A vegetarian diet consists of meals made entirely of plants, such as nuts, seeds, grains, vegetables, fruits, and legumes. Vegetarians come in numerous forms, but the most common definition is someone who does not consume meat.
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People should, however, be aware of which items to avoid and which to include in their diet in order to guarantee that they are satisfying their nutritional needs. Here’s what to expect if you decide to go vegetarian, as well as the risks and how to make the change.
Type of vegetarian diets
According to Medical News Today, there are various sorts of vegetarian diets to choose from, each with its own set of foods to accept or prohibit. The following are the most common types:
- A basic vegetarian diet excludes meat, poultry, and fish from the diet.
- A partial vegetarian will exclude most meats from their diet but will include either fish or poultry.
- According to Meatless Farm, a flexitarian primarily eats a vegetarian diet. Where they differ from other vegetarians is that they will occasionally eat small amounts of meat, poultry, eggs, and fish.
- A vegan will avoid consuming any animal products, including meat, fish, poultry, dairy, eggs, and honey.
Health benefits of being a vegetarian
When a vegetarian diet is followed appropriately, it has numerous advantages. According to Health Line, you’re unlikely to gain many of the benefits of this diet if you skip meat but consume primarily processed breads and pastas, too much sugar, and very little vegetables and fruits. Among these advantages are:
- Promotes bone health
- Reduces cancer risk
- Good for heart health
- Prevents type 2 diabetes
- Lowers blood pressure
- Decreases asthma symptoms
What to avoid
According to Everyday Health, severe vegetarians eschew poultry, fish, and meat, but there is some leeway depending on the sort of vegetarian you are. As an ovo-vegetarian, for example, you can eat eggs and as a pescatarian, you can eat fish.
Vegetarian diets are popular for a variety of reasons. Eating vegetarian is a way for some people to be healthier or avoid hormones found in animal meals. Others eat this way because of religious beliefs, animal rights, or environmental concerns.