Vegetarianism has become an extremely popular diet choice over the last few decades. In light of this, a consumer survey done in 2004 estimated that one in ten Canadian households contains at least one person following a vegetarian diet (Gwendolyn, W., et al, 2012). In respects to this, the rise of meat-less alternatives is growing within supermarkets, fast food chains, and restaurants. Hence, the rise of such alternatives is a direct result of rising numbers of people who choose a vegetarian diet. A vegetarian diet consists of eating plant-based foods and refraining from eating animal product or by-product. However, there are several varieties of vegetarian’s diets, which may limit the consumption of eggs and dairy products. A lacto vegetarian consumes dairy but refrains from eggs whereas a lacto-ova vegetarian consumes dairy and eggs. Additionally, a vegetarian diet may be a personal choice, health choice or a religious belief. Despite the controversy that suggests a vegetarian diet does not provide adequate nutrients to sustain a healthy lifestyle, is in fact inaccurate as a vegetarian diet is among the healthier diets known worldwide. Thus, vegetarians consume adequate nutrients, lower their risk for disease and ingest healthier food compared to their meat-eating counterpart.
Most of the nutrients and are found in meat can be found in another non-meat source. For a person contemplating a vegetarian diet it must be considered that they will need to attain essential nutrients from another source. Additionally, a well-balanced vegetarian diet can provide a healthy lifestyle during all stages of life.
Protein, which is found in animals, can also found in foods such as tofu, soy, beans, lentils, most nuts and seeds. Prote...
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... fruit and vegetables five or more times per day (Statistics Canada, 2012). Vegetarians must get creative in their diets to prepare nutritious meals without meat. Thus, vegetarians are more opt to choose complex carbs versus refined carbs. Complex carbs, such as whole grains, have a lower-glycemic index and keep the sensation of feeling full longer. Foods low in glycemic index are a healthier choice because they release glucose into the body slower, which determines blood glucose levels in the body and contributes to lowering cholesterol. Refined carbs such as white bread and pasta spike blood glucose levels, which cause fatigue and high insulin levels in diabetics.
Vegetarians are also not exposed to the chemicals and preservatives that are put on meat. That being said, vegetarians are at a lower risk of suffering a food borne illness from improperly store meat.
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