A vegan diet, the more restrictive cousin of a vegetarian diet (no meat or dairy), is becoming increasingly popular, with vegan restaurants popping up across the country and lines of packaged vegan foods showing up on grocery store shelves. While this eating style is often naturally lower in fat and calories than the average American diet, due to its emphasis on fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, going vegan doesn’t guarantee weight loss. In fact, it could actually cause weight gain if you’re not careful, according to Rachel Begun, MSRD, registered dietitian and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
“No matter what dietary plan you follow, whether or not it’s healthy or good for weight loss depends on nutritional value, portion sizes, and overall calorie intake,” she says. Here are five foods common in a vegan diet that have the potential to pack on pounds.