Are you a vegetarian? Nowadays, many people choose veganism. Being a vegan means that you must avoid all meat, dairy products, fish and eggs. In fact, those people who eat predominantly plant-based diets have increased protection against health problems, such as cardiovascular diseases, cardiometabolic risk factors, some cancers, type 2 diabetes, obesity and total mortality.
The question is, “What is a vegetarian diet?” There are many types of vegetarian diets, including ovo-lacto (plant-based foods, eggs and dairy products), pescetarian (fish and seafood along with a variety of plant foods, eggs, and dairy products), and vegan (only plant-based foods). Vegetarian diets are very nutritious, because plants are high in essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Is a vegetarian diet healthy or not? The thing is, that all depends on what foods a person chooses to eat, and also on his desire to avoid all animals products.
Which one of the vegetarian diets will you choose? If you do not know what to answer, we are ready to help you! Today, we have prepared a list of 6 vegetarian diet benefits. Moreover, in our article you can find a 7-day vegetarian meal plan. Read and take notes!
6 vegetarian diet benefits:
#1. High in Antioxidants and Vitamins
You should know that all plant-based foods are rich in antioxidants and have some anti-inflammatory properties. It means that they help stop the progression of disease by supplying nutrients that fight oxidative stress. Diets that contain vegetables, fruit, and other plant foods (legumes, ancient grains) are rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients, such as flavonoids, resveratrol, quercetin, and beta-carotene; essential vitamins, including vitamin C, E and A; trace minerals, such as manganese or phosphorus; and electrolytes, including potassium and magnesium.
READ MORE: 7-day weight-loss challenge
#2. Can Help Support Heart Health
Plant-based foods help reduce inflammation, a root cause of heart disease, and provide dietary fiber. Studies have shown that vegetarian diets reduce the risk of heart disease, and they can also be beneficial for significantly lowering body mass index, high obesity rates, high blood pressure, high triglyceride and cholesterol levels, and diabetes risk.
#3. Can Help with Weight Loss
Vegetarian diets can help with weight loss, because all plant-based foods are very low in calories, but they are also high in terms of volume. The thing is, they take up a lot of space in your stomach, they fill you up and do not allow you to overeat.
#4. Provides Digestive Enzymes
You should include raw foods in your diet because you will receive a large amount of enzymes. Enzymes are important for your body because they are needed to break down the food into smaller nutritional units that the body can handle.
#5. Eliminates Additives and Byproducts Found in Cooked Meat
Cooking meat at high temperatures can cause chemical compounds such as heterocyclic amines, which may have carcinogenic effects. However, vegetarian diets eliminate processed meats, including packaged cold cuts, hot dogs, salami, and cured meats which are also considered carcinogenic.
#6. Vegetarianism is Helpful for the Environment
A higher proportion of water, land, fossil fuels and energy are needed for animal foods production. On the other hand, most plant foods are lower on the food chain and do not need such supplies.
# 7-day vegetarian meal plan
You need to eat a variety of vegetables and fruits, consume more raw plant foods, and get enough plant-based protein and fats.
Breakfast – oatmeal with fruits and nuts
Lunch – organic caprese pasta salad
Dinner – couscous and roasted vegetable stuffed tomatoes
Breakfast – avocado and sautéed mushroom toast
Lunch – aloo gobi with chickpeas
Dinner – roasted sweet potato and quinoa salad
Breakfast – Blueberry and lemon muffin
Lunch – Greek chickpea salad
Dinner – 4x carrot hummus cucumber cups
Breakfast – 2x hard-boiled eggs with a pinch each of salt and pepper
Lunch – mac and cheese with cauliflower and spinach
Dinner – vegan red lentil curry
Breakfast – 3x Spanish egg muffins
Lunch – vegetarian udon noodle soup
Dinner – vegetarian quesadilla with cheese
Breakfast – buttermilk pancakes with maple syrup and whipped butter
Lunch – egg fried quinoa
Dinner – crunchy radish salad
Breakfast – avocado baked eggs
Lunch – Greek chickpea salad
Dinner – cheese, garlic and tomato pasta bake.
READ MORE: 5 foods you can eat overnight and stay slim
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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