The vegetarian way of eating can be a very healthy style
of eating. The rules still apply with healthy eating,
although you should add variety, balance, and moderation.
A vegetarian is someone who avoids all types of meat,
whether it be hamburgers, hotdogs, chicken, or even fish.
Vegetarians are also sometimes classified by the type of
food they are or aren't willing to eat. For example,
Lacto-ovo vegetarians will avoid animal flesh yet they
will eat eggs and most dairy products. A Vegan on the
other hand, will avoid all food that has any trace of
Because they don't eat meet, vegetarians will often
wonder how they'll get enough protein. Although you may
not realize it, the average American actually consumes
more protein than he actually needs. For the lacto-ovo
vegetarian, dairy products are an excellent source of
protein. Vegans on the other hand, get their protein
from nuts, seeds, and soy products.
Along the lines of beans, there are several to choose
from, including green or red lentils, peanuts, split
peas, pinto, soy, kidney, and many more. Some of them
you are already familiar, such as kidney beans in
chili, refried beans in Mexican dishes, red beans and
rice, and pinto beans. Although some beans taste good
as they are, others are available with different flavors
to help enhance their taste. Nuts are hihg in protein,
although they deliver a lot more fat than beans, which
means you should enjoy them in moderation. By having
one cup of cooked beans, you'll get the same amount of
protein as eating two ounces of meat!
The nutrients of concern for vegans, who avoid all types
of animal food, are vitamin B12, calcium, and vitamin D.
In the average North American diet, the primary source
for B12 is animals. To have an adequate intake of B12,
vegans should reguarly consume vitamin B12 supplements or
foods, which contain vitamin B12, such as soy products
For calcium, vegans can rely on orange juice or soy
milk, as they are fortified with calcium. Beans and
leafy green vegetables will also contain some calcium as
Although all types of vegetarians rely on simple food
groups, controlling your vitamins and calcium intake is
something you should always do. This is very important
for eating healthy, as well as staying healthy. If you
control what you eat, you'll have many years of healthy
eating ahead of you.