I am currently trialling the Slimming World method of losing weight. I know from past experience it works really well as a meat eater but how does it work when you are following a vegan diet? I’m hoping it does because I have a significant amount of weight to lose.
One of the first things I have noticed is that you need to be a lot more inventive with your food when following the plan as a vegan. Slimming World is very meat and dairy heavy. They seem to love their yogurts and their quark. Both of these are dairy products and therefore I don’t eat them. Most vegan milks can be used as a healthy extra A, and some of them let you have more than you could with the dairy version. There are no vegan yogurts that are free to eat on the slimming world plan, although thankfully they aren’t too many syns. Vegan cheese can’t be used as a healthy extra either so if I fancy a bit of cheese on my jacket potato I need to syn it.
These are the negative sides but I’m starting to see that there are many positive parts. A lot of the meat substitutes are free or low syn. Linda McCartney sausages range from free to 0.5 syns. You can get syn free vegan mince and the new vegan range from Quorn is either free or low in syns as well.
Plus most of the free foods that are meant to make up the bulk of your diet when following Slimming World are naturally vegan anyway. These foods include:
Even before Slimming World the vast majority of my diet came from these foods anyway. I’ve just had to adapt the way I cook with them. I can’t use coconut milk in my curries anymore as it’s high syn and I use frylight instead of oil when cooking. My family are beginning to love Slimming World chips as well, especially when I cook them in rosemary and garlic.
The challenges for me are the same as I would face if I was a meat eater. I drink too much wine, eat too many junk foods (crisps are my weakness!) and I don’t do enough exercise. Whether I was a vegan or not I would need to address these issues to lose weight.
So does Slimming World work as a vegan? It’s still early days but so far I would say yes. There are enough meals out there to be able to enjoy different foods every day but you might need to be a bit more organised and inventive. You also need to be willing to use some of your precious syns for yogurts and cheese if you want to keep these in your diet.