Skip to main content

Health Effects of Vegetarian Diet







The practice of eating plant based diet without dairy products, eggs and meat is called vegetarianism. Vegetarianism can be followed for different reasons, it can be due to religious beliefs, animal rights and other factors including health, political, environmental, cultural and economic values.

There are differences within the practice of following a vegetarian diet. Ovo veg diet includes eggs but not dairy products. Lacto veg diet includes dairy products but not eggs. Vegan diet excludes eggs, honey and dairy products. Ovo-lacto veg diet includes both eggs and dairy products.

Since vegetarian diet does not include foods from all the sources many people had and some still have questions about the nutritional adequacy of the vegetarian diet. But the American Dietetic Association has said that vegetarian diets if well planned are healthful and nutritious, is suitable for all age groups and it also helps prevent heart diseases, cancer and diabetes. Recently an Australian study has also found that vegetarian diet is very healthy and that it prevents certain diseases.

The positive features of vegetarian diet are that, it lowers the levels of saturated fat, cholesterol and animal protein. It contributes higher amounts of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium and antioxidants such as vitamin C and E and phytochemicals. Generally the vegetarians have lower body mass index, lower cholesterol, blood pressure, lower rates of heart diseases, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, renal disease and metabolic syndrome and Alzheimer’s disease.

Now, inclusion of non lean red meat in particular is directly associated with the increased risk of cancers of the esophagus, liver, colon and lungs. But there is a downside to vegetarian diet. Vegetarians are more likely to be deficient in vitamin B12 deficiency which increases the likelihood of osteoporosis and depression.

To ensure optimal vegan diet include vitamin B12 fortified foods such as soy and rice beverages, breakfast cereals and B12 fortified nutritional yeast. Tempe is a whole grain product with high folate content. For proper calcium intake include green leafy vegetables, tofu, tahini and calcium fortified soy and rice beverages and orange and apple juices.

For adequate vitamin D especially during winters consume vitamin D enriched foods. Lupin beans, soy, hempseed, chia seed, amaranth, buck wheat, peanut butter and quinoa contain significant amounts of the eight amino acids to ensure your optimal protein intake. You can combine a variety of complimentary plant sources to provide you with eight essential amino acids.

Vegetarian sources of omega 3 fatty acids include soy, walnuts, pumpkin, canola oil, kiwi fruit, hemp seed, algae, chia seed and flax seed. Foods rich in zinc such as whole grains, legumes, soy products provide sufficient zinc intake. Eating a vegetarian diet is a good recipe for our own health and that of the planet in which we live.

Take care,
Swarnam 

soy-whey diet photo courtesy of Wikipedia
Other photos courtesy of www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net
photo of vegetable stall by Simon Howden
photo of vegetables by Grant Cochrane 

Comments

  1. For me, being a vegetarian has a lot of health impacts through lifestyle and physical changes. However, by doing this to your body, you are being prone to vitamin b12 deficiency, is this true?

    ReplyDelete
  2. My daughter(13) is following a vegetarian diet. This is helpful info!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

21 Signs Your Thyroid Isn't Working

The butterfly-shaped gland in your neck, the thyroid has a dramatic impact on a variety of bodily functions. According to estimates if you’re woman of over 35 your chances of a thyroid disorder are more by 30 percent. Experts say that women are as much as ten times as likely as men to have a thyroid problem.
Your thyroid gland is located above Adam’s apple. The thyroid hormone (TH) among other things regulates your body’s temperature, metabolism, and heartbeat. When your thyroid gland turns sluggish, it produces too little TH. The condition is known as hypothyroidism.
Hypothyroidism in India is 11 percent. Cities like Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Ahmadabad, and Hyderabad has a higher prevalence compared to coastal cities such as Mumbai, Goa, and Chennai. Thyroid hormone has a far reach in the body from your brain to bowels, so diagnosing a disorder can be challenging. Here are some tell-tale signs to find whether your thyroid is on the blink. üYou’re exhausted üYou’re feeling weak üAlways su…

8 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Kombucha Tea

Source:www.Positive Health Wellness.com

Pros and Cons of Including Fermented Foods in Your Diet

Meishe village best described as “hidden jewel” is located near the volcanoes of Haikou. The village houses and roads are made of volcanic rock and the people are so untroubled that they never lock their doors. In this village, folk culture has withstood the test of time. The villagers prefer to marry their daughters to young men whose families have more jars to collect rain water.
Similar to our above story fermentation has also withstood the test of time. Prehistoric man made cheese some 7000 years ago and the earliest evidence of wine making dates back to 8000 years ago. So what is meant by fermentation? According to the author of the “Art of Fermentation”, it is best described as the flavorful space between fresh and rotten. The science of fermentation is known as zymology.
The fermented foods offer a variety to our diet. The biological enrichment during the fermenting process produces proteins, essential amino acids, essential fatty acids and vitamins. This boosts our immune functi…