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What is a Vegetarian Diet, What Are The Benefits, And What Do You Eat ?

 

What is a Vegetarian Diet, What Are The Benefits, And What Do You Eat ?

What is a Vegetarian Diet, What Are The Benefits, And What Do You Eat ?


Different Labels For Vegetarian


There are different definitions of 'being vegetarian' for different people.


There is ovo-vegetarian - When you do not eat meat but you still eat eggs.


There is lacto-vegetarian - When you do not eat meat or eggs but you eat dairy products.


There is Lacto-ovo vegetarian - When you eat eggs and dairy products but still do not eat meat.

There is Pesce-Vegetarian - When you eat eggs, dairy, and fish, but no other flesh of animals.


And of course if you don't eat eggs, dairy, meat, fish, then you are a vegan.


I personally was a Lacto-ovo vegetarian since the age of 14. Now I'm a Lacto-vegetarian - working my way to vegan and raw.


Benefits of a Vegetarian Diet


  1. More energy - You will notice the energy right away. This is because you are not wasting time trying to digest cooked meat and have more time to digest easily digested foods. Of course the closer to vegan you are, the more this will be true.
  2. The findings in the China Study (a must read book by the way) point towards greater health benefits when less percentage of animal-based foods are consumed.
  3. More fiber in your diet - This helps with your bowel health including hemorrhoids and diverticular disease. It lowers your bad cholesterol, controls your blood sugar levels, and aids in weight loss and maintenance.
  4. No more fear food - There are studies that show that when animals are fearful, the adrenaline rush releases epinephrine and steroids into the bloodstream, among other stress hormones. This is passed on to the meat eater who then eats the variety of toxins that have pooled into the blood.
  5. If you eat mostly a plant based diet then your are eliminating a lot of saturated fat - known to cause heart problems and cardiovascular disease.
  6. Lower risk of cancer - A plant based diet is high in vitamins and antioxidants. Antioxidants have been shown to slow or possibly prevent the development of cancer.
  7. Just as the vitamins and antioxidants are good for preventing disease, they are also good for a healthier skin.


These are a few of the benefits of a vegetarian diet. But I would venture to say that they are all you need to gravitate towards this kind of living. More energy, feel healthier, look healthier, and prevent disease are all pretty big reasons to replace a meat based diet with a more plant based diet.


Starting a Vegetarian Diet


What is a Vegetarian Diet, What Are The Benefits, And What Do You Eat ?


If you don't think you will be able to completely stop eating meat - right now, then start eliminating meat from your diet. For instance, eat two or three strictly vegetarian meals per week. Then increase it every week by one meal.


You do not lack for flavor or taste on a vegetarian diet. In fact, many people think that it's more tasty then a meat filled diet. My Italian husband, who grew up worshipping meat, went vegetarian on his own. He instantly had more energy and felt better, but he also found that he enjoyed food more. In fact, he has surpassed me and eats a vegan diet now. He gets giddy when he thinks about what to cook.


They offer a wide variety of 'meat like' products. You can have a 'hot dog' or 'hamburger' or 'scrambled eggs' or 'cheese' or 'milk' or anything else you can think of. Most of these products are soy based but they taste really good and will fill any meat void you have, while being way healthier for you. Just remember that there are different products out there and if you try a soy cheese, and hate it, it doesn't mean that they all taste like that. Give another 'cheese' a shot and you may find one that you love.


Add all of those substitutes for meat to your regular food like vegetables, fruits, nuts, and desserts - and you will find that you can eat tons on a vegetarian diet. The only thing you don't eat is actual meat, and you won't miss it!

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