T Nation

Help Learning to Like Veggies

Hello,

First posting, so here it goes. I have been reading and searching long enough and it’s time to ask my question(s).

First some info:

  • came to the mid 30’s (34) realization I need to change things
  • 253lbs, 6’2", no exercise, 30% BF, little LBM, slightly high BP, slightly high cholesterol
  • tried to learn everything I could about nutrition first. Read ‘Eat To Live’ by Dr. Fuhrman (all veggie Dr), read ‘YOU on a Diet’ by Dr. Oz (Oprah fame - wife had book) and then John Berardi’s ‘The Metabolism Advantage’ (and found T-Nation!)
  • joined gym, now doing weights 3 times and cardio 2-3 times per week (personal trainer for weights initially so I can get form correct)
  • gym provided a nutritionist so I used the opportunity
  • started food log and realized I made the usual mistake by lowering calorie intake to lose weight and I was down to only 1000 calories some days. Currently up to 2200-2400
  • trying to clean up diet mostly following Berardi’s direction from book (also have Gourmet Nutrition)

Now the question:
Looking for suggestions on getting more veggies. You see I was historically a meat and potatoes eater. I like carrots, peas, green beans and corn but that’s most of them that I can think of.
My wife made me a salad and after 50min I had 4 bites by force. Tried cauliflower the other night and had the dry heaves at the table and almost spewed on my plate. I’m not the type to just force myself to choke something down.
I have seen the other posts on making protein shakes with veggies where they say ‘you won’t taste it’. Well I tried them and certainly tasted the veggies (broccoli mostly) and it was nasty!
I have tried or looked at alot of Berardi’s recipes and usually find something that I can’t swallow (literally).

So I am looking for other veggie dis-likers who can help me find new good ways to get the nutrients that I know I can use in the veggies. Or should I just keep eating the veggies I like until I turn into a carrot or bean?!

BTW the nutritionist had a strange (in my eyes) plan to deal with this lack of veggies by adding alot of grain based stuff to my diet as (or so it seems) calorie filler. Needless to say with these grain products come a bunch of carbs I don’t need. I have yet to go back and ask about this now that I know a bit more.

Any thoughts/comments welcome.

Thanks

oh my…

If you find something in Berardi’s recipes you cannot stand, do not eat it.

Brussel sprouts are evil.

The secret for vegetables IMHO is fat. Yes, fat. Add a little butter and salt to frozen vegetables and microwave them, it should at last be bearable and when you low carb you need fat anyway.

Fry a little cubed ham or bacon with butter and mix this with veggies => even better!

A salad does not have to be all vegetables and leaves, add tuna, eggs olives, um, learn to make a salad.

In other words, you cannot cook and this is part of body building and a healthy lifestyle in general.

If you do learn however how to treat meat , one or two veggie recipes and a few salads you are waaayy ahead of everyone whose whole backup plan is McDonalds.

PS: I question the masculinity of everyone using cooking sprays. I not only use butter but butterschmalz.

Plus, I think it was broccoli AND apple in a shake the two flavours seem to offset each other.

I have no idea though, let us know.

make sure you cook the veggies to amke them taste like less of anything and use other things to eat with them.

Try spinach (fresh and frozen) and all different types of veggies until you find ones you like. Try kale too.

cook veggies up in eggs and slow cooked meals like stews and shit.

-chris

Visit your nearest Italian friend and have his grandmother make you some spinach or zuccini or broccoli rabe or peppers and onions or tomato and cucumber salad…fuck, i’ll be back later.

[quote]IL Cazzo wrote:
Visit your nearest Italian friend and have his grandmother make you some spinach or zuccini or broccoli rabe or peppers and onions or tomato and cucumber salad…fuck, i’ll be back later.[/quote]

yes. what il cazzo is saying is learn how to select quality food and treat it with love.


[center]Photo: Grilled Vegetable Salad
with Balsamic Vinegar and Fresh Basil[/center]

Wow…you are exactly the person I love to meet. I believe I can help you learn to love vegetables.

Take a look at this thread and see if there is anything that you may be interested in trying.

http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1498939

Also, there’s a list of seasonal veggies on this thread:
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1524126

And a list here also of just fruits and veggies:
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1517717

I would love for you to pick maybe one or two to try this week and I could work with you to make some recipes that will make your veggies full of great flavor and cooked to perfection. Then you won’t have to choke them down, you can learn to LOVE them.

Remember you don’t have to start with the strongest flavors of veggies like broccoli or brussle sprouts, try starting with some milder ones first like nappa cabbage, zucchini, yellow squash or colored peppers. If you need help with that let me know and I can come up with a good list of mild vegetables.

I agree with what a few other members said that your vegetables don’t have to be eaten raw in a salad all by themselves. They can be combined into a “salad” with grilled chicken, fish or beef and some great dresssings. They can be made into soups, or cooked into stews. My favorite way to cook them is to marinate them and then grill them. I even add veggies to my meatloaf just to get in lots of fibre and different colors.

Just PM me if you want me to help you…
~cheffie

[quote]Chef Lisa Marie wrote:
[center]Photo: Grilled Vegetable Salad
with Balsamic Vinegar and Fresh Basil[/center]

Wow…you are exactly the person I love to meet. I believe I can help you learn to love vegetables.

Take a look at this thread and see if there is anything that you may be interested in trying.

http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1498939

Also, there’s a list of seasonal veggies on this thread:
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1524126

And a list here also of just fruits and veggies:
http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=1517717

I would love for you to pick maybe one or two to try this week and I could work with you to make some recipes that will make your veggies full of great flavor and cooked to perfection. Then you won’t have to choke them down, you can learn to LOVE them.

Remember you don’t have to start with the strongest flavors of veggies like broccoli or brussle sprouts, try starting with some milder ones first like nappa cabbage, zucchini, yellow squash or colored peppers. If you need help with that let me know and I can come up with a good list of mild vegetables.

I agree with what a few other members said that your vegetables don’t have to be eaten raw in a salad all by themselves. They can be combined into a “salad” with grilled chicken, fish or beef and some great dresssings. They can be made into soups, or cooked into stews. My favorite way to cook them is to marinate them and then grill them. I even add veggies to my meatloaf just to get in lots of fibre and different colors.

Just PM me if you want me to help you…
~cheffie[/quote]

You are a great resource and always have nice pictures. Are you making a book?

I try and do this once a day:

Take a bunch of frozen veggie’s and microwave them.

Add rosemary, basil and oregano if I want seasoning. Sometimes salt and pepper.

Add olive oil if I’m craving fat.

Add protein (if I do I usually ditch the olive oil) if I’m craving protein, and that’s it.

The vegetables I’ve been eating are green peas, sugar snap peas, brussel sprouts, spinach and green beans. I usually pick 2-3 and make a big plate, then eat.

Works for me and I’ve had a tough time in the past with getting veggie’s in.

Hello Again,

Thanks for the thoughts and comments.

orion: It was Apple and Broccoli and it wasn’t good (1 sip made it down). I then tried to add some other ‘masking agents’ and it didn’t get any better :slight_smile:

As a side note the salad I tried did have chicken in it with a olive oil and balsamic vinegar home made dressing. I liked the dressing and ate all the chicken :slight_smile: And I basically try each veggie both raw and in some cooked state (if applicable)

Lately I have been having 2 chicken breasts grilled sliced and added to a sauce pan, add in 2 cups of green beans and 1-1.5 cups of organic tomatoe pasta sauce and let simmer. So I am not hopeless on veggies. It’s just my repertoire is just a bit lacking :slight_smile: And the veggies I like isn’t a long list.

Chef Lisa: Thanks, I will take a look at the links and get back to you. I will admit the picture of the Grilled Salad is appealing to the eyes but that’s about it :slight_smile:

Anyhow, I’ll reread this tonight once I am home and I have to go shopping anyhow so I’ll grab some new things and report back.

Thanks

Well start trying to find things you can stand then. Move to green peppers, spinach, and broccoli slowly. Just remember that these things don’t taste bad, most of them don’t taste like anything!

Much of people’s tastes are determined by texture as well as the actual taste of the food.

Try what you can to change the texture of a veggie. boil, fry, grill, steam, raw, etc. they all come out with a different texture. Try cooking the broc you tried to make your shake with, and then let it cool and then put it in your shake, (the broc will lose the bitterness when you steam).

Give it a shot. If you have to, try supplementing with some sort of Greens supp.

I can’t believe you can taste veggies in shakes! I don’t like spinach, so I always hide it behind other food:

  • In shakes: Usually I blend together frozen mixed fruits, frozen berries, strawberry protein powder and frozen spinach (with water). I add quite a bit of spinach, but I swear I cannot taste it.

  • In food: For breakfast I’ll cut up a sausage or some bacon, fry it with onions and red/green peppers…and some frozen spinach, then when they’re cooked I’ll crack open 2-3 eggs and mix it all up until the eggs are cooked. If I taste anything, it’ll be the onions and peppers, but not the spinach. Funnily enough, I hated onions and peppers as a kid.

This is what I do with spinach, because I really can’t bear the taste. As for other vegetables, I suppose there are many methods, but I think there is only one way to really get to like them, even crave them: Go on the Velocity Diet.

Seriously, during and after this diet I have been craving salads and vegetables like a goat. Eating low carb has probably helped a lot too.

Side (anal) note: Potatoes and corn are not vegetables.

[quote]Miserere wrote:
As for other vegetables, I suppose there are many methods, but I think there is only one way to really get to like them, even crave them: Go on the Velocity Diet.[quote]

Truth

:wink:

[quote]Pauli D wrote:
Miserere wrote:
As for other vegetables, I suppose there are many methods, but I think there is only one way to really get to like them, even crave them: Go on the Velocity Diet.

Truth

;)[/quote]

I don’t think the OP has to go with any drastic diet at this point just to learn to like vegetables. But, I do agree that doing the V-Diet does make you crave fresh vegetables like mad! That’s the truth fer shur…

I think he can start out with some mellow flavors of veggies and start eating them with a few meals a day. Adding some fresh herbs, spices, and citrus zests to his vegetables will help them taste better to his palate and make them more desireable.

Also, I think applying proper cooking techniques will help him. Trying to thow a bunch of vegetables into a blender with his shake, I think that’s a little hard core for a non vegetable lover.

I have also found that as I cut out premade sauces, sugar, starchy carbs (except around training) and other pre packaged foods I start craving fresh vegetables more.

I agree that potatoes and corn are more starchy carbs than they are vegetables. I would stick with lower carb vegetables if you are trying to lower your body fat.

Go on the Velocity Diet. If you don’t start craving vegetables, then you are hopeless.

[quote]Pauli D wrote:
Miserere wrote:
As for other vegetables, I suppose there are many methods, but I think there is only one way to really get to like them, even crave them: Go on the Velocity Diet.

Truth

;)[/quote]

fer real here. I’m on day 15 of the Velocity diet and I would non-lethally stab up to 2 people for that grilled veggie salad or any of the Itai stuff that Il caz mentioned. The thing I am looking forward to most is my fresh spinach.

Of course, I am a poor case study. I loved all food before the VD. The only things I didn’t eat were soy shit, chocolate (yuk) and glue (I loved the white elmers stuff for about a year. It has sugar and seriously tastes like… awesome.

Then the doctor told me I didn’t make any poo-poo’s because I eat too much paste. So I quit cold turkey and I’ve been a non-glue eater since the beginning of grade 1. It’s been a long, hard road).

-chris

I definitely feel your pain. Fruits I can eat as if they are going out of style, but veggies have been a tougher road. I started grilling red peppers when I would grill my chicken. Not too bad.

I also found if I am making say a pasta sauce, I can blend in the blender some cut up red peppers with a can of stewed tomatoes and then add that to the sauce and you can’t even tell they are in there.

If eating steamed broccoli, lots and lots of lemon help mask the taste. You can also add in the sauce some chopped spinach, but it has to be small pieces.

My favorite is to take some ground turkey breast meat, place in a bowl, add some fresh spinach leaves torn into small pieces and add to the bowl with a sprinkle of oatmeal and an egg. Then mix together very well, and then form patties, and grill. Never know the spinach was in there. Hope these help!

Isaac

Hello,

For those saying the Velocity Diet will make me want/like veggies, I’m not so sure I’m up for the VD. I can see it being easier for a single dude in an apartment where he empties the house of other things.

I would prefer to find healthy food for the whole family (wife, son of 3y and daughter 1y) rather than sit down to a shake. Changing your diet and life habits is hard enough with support but I think the VD diet might be hard to be supported by my family at the moment :slight_smile:

I’m going to try different cooking methods and grilling etc hopefully this weekend. Both my kids are sick with a cold so evening cooking right now is a PITA.

I have tried to explain this next comment to others and they look strange at me or tell me how sad it is. People who state they love Chef Lisa Marie’s recipes might wonder how it’s possible.

I eat food to live, I don’t dislike food but I don’t love food either. I have never really had a favorite food that I can remember. There is no food that I crave when I am hungry. There are those of you who will tell me it’s because I don’t cook them correctly or I cook badly flavour-wise etc.

My ‘just eat to eat’ feelings have lasted as long as I can remember and I have tried foods from restraunts which are raved about, I have followed recipes and I still have the same feeling. Others will say ‘then you should be able to eat anything’ but just because I eat to eat doesn’t mean that I don’t react to tastes and textures

shrug I don’t know, just trying to describe it to the best I can. It’s not that I don’t want to try and don’t want to change :slight_smile: But at least here I seem to get helpful direction more time than not (so far)

Maybe I’ll try the VD after all, at least for a while all I need to do is mix shakes :wink: (just kidding)

Thanks, Jeff

[quote]J_D_W wrote:
Hello,

For those saying the Velocity Diet will make me want/like veggies, I’m not so sure I’m up for the VD. I can see it being easier for a single dude in an apartment where he empties the house of other things.

I would prefer to find healthy food for the whole family (wife, son of 3y and daughter 1y) rather than sit down to a shake. Changing your diet and life habits is hard enough with support but I think the VD diet might be hard to be supported by my family at the moment :slight_smile: [/quote]

I agree with you and I think there is no reason for you do do such a drastic diet just to change your eating habits to what you want them to be when you aren’t on a diet. It’s not like you are looking to shed bf quickly for a competition or something. You are trying to develop lifestyle changes and that will just take baby steps.

[quote]
I’m going to try different cooking methods and grilling etc hopefully this weekend. Both my kids are sick with a cold so evening cooking right now is a PITA.

I have tried to explain this next comment to others and they look strange at me or tell me how sad it is. People who state they love Chef Lisa Marie’s recipes might wonder how it’s possible.

I eat food to live, I don’t dislike food but I don’t love food either. I have never really had a favorite food that I can remember. There is no food that I crave when I am hungry. There are those of you who will tell me it’s because I don’t cook them correctly or I cook badly flavour-wise etc.

My ‘just eat to eat’ feelings have lasted as long as I can remember and I have tried foods from restraunts which are raved about, I have followed recipes and I still have the same feeling. Others will say ‘then you should be able to eat anything’ but just because I eat to eat doesn’t mean that I don’t react to tastes and textures

shrug I don’t know, just trying to describe it to the best I can. It’s not that I don’t want to try and don’t want to change :slight_smile: But at least here I seem to get helpful direction more time than not (so far)

Maybe I’ll try the VD after all, at least for a while all I need to do is mix shakes :wink: (just kidding)

Thanks, Jeff[/quote]

So, Jeff you may never love the flavors of the foods you eat. That I do find sad but, hey, work with what you have, and know your limitations. Most taste for foods is developed when you are young and if you weren’t exposed to different flavors and textures then you will have a bit harder time. But, it certainly isn’t something you have to give up on. Good for you for trying different things and getting good suggestions to help you find a way to improve.

You really should look at this in maybe small steps. Obviously you are trying to shed some weight and improve your ranges for your health. So, why don’t you start with eliminating starchy carbs except after your workouts. Eliminate sugars and any drinks with calories. That maybe a good first step for you and you will probably see some good results with just that.

Then next step would be to try and set up a good eating schedule where you are eating every 3 hours or so with some protein in each meal. Maybe add some fresh fruits to your first 3 meals and some good fats like olive oil, avocado, walnuts, or flax oil to your last 3 meals. Try to get one serving of beans a day and maybe try some different vegetables each week added to any of your meals.

Maybe once you start seeing results from your plan it will motivate you more to try different things and possibly your attitude about food will begin to change over time. But, even if it never does, you are on the right path by getting help and advice and trying to improve!

Keep up your great work and keep looking for new and different things to excite your palate!