Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness

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 Post subject: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:11 pm 
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Finch

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:42 pm
Posts: 4
Hello.

I found this website and I'm hoping someone can help me.

I'm not a body builder, but I was hoping to start training in this way soon. I have worked out in the past and been an athlete my whole life. Currently, I work in the snowboard industry and try to snowboard everyday and I'm aiming to perform at a very high level.

Right now, however, I am struggling badly with my diet.

I am 24. Vegetarian for the last 10 years. I began a strict vegan diet roughly 8 months ago. Since moving to Japan 3 months ago, I have cut out a lot more from my diet. I cut down added oils, processed foods of all kinds, supplements, and most recently anything with gluten because I discovered a sensitivity to gluten. I have thought that I had a mild lactose intolerance my whole life, but now I'm not sure if that was the gluten sensitivity.

Lately, I have had been fighting chronic fatigue in my muscles (mainly legs), as well as overall depression type feelings and irritability, and just overall weakness.

Most recently, I have been experiencing a distinct brain fog, after meals its strong, as well as lack of visual clarity. I had a random bloody nose the other day, but I'm not sure if that is due to the climate.

I bought some Vitamin D and B12 supplements, but have been weary of them, as I am with all supplements/medications. But I found out they are gluten free, so I am less paranoid to take them. The D is 140 I.U. and B12 is 50 ug.

I thought there must be something else that I was sensitive to, so I started a elimination diet, but with the first meal this morning (avocado/cucumber/banana/slightly boiled veggies in water-carrot/broccoli/cabbage/bok choy) left me with a severe brain fog and overall malaise.

I'm scared of the permanent damage that I might be doing and desperate to the point where I've been seriously considering eating animal products. I've tried to educate myself very seriously on every aspect of diet, but just keep coming up short lately.

I don't have the money, access, or Japanese language skills to visit a specialist, but if it gets any worse I might just head to the nearest hospital and see what happens.

Any thoughts or suggestions might help me determine how to get better. Thank you all so much.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:15 pm 
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Elephant
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Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 4:10 am
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Location: New Jersey, USA
i would venture to guess you arent eating enough, especially if you are a snow boarder! have you lost weight recently? what is your height and weight and what do u eat on a typical day??

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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:34 pm 
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Finch

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:42 pm
Posts: 4
I weigh about 65 kgs and yes have lost weight since moving to japan, about 9 kgs (sorry my scale is in kgs). I'm 5'9'' roughly. There aren't many typical days right now as I've been experiencing all these problems, I try to eat a lot, as much as I can until my stomach is full for three meals and sometimes inbetween meals I snack as well. I was eating less for a while that is when I lost more weight, started chewing more and felt more full. I haven't lost much weight in the last couple weeks, been staying at around 65 kgs. A lot of my belly and overall visual fat has gone away, but I don't look sickly at all, just skinny.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:57 pm 
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Elephant
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Location: New Jersey, USA
9kgs is a lot to lose.... maybe try to eat foods more dense in calories. thats really all i can say without you explaining more. unless its a medical issue?

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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:26 pm 
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Finch

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:42 pm
Posts: 4
thank you so much for the rapid replies.

I'll try to eat more calories and I'm going to take the D and B12 supplements more frequently to see if that helps.

I'll post any changes i experience.

I'm open to any other suggestions as well.

Thank you again


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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 1:19 am 
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Rabbit

Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2011 3:56 am
Posts: 24
Try eating more fruit. And I mean a lot more. That should help with energy. Also consider a vegan meal replacement shake, most are gluten free.

Perhaps you can find an english speaking doctor and get some blood work done.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Mon Feb 13, 2012 12:28 pm 
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Stegosaurus
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Location: San Jose, CA
I'd look for foods that are calorie-dense like nuts, nut butters, dried fruits, avocado, etc. I'm not sure what is readily available where you are.

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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 11:41 pm 
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Finch

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:42 pm
Posts: 4
Thank you everyone for all the help. I'm progressing back to normal health I think.

I think the problem was a lack of calories. I've just been so paranoid of food because it has been making me sick, that I wasn't eating enough and completely draining my whole system.

I think I've narrowed down the foods that give me problems, so I'm cutting out those and eating a lot of everything else.

Thank you again everyone.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 12:00 am 
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Manatee
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Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 11:09 pm
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Location: New York, NY
Eric_S wrote:
I don't have the money, access, or Japanese language skills to visit a specialist, but if it gets any worse I might just head to the nearest hospital and see what happens.


Being vegan and eating clean is a good idea and it sounds like things are getting better for you. If your issues continue go see a doctor. It's your health and it sounds like your livelihood depends on it. Actually all of ours does when you think about it. But you don't want anything to snowball. Yes...I speak from experience. Just had two MRI's last week for old injuries that now hurt like (insert expletive) sometimes.

P.S. You work in the snowboard industry. That's awesome!

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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 2:16 am 
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Rabbit

Joined: Tue Dec 27, 2011 3:56 am
Posts: 24
Eric_S wrote:
Thank you everyone for all the help. I'm progressing back to normal health I think.

I think the problem was a lack of calories. I've just been so paranoid of food because it has been making me sick, that I wasn't eating enough and completely draining my whole system.

I think I've narrowed down the foods that give me problems, so I'm cutting out those and eating a lot of everything else.

Thank you again everyone.


Good to hear!

I think the most common problem when people try a vegan diet is that they just don't consume enough calories.


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 Post subject: Re: Vegan in Crisis
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 6:15 pm 
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Finch

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:06 am
Posts: 1
Hi Eric.
I can relate to almost everything you are experiencing.
I am living in the north of Japan (Niigata) and have been living here for 9 years.
Living here as a Vegan is crazy right!
People think you are suffering form some sort of illness or are doing it for religious reasons. When I ask them why they think it's ok to eat meat, they say they know it's wrong but they can't stop because it's "おいしい" |:/
I'm lucky that my wife is Vegetarian and supports me (Even through my crazy 801010 raw food phase)
Trying to show the world here that Vegan is healthy is hard if you are not ripped, right?
Just know that you are not alone here bro!
Your dizziness maybe because you are under carbed but as you can no doubt see, just buying some peanut butter (natural) quinoa, lentils or oats etc... is IMPOSSIBLE here!
So it is hard to carb up if everything here is crazy expensive, heavily processed or covered in some type or oil, or just non existent!
There is hope however and it is the website http://www.iherb.com.
You can order most things form there that I mentioned above, (Even gluten free rolled oats) but for quinoa, chia seed you HAVE to use ebay.( only way to get about stupid archaic customs) If you are interested pm me and I can give you the ebay user id's I buy from.
I am lucky enough to be friends with a farmer that grows brown rice (as close to organic as you are going to get over here) no animal fertilizer and is featured on SMAPs (boy band) tv culinary show.
http://www.gensenmai.net if you need to have it sent to you or need to know anything than I can help you with that!
The b12 thing is also a concern of mine. I am thinking of ordering some nutritional yeast from herb as it is loaded with protein and b12.
http://www.iherb.com/Frontier-Natural-P ... 30832?at=0
Also here is a page for ordering Kale in japan. They use no chemical spraying either.
http://www.masudaseed.com/
Doctors here won't understand or respect your choices for being vegan and that goes for Tokyo and will make you feel guilty for not consuming animal products, so...yeah scratch that one.
As for vitamin D...lets put it this way, I want to move with my wife and kids to Okinawa :)
All the best and if you need any help with anything please don't hesitate to PM me anytime!
Andy


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