Vegetarian diet is one that is plant-based and does not contain any meat products. As a strict vegetarian, you may not consume any type of animal by-products at all which includes dairy, eggs and honey.
There are a couple vegetarian sub-types. As an example, one is known as a Ovo-lacto Vegetarian and these people do not eat meat but do consume some animal by-products like dairy and eggs. The other vegetarian sub-type is known as lacto-vegetarian and their diet includes vegetables as well as dairy products.
A vegetarian is a person who is classified according to their animal meat restrictions,plus other omissions or additions that they may follow in their diet.
Studies have been done that have shown there are benefits of a vegetarian diet. The benefit is that a vegetarian will have a lower risk of coronary artery disease, obesity, cancer and hypertension.
If you want to become a vegetarian, you only need to change your eating patterns by sticking to a fruit and vegetable lifestyle. There are vegetarians who consider themselves animal rights advocates and their diet only represents one aspect of this belief structure.
Should you plan to change to a vegetarian diet, then you need to remember that key dietary needs formerly obtained from animal sources will be still available to you. These sources come from learning which plant, nut or grain product you will need to consume in order to get the nutrients needed for your body.
Preferred sources of calcium has been milk and milk products, however, the effectiveness of these sources are being questioned by many.
For a vegetarian, this really isn’t a problem since they can obtain their calcium through eating dark green, leafy vegetables. There has been an increasing belief that this form of calcium is more readily absorbed by the body.
NOTE– Calcium, does play a major role in keeping the bones healthy plus regulating several muscle and nerve functions. Most of that absorbed calcium is stored in your bones and teeth. It is very important to ensure that your body has sufficient calcium intake because a deficiency, will cause your body to leech calcium from your bones to carry out other vital functions of your body.
Some examples of vegetables that are rich in calcium are spinach, collard, and kale.
There are many people who believe that a vegetarian will not get enough protein in their diet if they deny themselves meat products. However, if you choose the right sources like and nuts, fruits and vegetables etc., your body need never be deprived of the protein it needs.
A few examples of vegetables that are rich in protein are, Avocado, asparagus, beet greens, spinach and peas.
For a vegetarian, one of the most essential nutrients needed for the efficient forming and function of hemoglobin is iron and it serves as an oxygen carrier in your blood. By having a deficiency of iron intake into the body, you can become susceptible to getting anemia, and, this condition is more common in women and children.
Most vegetarians, do have satisfactory levels of iron in their body and a part reason for this is because their diet contains vitamin C which encourages iron absorption. There are many vegetables favored by vegetarians that have high levels of available dietary iron.
A few of these vegetables sources that contain high levels of iron and vitamin C are broccoli, bok-choy and tomatoes.
Omega 3 fatty acids
Omega 3 fatty acids are acids that are much needed for many functions and processes in our body. These fatty acids help control blood clotting and aid in the formation of healthy cell membranes. Recommended daily intake of omega-3 fatty acids varies from source to source. A large majority of nutritionists and medical experts also agree that the more omega-3 fatty acids a vegetarian can consume, the better health wise it will be for the vegetarian.
A vegetarians source of omega-3 fatty acids include soybean, flax seed, walnuts, Brussels sprouts, kale and spinach.
Other key nutrients that must be included in a vegetarians daily diet are vitamins D and B12 including the minerals zinc and iodine. These are all readily available from non-animal sources. To maintain peak nutritional health, a vegetarian’s diet will usually incorporate grains, legumes, nuts, vegetables and fruits.