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Healthy Vegetarian Diet

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Healthy Vegetarian Diet.

Benefits of a vegetarian diet include lowered risk for heart disease, diabetes, autoimmune disorders and metabolic syndrome, obtaining more antioxidants and fiber, better protection against obesity or weight gain, and.

Several analyses that have compared vegetarian diets to non-vegetarian diets have found that those eating predominately plant-based diets have increased protection against health problems, including some cancers, type 2 diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular diseases, cardiometabolic risk factors and total mortality. People who follow a vegetarian diet or vegan diet — meaning they avoid all meat and possibly dairy, fish and eggs too — represent between 2 percent to 5 percent of the total adult population in the United States.

Overall I believe it’s possible to be healthy as a vegetarian, or better yet a pescatarian, yet, when it comes to the pros and cons of being a vegan, in my opinion it’s usually not ideal.

So, should everyone give up all animal-derived foods in their diets? Not necessarily. 

If you are a vegan, I strongly suggest you supplement with vitamin B12 and consume plant-based protein powder daily. As a vegetarian or pescatarian you’re able to get plenty of amino acids and vitamin B12 without supplementation, so I prefer those approaches to being a vegan. Additionally, be sure to get plenty of nuts, seeds, mushrooms, beans, seaweed and higher protein grains like quinoa in your diet.

Today, it is common for many people to choose to follow a vegan or vegetarian diet because there’s so much improper treatment of livestock and other animals. If you’re willing to consume high-quality animal proteins in small or moderate amounts, I’d definitely suggest seeking out these types of companies, so you can feel good about your source. While I totally agree that this is sad and common, there are companies that abide by organic standards.

“Raw foodists” believe that because raw plant foods contain biophotons, or “sun stored energy,” they contribute to important processes in the body. If your diet provides adequate calories overall and is balanced, then the more biophotons you consume the more you should experience having higher levels of energy and improved moods.

To make sure you’re eating enough protein and calories in general, don’t skimp on plants that offer amino acids and healthy fats. How much protein should you aim to eat each day? While it might be possible to get away with less, I personally think it’s best to divide your body weight in half and eat about that many grams of protein per day. Some of the best plant proteins include natto, spirulina, tempeh, nutritional yeast, green peas, lentils, quinoa and amaranth.

Including more vegetables and other plant foods in your diet is definitely a great idea. But there are also some disadvantages to vegetarian and vegan diets that you should be aware of. Below are the downsides to having a completely plant-based diet or one that includes only little amounts of animal proteins:

Variety

Eat a variety of vegetables and fruits. It might be easy for you to eat fruit daily, but what about getting enough vegetables? Most health authorities recommend eating at least three to five servings of veggies per day. Here are some tips for sneaking more veggies and fruit into your meals:

·        Start your meal with a salad or a veggie-based soup.

·        Add a handful or two of veggies to things like omelettes, stews, stir-fries, casseroles, etc.

·        Use fruit in place of added sugar to sweeten recipes.

·        Swap vegetables for other foods in your meals, especially refined grains.

Vitamin B12

It’s recommended that all vegetarians and vegans who abstain from eating most or all animal foods take vitamin B12 supplements because you can only get vitamin B12 in substantial amounts by consuming meat, fish, eggs and dairy. Cutting out all of these foods can sometimes be problematic and contribute to vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms like fatigue, weakness and others.

Phytic Acid

 

Some grains, beans and legumes, such as raw soybeans, lentils and mung beans, may contain trypsin inhibitors and other “antinutrients” that can make digestion difficult and hinder nutrient absorption. These inhibitors can block key digestive enzymes, and phytic acid found in grains can keep you from absorbing calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc. However, soaking and sprouting your grains and legumes can greatly reduce phytic acid.