The calorie count for a serving of meat in accordance with the 500 calorie plan is about 125 calories. Meat is mostly protein with no sugar and very little fat. So our non-meat substitute should be very similar to this. Increase according to the calorie amount that is for you.
For those that consume dairy, choices are skim milk and fat free cottage cheese are approved. The skim milk is an “okay” substitute. There is natural sugar in milk and that could effect your progress. If the thought of cottage cheese is not very appealing, combine it with your serving of fruit. Then have a breadstick and veggie meal separately if you prefer.
For those that consume eggs, egg whites are approved (not the yolk!). Each whole egg is about 60 calories, 30 coming from the white and 30 coming from the yolk. That means 4 egg whites would equal 120 calories, 8 egg whites would equal 240 calories and so on.
For those that consume neither dairy nor eggs, a PLAIN milk substitute is approved. Soy, rice, or almond milk is approved. The Vanilla, Chocolate, or other flavored ones are not approved due to their high sugar content.
A straight whey protein powder can be used, but once again, it cannot be flavored or sweetened with sugar. It must be 1 gram of sugar or less and be fat free. Placed in water, these powders can be difficult to choke down. So don’t go out and get the big $75 tub of protein. You may end up throwing it away.
Beans, tofu, meat substitutes, legumes, and traditional sources of protein for vegetarians are discouraged because of their relatively high starch content and may cause you to stall in your progress toward your health goals. Nuts and seeds are also not approved because of their fat/oil content.
And lastly, don’t forget fish, lobster, and shrimp options if this is acceptable.