Types & Benefits of Vegetarianism
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A vegetarian diet is simply a diet that mainly consists of fruit and vegetables, grains, pulses, seeds and nuts, and may or maybe not be inclusive of dairy products, and/or eggs - depending on the individuals' preference.
In this day and age, as everyone tends to categorise things, you may have heard of terms such as 'fruitarian', 'vegan', 'pescatarian', etc. which may be rather confusing to those unfamiliar with the whole concept of vegetarianism.
Use the table to help you better understand which food groups are omitted, depending on the type of vegetarian diet.
Note: that semi/demi vegetarians, pescatarians and macrobiotics are not recognised as 'true' vegetarian diets as they still include animal products.[1,2]
Many studies have shown that appropriately planned vegetarian diets are beneficial when compared to omnivorous diets, as they may result in:
More likely to meet recommended daily fruit and vegetable intake, which contributes to:
Lowered risks of developing heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, obesity and cancers; this is mainly due to the fact that well planned vegetarian diets typically contain less saturated fatty acids and cholesterol, but are also higher in fibre, antioxidants and phytochemicals
Positive impact on environment and economically advantageous, as the production of plant-based foods require less resources and causes less green house gas emissions in comparison to animal-based food production, thus it is more gentle on the environment.[1,2,3,4,5]
Considering the information above, it is easy to deduce that a vegetarian diet is not only beneficial for you and your health but also for the environment. Viva vegetarian!
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