Vegetarian diet: the benefits and what to eat

The vegetarian diet is a societal phenomenon that is on the rise. A vegetarian diet is a dietary regimen that excludes meat and poultry. Vegetarians may also exclude eggs, dairy products, and other animal-derived foods. Some vegetarians choose to avoid all food of animal origin, while others may eat small amounts of meat or poultry. The health benefits of a vegetarian diet are largely unknown, but some experts believe that it may be more healthful than a typical Western diet.

what is a vegetarian diet?

A vegetarian diet is one that does not include meat or poultry. Vegetarians may eat eggs, dairy products, and other types of meat substitutes, but these foods cannot make up the entire diet. The vegetarian diet is a diet based on the exclusion of all foods rich in animal protein (meat and poultry, fish) but nevertheless admitting foods from animals such as eggs, milk, dairy products as well as than honey.

A vegetarian diet can be a healthy way to eat, because it is low in cholesterol and saturated fat. It can also help to prevent food shortages and pollution caused by livestock farming. As you have understood, this diet is based on the consumption of plants (fruits and vegetables), cereals, pulses (lentils, split peas, dried beans, etc.). Another trend is flexitarians or semi-vegetarians , who reduce their meat consumption in favor of fish and vegetable proteins. If it is well designed, it is good for health.

Benefits of the vegetarian diet

There are many benefits to vegetarian diets, both physically and mentally. If properly designed, it is healthy, nutritionally adequate and beneficial for the prevention and treatment of certain diseases, provided it includes milk, dairy products and eggs.

Some of the physical benefits include: reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes; lower blood pressure; and a decreased incidence of stroke. Vegetarians also have a lower risk of developing obesity and chronic diseases such as arthritis. The mental benefits of vegetarianism include: an increased sense of well-being; improved concentration; less anxiety; and better sleep.

Does it make you lose weight?

No not necessarily. Even if there is less overweight in vegetarians because of their sensitivity to observe a healthy diet and lifestyle, as in omnivores everything is a question of balance and proportions. If a vegetarian person eats too much fat or too much sugar, they too will be exposed to weight gain.

Veg diet is for whom

For all those who must reduce the intake of proteins accompanied by saturated fats such as chronic renal insufficiency, it is particularly indicated. Given its richness in dietary fiber, it is ideal for helping to fight against constipation, its low fat intake helps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease Also, it is indicated for all those who are concerned about their well-being. be food, whether by personal conviction or religious reason or for ecological and environmental reasons. Beware, a 2017 study highlights that irritable bowel syndrome is more present in vegetarians and vegans. Avoid if you have irritable bowel syndrome.

Who should avoid veg diet

For many people, a vegan or vegetarian diet is the perfect way to live healthily and sustainably. But there are a few people who should avoid a vegan or vegetarian diet altogether.

Not all vegetarians eat a balanced diet. Some people who are vegetarian do not get enough protein, fiber, or vitamins from their food. A vegetarian diet can be difficult to follow if you have a food allergy or dietary restriction. Not all meat substitutes are healthy.

Elderly people should be careful of this. Aging leads to a decrease in bone density and muscle due to age and inactivity. As a result, the vegetarian diet must be adapted and contain more protein to avoid muscle wasting. Supplements of vitamin B12 and certain minerals have to be added too.

How to replace the meat?

There are many different vegetarian and vegan meal replacements on the market, but which one is best for you? To replace the meat in a vegetarian diet, some people may choose to use tofu or seitan. Others may choose a plant-based burger or wrap. Whatever option you choose, be sure to read the ingredients carefully to make sure there are no animal products included.

However, there are many ways to get the protein that a vegetarian needs without eating meat. One option is to replace meat with plant-based proteins such as beans, peas, nuts, and seeds. These foods are packed with nutrients and are easy to incorporate into a vegetarian diet.

A vegetarian diet can be quite challenging to follow because it lacks the protein found in meat. Meat or fish can be replaced by cereals and pulses at each meal in order to consume enough protein. For ovo-lacto-vegetarians, that is to say those who allow themselves the consumption of eggs and dairy products, an iron intake is assured. Moreover, since the latter provides more variety, it is much easier to follow in the long term.

Tips to avoid deficiencies

To avoid deficiencies, dietary diversification must be sufficient, paying particular attention to the amount of protein consumed at each meal. The absence of animal proteins must be compensated by a sufficient intake of proteins from eggs, cereals (wheat, rice, barley, oats, corn, etc.) present in particular in bread, pasta, flour, etc., legumes (soya, lentils, beans, etc.) and oilseeds (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, etc.). It is also necessary during each meal to combine cereals with legumes in order to provide all the amino acids necessary for the body.

To avoid any iron deficiency, you must eat eggs, pulses, parsley, salad. It is recommended to eat at each meal fruits or vegetables rich in vitamin C which promote the absorption of iron and to avoid coffee, tea or wine which decreases its absorption. Note that flexitarianism avoids certain errors through a better antioxidant profile and a diet based on foods with a low glycemic index.

If all is well, there is no abnormal fatigue or feeling of weakness, the diet is balanced.

Contraindications of a vegetarian diet

A vegetarian diet can be a healthy, sustainable, and ethical way to eat, but it’s not without its risks. Here are some of the most common contraindications to a vegetarian diet: You’re not eating enough protein. A plant-based diet is low in protein, so you need to make sure you’re getting enough by eating animal products or supplements. You’re not getting enough essential fatty acids.

This diet is not recommended for children because of the deficiencies it could cause. Pregnant women should exercise caution as their iron requirements are greater. They should consume more eggs (cooked) whose proteins are of excellent biological quality with a good supply of amino acids.

There are a few contraindications to a vegetarian diet, and it is important to talk with a doctor before starting this type of eating plan. Some of the most common contraindications include: iron deficiency anemia, heart disease, thyroid problems, allergies to specific foods, and difficulty absorbing nutrients from plant-based sources.

Risks and disadvantages of a vegetarian diet

A vegetarian diet has many benefits, but there are also some risks to consider. If the vegetarian diet is done correctly, that is to say by being well informed about the balanced diet, there is very little risk in following it. It is quite possible to compensate for the elements contained in meat and fish with an ovo-lacto-vegetarian diet.

But if it is poorly balanced, it can mainly lead to anemia due to deficiencies in iron as iron of vegetable origin is less well absorbed than iron of animal origin, in vitamin B12, and zinc. Vitamin b12 is crucial  for health, in addition to being involved in the production of red blood cells, it plays an important role in the cerebral and nervous system).

A vegetarian diet is often seen as a healthy option, but there are some risks and disadvantages to consider. A vegetarian diet can be high in fibre, but it can also be high in calories and lacking in important nutrients. It can also be difficult to get enough protein on a vegetarian diet, and some vitamins and minerals may be missing. A vegetarian diet is also less likely to provide enough omega-3 fatty acids.

Similarly, the absence of fish on the menu risks causing an omega-3 deficiency if not compensated for by the consumption of vegetable oils such as rapeseed oil. Particular attention will also be paid to calcium, which is essential for bone growth and the prevention of osteoporosis.

Vegans (vegetarian diet which excludes all products derived from animals such as gelatin but also eggs, milk, honey, etc.) are more exposed than vegetarians to the risk of deficiency. Even if well-conducted vegetarianism has few contraindications, it remains essential in the event of pregnancy, report your eating habits to your doctor.

If all goes well, there is no abnormal fatigue or feeling of weakness, it means that the diet is balanced. It is simply important to be followed by your referring doctor, aware of your diet,

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