Success Story & she also participates often on the Kitchen Table, our online community. Now you can read about her amazing foray into veganism... a new step on her journey to health. Perhaps you can answer some of her questions about supplementation, too!
Traci missing her beloved yogurt!
In the winter of 2010, I began my Eat-Clean journey, with a goal to lose 100 pounds; as of today, I am 5 pounds away! Yay! (I started at 245!).  You can read my Eat-Clean Diet Success Story, which includes losing weight while recovering from a total knee replacement and unable to do anything but walk as exercise.  But that’s an earlier part of my path to a healthier life, and I’d like to talk a bit about walking the Vegan way.

Because I believe there’s a link between heart disease and animal fats, I currently eat only one meal containing meat (it’s hard to eat that many beans for protein!), don’t eat eggs or dairy (God, I miss yogurt!), and rarely cook with oil.

When my stepson first became a raw vegan, I was pretty freaked out; was he getting enough protein, iron, and the essentials you and I take for granted when we eat the ‘typical’ American diet?  So though I don’t eat exactly like him, I am now concerned for myself, too.

Last week I had some blood work done (my cholesterol was finally normal!  AWESOME!) and found out that my B12 and Vitamin D numbers were low. Getting enough of these elements is important when you are a vegan.  Now, I have to do the research and ask myself; do I want to take a supplement, or find those foods that will provide B12 and Vitamin D naturally?

I’ll be checking out everyone’s blog piece, looking to add yummy new recipes that also include what I’m missing because I struggle; I have the heart of a vegan, just not the taste buds of one!

As my stepson likes to say; peace, love, fruit!

Traci, The WalkerLady, one pound at time!


  1. Hi Traci, what an amazing transformation story, and congratulations on your journey to veganism! It's a good idea for anyone, but perhaps especially vegans, to get blood work done every year. Last time my doctor told me my B12 was incredibly high and that I should cut back! I drink fortified soymilk, which is a great source. I'd also suggest fortified almond milk, nutritional yeast (great cheesy flavour!), and fortified cereals (whole grain, no sugar, of course). As a very active vegan, I take a multivitamin formulated for active women. We should be able to get all our nutritional requirements from our diets, but multivitamins provide a 'buffer' in case we miss some. That goes for non-vegans as well!

  2. Thank you Karina! And your comments are so very kind...

    I couldn't agree more and have recently started taking B12 and a multi-vitamin. There are so many ' do we or don't we' out there, but for me, and as we are going through this with my step son because he doesn't take any and had an ' episode' the other night--more panic I think then anything. It still really freaked us out and we are all concerned and trying to get him into an internist for we know his levels are low.

    That being said, I would rather focus on the ' better safe then sorry 'side, for me, it's just better.

    Thank you so much for your helpful hints and your wonderful suggestions--I have heard of nutritional yeast and have yet to try it, in fact, in one of my Eat Clean magazine's foodies I want to try some potato chips made with it! :) So thank you!

    I just think this is a great idea and I love reading these for it's given me so many great ideas!!


  3. Since becoming vegan and mostly since becoming a lot more active I realize just how important it is to eat a wide variety of food to ensure I am getting the right nutrients. I also take a multi vitamin and drink amino acids before, during and after my workouts. A good protein powder like (Vega) is also good for those days you feel you are lacking with the food. We definitely should not rely on supplements but they are good to fill in the gaps and I also feel the help alot when you are more physically active. I can tell when I am lacking with the vitamins because I get very tired and moody. I prefer to get my nutrients from plant food versus supplements though so I do my best to eat clean healthy food at every meal. :0)

    I make a great nutritional yeast cheezy sauce to put over baked tortilla chips for nachos, over baked fries for chili cheeze fries, or over pasta for mac n cheeze. It is so yummy and easy. You can also use it as a base to make broccoli cheedar soup if you like that kind of stuff.

    Fresh and Easy also sells a yummy yogurt make out of almond milk that you can try if you crave yogurt now and then. I don't eat it all the time but it's great when I do want something custardy like yogurt.

    Congrats on your weight loss. I started at 245lbs too. I have a goal to lose 100 lbs as well by December. I have a little over 30 lbs to go. :)

  4. Traci - I loved reading your story.

    I was going to recommend vitamin topical patches - they are sold in health food stores. My daughter's nutrition coach, who studied integrative medicine, recommended them for her. I believe they are all natural and would fit into your lifestyle.

  5. Papi,

    Thank you so much for commenting and your information--would love to learn about the sauce you are speaking of. :)

    I agree about trying to get as much from nature as possible, but between frozen shoulder in both, an atrophied thigh we are just beginning to figure out-a chest issue they are NO idea what is going on and possibly another knee surgery--sigh, working out for me is not always easy! :)

    I did manager to lose weight, even flat on my back because I was determined, still am and I was so lucky that I found Tosca!

    So for me vitamins are helping. I am also a picky eater! LOL--SO I am learning to branch out that is basically why we have gone this route, just to keep me safe in the short term and because my levels were already low.

    You gave me some great ideas though--so thank you! Some wonderful things to try--all this is SO new to me, so I LOVE reading what everyone is doing and what ya'll have had success with, it really helps me. So thank you!

    Sorry I am so late, I am in Texas for my daughter's graduation from highschool! :)

    MAJOR congrats on the weight loss-look how awesome you are doing! I know how hard it is! You are soooo getting there! YOU ROCK~

    Aww thank you Martha! You are so sweet!
    That is a great idea, I have not heard of those so thank you, I will for sure check them out. Everyone has been so kind and helpful!



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