Tips for Following the OMS Diet

January 15, 2019

OMS Friendly foodChanging your diet can be hard at first, which is why we have compiled a few top tips to help you along the way.

Firstly, what is a plant-based wholefood diet, plus seafood, minimizing saturated fat?

  • Plant-based diets are based on fruits, vegetables, tubers, whole grains, and legumes; excluding all meat (including chicken and fish), dairy products, and eggs. (Plant-based diets are mostly vegan, but vegan diets are not necessarily plant-based).
  • Wholefood diets include foods that are unprocessed and unrefined, or processed and refined as little as possible. Highly refined foods like bleached flour and refined sugar, are discouraged but not completely excluded. Instead, you are encouraged to eat wholegrains and steer away from additives.
  • Seafood – the OMS diet differs from a vegan or plant-based diet as it allows you to eat seafood if you choose to. We do, however, recommend moderating your consumption of oily fish due to its fat content (eat up to three times per week).
  • Minimizing saturated fat – the saturated fat content is why animal fats are excluded on the diet (meat, dairy and egg yolks), along with coconut products, and oils excluding non-heated extra virgin olive oil.

List of allowed foods on our website.

There is so much that you can eat!  Look for recipes and meals based around some of the following

Note: this is not a complete list of what you can and can’t eat – just a guide to get you started

  • Protein: fish, seafood, beans, tofu, avocado, egg white (only), nuts, seeds
  • Helpful hint: Nuts and nut butter should be consumed in moderation
  • Plant-based milks: soya, oat, hemp, pea
  • Helpful hint: Read labels carefully – store bought dairy alternatives can contain unhealthy vegetables oils
  • Carbohydrates: rice, potatoes, pasta, rice noodles, quinoa, couscous, bread, pearl barley, etc
  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Helpful hint: Coconut is not included due to its high saturated fat content
  • Spices, herbs, garlic, onion
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

What recipes can I make?

There are lots of recipes on our website and in the OMS cookbook. Check out our list of cookbooks recommended by OMSers. You can adapt vegan recipes by excluding oil or coconut products.

curryExamples of some delicious recipes you can easily make OMS friendly: ramen noodle soups, pastas, salads, baked potatoes, rice dishes, sushi, egg white omelettes, risottos, flat bread, mezze dips, Buddha bowls, grilled fish, cheese free pizza, homemade veggie burgers, veggie chillis, soups, cauliflower rice, vegetables stews, breakfast cereals, overnight oats, homemade granola, dahls, vegetable or fish curries, smoothies and bean burritos.

There are plenty of websites out there with OMS compliant recipes. Edit vegan or pescetarian recipes to make them OMS compliant. Try searching for ‘fat free’ and ‘wholefoods’ along with ‘pescetarian’ and ‘vegan’ recipes.

Hashtags: #omsfriendly  #overcomingms

Top Tips

  1. Cook by grilling, baking, boiling, poaching or steaming to avoid frying in oil. You can also fry dry in a non-stick pan or cook with a tiny amount water, stock or even tea to prevent sticking.
  2. Batch cook. By making meals in advance and keeping them in the fridge or freezer you can save money and time. Get into the habit of having delicious food options available at all times, which will stop the temptation of unhealthy foods.
  3. Frozen fruit and vegetables are a great, inexpensive option to add more fruit and veg to your diet. Frozen when fresh, they have great nutritional value and can be kept for a longer reducing food waste. Find lots of good tinned options including pre-cooked beans, chopped tomatoes, sweetcorn etc at your local supermarket.
  4. Order a veg box delivery – locally sourced and deliciously fresh boxes provide great nutritional value. Having a fridge that is already stocked with delicious fresh produce will help you to make healthy choices.
  5. Eat seasonally to save money.

Currently in season (January)

summer fruits

Europe:  Apples, Beetroot, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Celeriac, Celery, Chicory, Jerusalem Artichokes, Kale, Leeks, Mushrooms, Onions, Parsnips, Pears, Spring Greens, Spring Onions, Squash, Swedes, Turnips.

US/ Canada: Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, grapefruit, kale, leeks, lemons, oranges, parsnips, rutabagas, tangelos, tangerines, and turnips.

Australia/New Zealand: Asparagus, Beans: Green, Beans: Flat, Beans: Butter, Capsicums, Celery, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Onions, Okra, Peas, Potatoes, Radish, Sweetcorn, Spinach, Tomatoes, Zucchini, Apricots, Avocados, Bananas, Blackberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Strawberries, Cherries, Grapes, Limes, Lychees, Mangoes, Melons, Nectarines, Oranges: Valencia, Passionfruit, Peaches, Pears: , Pineapple, Plums, Rambutans

6. Join your local OMS Circle for encouragement.

7. Meat and cheese contain ‘umami’ flavours which you might crave when changing your diet. Add these flavours to recipes using: miso, mushroom (particularity shiitake), soy sauce, nutritional yeast, fish sauce, marmite or vegemite, celery, ripe tomatoes, darker-fleshed fish (eat in moderation), sea vegetables (e.g. nori), black olives, toasted nuts and seeds and green tea.

Out and about

Japanese food

8. When eating out, check The Happy Cow which has a list of vegan and vegetarian friendly restaurants. Contact restaurants in advance to lay out your requirements. Ask for vegan with fish, excluding oils (except Extra Virgin Olive Oil) and excluding coconut products.

9. Japanese cuisine is a good option for low fat, dairy-free food with lots of seafood. Indian, Thai, Lebanese and Ethiopian cuisines also have good options filled with vegetables and flavour but be careful of the oils.

10. When flying, ask for a Raw Vegetable Meal to ensure that it’s OMS compliant. This is a vegan meal consisting exclusively of raw vegetables and salads.

What are your tips for sticking to the OMS diet?

6 thoughts on ‘Tips for Following the OMS Diet

  1. Great tips for OMS newbies 🙂
    What I do not understand is that you say a plant-based diet is including chicken? Chicken is not recommended on OMS, or did you change your recommendation? Or do you mean plant-based diets in general? But chicken and fish are not plant-based anyhow 😉

  2. Hiya,

    I’m glad you like our tips.

    This article is explaining individually the different elements of the diet (plant-based wholefood diet, plus seafood, minimizing saturated fat). So we have broken down the description into four and described each word, in turn, which combined provide a complete description of the OMS diet.

    Point 1: “Plant-based diets are based on fruits, vegetables, tubers, whole grains, and legumes; excluding meat (including chicken and fish)”. It is in fact saying that a “plant-based diet” excludes *all* meat. All meat includes chicken and fish (which is a point of confusion for some people who do not know about vegetarian, vegan or plantbased diets). We are not advising to eat meat. We are not saying that this alone is a complete description of the OMS diet, which is described in full over all four bullet points.

    Point 3: Later on it goes on to say that “the OMS diet differs from a vegan diet as it allows eating seafood if you choose to. We do, however, recommend moderating your consumption of oily fish due to its fat content.” “Vegan” being used here instead of plant-based, which are slightly different but broadly similar. Eating fish on the OMS diet is a choice as some people choose to follow a completely plant-based or vegan diet.

    So in answer to your question; we are not advocating to eat chicken. It is a vegan/plant-based + seafood diet.

    I have now changed the wording slightly to make the points clear in the article.

  3. Hi Thanks for your article on the OMS diet which I have been following for almost 2 years now, pretty much 100%. My concern is; now I read that oily fish is not recommended and I distinctly remember at the retreat I attended in May 2017 in Australia ‘Salmon’ was highly recommended and about 3 times a week. This now adds not only confusion to everything I’ve been trying to maintain but also an additional hunger. I have struggled to maintain weight, I have a busy and physically demanding lifestyle and am not a kitchen wiz, a need to eat: filling, sating and volumes of food to keep my energy levels up – and now I’m really confused where that will come from if Salmon is off the list – and disappointed that for nearly 2 years I’ve really, really, REALLY stuck to the OMS diet and been proud of myself for sticking to it only to read today that haven’t – I’m really thinking now what’s the point! Further a lot of Indian vegan food has peanuts in it – which we were also advised at the retreat NOT TO EAT due to saturated fat content – as there was only mention of coconut in the article and to ‘eat nuts’ could you please advise what is current position on peanuts and the OMS diet?

  4. Hello Melissa,

    I think you have perhaps misunderstood this blog.

    Nothing has changed with regards to suggestions for the diet, which it sounds like you have a good knowledge of and are following well. This article is aimed at people who are new to the program and trying to make it easy for people to understand as not everyone will have the opportunity to go to a retreat.

    Oily fish is still recommended up to 3 times a week on the OMS diet as you say, in the article it says”We do, however, recommend moderating your consumption of oily fish due to its fat content.” perhaps this is what you are referring to? Moderating here refers to not eating too much, ie not eating more than 3 times a weeks I will add in to make clearer.

    You are still advised to use your own discretion and this is just a basic starter for people before they read the book.

    Not all Indian food will have peanuts in particularly curries you are making at home.

    I will get back to you about your question about peanuts, which are actually legumes not nuts.

  5. You are right Melissa, peanuts are not advocated on OMS: https://overcomingms.org/ms-a-to-z/faqs/diet/eat-nuts/
    They contain a lot of saturated fat and are also high in omega-6.

    From the OMS cookbook page 16:
    “High in omega-6, peanuts are pro-inflammatory, susceptible to toxins and one of the most common food allergens. It is advisable to stay away from them and to replace peanut butter with almond butter (the best alternative) or another nut butter, such as hazelnut, almond or cashew butter. You should also replace peanuts with almonds or, depending on the dish, other types of nut, such as cashews or pistachios, but in smaller amounts. Note: Please be aware that all nuts are high in omega-6 even though they are OMS-safe.”

  6. Hi everyone,

    What you can or cannot eat is only part of following the OMS lifestyle, I personally believe the biggest hurdle is ‘to believe’. To believe this lifestyle does make a difference is extremely important in order to regain your control.

    When I was first diagnosed I had the double vision and truly felt I had this under control. I did improve my eating! But did not elimate the diary or meat etc just ate better. Gave up smoking – truly a good thing but I did not elimate stress and continued to work in a high demanding, stressful management position. So 9 months later I proceeded on sick leave, unable to stand with my feet together, was told I had to get a walker, my left foot dropped, I kept falling,my left arm/hand no longer worked and as with many of us the list goes on.

    Not long after I went on sick leave my mother said she had heard Dr Jelinek talk about OMS. read the website and to be honest I followed it about 80%. We ended up going to NYC and it was difficult with the walker etc. sitting in a diner I said to my husband give me 5 years, I want to be 100% committed to this lifestyle and then come back and walk the Brooklyn bridge unassisted unaided. I also said, I don’t care if you believe or not as long as I believe that’s all that matters.

    So 3 years on, I am no longer with the walker and very soon will not need the walking stick. I am now walking up to 3k’s, my exercising is good and productive. My co ordination with my last arm/hand is improving dramatically, you name it, it has and continues to improve.

    My husband wants to bring the Brooklyn bridge forward due to my improvements – ha ha

    So when someone states when u are out – ‘oh you can’t have that’, you respond with confidence ‘oh I can, I just choose not to’ why because you believe this lifestyle will work.

    Life is good, anything is possible

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