I started the Esselstyn Diet this week and I'm on day 7 and feel very weak. I'm concerned about protein because I can't eat great amounts of plants. Are there any suggestions?
Someone already ask for sources of plants proteins. If you feel weak proteins is probably the last suspect. Proteins deficiency happen when there is a calorie deficiency. So eat enough food. Verify your Energy intake(calories) or even water intake. Or it is not linked to your diet.
Don't skip your breakfast maybe. Nuts/avocados/olives have fats so they are more calorie dense. Greens for minerals like calcium etc. Verify that you ate enough iodine too, b12 and sun(vitamin D at least). Sleep well(at least 8h).
Can't think of anything else now.
As a dietitian specializing in plant-based diets, I'm not a huge fan of Esselstyn's diet for several reasons:
1) It's too low in protein for optimal intake of minerals
2) The low fat content can make it more difficult to absorb fat-soluble nutrients
3) It's not very sustainable
As a vegan, it's important to include adequate protein throughout the day to ensure you are meeting needs for minerals like iron and zinc. I would suggest modifying the diet to still be whole-food plant-based with no oil, but allow for whole food sources of fat like nuts, seeds, nut butters, and avocado.
There is also a thread discussing this diet here:
Let me know if you have any other questions!
Susan Macfarlane, MScA, RD
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
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Interesting. I do include those foods, but not large amounts. Is there any other way to boost protein?
Concentrated plant protein includes:
I would consider cooking with chickpea flour, making seitan loaf or muffins, roasting chickpeas or lentils to snack on, and sprinkling pumpkin and sunflower seeds on a variety of different foods.