You can find a lot of reasons to become a vegetarian. Some of us do this because of religious belief, health problems, while others want to protect animals. Sometimes people go for meatless diet to save money.
According to statistics, nearly 6% of American adults prefer vegetarian diet. In addition to this, approximately 3% of children and teens in the US choose staying off eating meat.
In general, vegetarians are defined as people, who have eliminated meat, poultry and seafood from their ration. However today vegetarianism can be classified into several types.
Pescatarians avoid eating meat, but may consume fish. Pollo-vegetarians, in turn, can eat poultry, but refuse taking meat.
Ovo-vegetarians avoid all meat, poultry, fish and dairy products, but don't exclude eggs.
Some individuals don't take meat, poultry, eggs or fish. At the same time they eat yogurt, cheese and drink milk gladly. They call themselves lacto-vegetarians.
Lacto-ovo vegetarians eat both eggs and dairy foods, but don't consume meat, poultry and seafood.
The most strict type is total vegetarianism. Its followers (vegans) don't eat any animal-based products, including gelatin and honey.
Giving up meat may be challenging for your body. Here is what happens, when you remove meat from your menu:
#1. Weight loss – those, who stay on the plant-based diet, consume less calories, than non-vegetarians. One study found that meat-eaters have higher body mass index than vegans, vegetarians and those, who are allowed to eat fish.
#2. Decreased risks of heart disease - vegetarian diet usually involves more cereals, fruits and vegetables with low levels of “bad” cholesterol. This can significantly reduce risks of cardiovascular disease and heart attack.
#3. Anemia – this commonly occurs in vegans. The reason is that they don't get enough iron and vitamin B12 from meat products. It's really important to take special supplements or to fulfill your body's needs, eating beans, broccoli, fortified cereals and figs. Your body uses these elements to create sufficient amount of hemoglobin – a substance, which carry oxygen to all cells and tissues.
#4. Lower risks of cancer – some investigations show that vegetarians are less likely to suffer from cancer than those, who prefer meat. Even if you eat poultry and fish, limiting red meat can reduce your risks of developing colon cancer.
#5. Elevated hazards of fractures – women are more likely to have osteoporosis, particularly after menopause. Risks may appear even higher, if you gave up taking calcium-rich products, like dairy. Try to take appropriate dose of calcium, eating more broccoli, collards and kale. It's also possible to correct calcium deficiency with special supplements.
#6. Diabetes prevention – eating high-calorie foods, especially processed red meat, has a close link with elevated risk of diabetes. That's why following plant-based diet can really help you prevent type 2 diabetes and keep your blood sugar in normal range.
The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!
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