Probably, the reason why you are reading is because you have heard about vegetarian diets but you don't understand what it is all about. You may want to know more about it. Read on to know more about this type of diet.

What is a vegetarian diet

As implicit from the name, a vegetarian diet is a type of diet that comprises only of foods obtain from plant sources. A vegetarian does not consume diary foods. He or she consumes such foods as vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, maize and others. There is various degree of vegetarian diets. Total vegetarian eats only vegetable without including food from other sources such as meat. But there is are some vegetarians that include diary products in their dietary plans. These people are known as lactovegetarians. There is another group of vegetarians known as ovo-lactovegetarian or lacto-ovovegetarian. People in this group add eggs in their dietary plans. There are other people that consume fish and chicken but do not consume red meat. These people are referred to as semi-vegetarians.

Is vegetarian diet good to health?

A vegetarian diet is generally good to health for a number of reasons. First, the dietary loan contain less fats than the diets of nonvegetarian. Its cholesterol content is very low. Thus,  vegetarians are not vulnerable to obesity, heart attack, coronary heart disease, diabetes mellitus, high blood pressure and other heart related illnesses. Vegetarians are also at lower risk of some types of cancer. So, when it is well planned, it will help to enhance your well being. 

However, it has to be followed with caution. There is always another side to every coin. It has its own downside. There is the danger of the diet plan containing much saturated fat and calories but lacking in other important nutrients. In order to ensure that your foods is not lacking in any essential food substance if you are following a vegetarian diets, here are some important foods to consider or to include in your food.

  • Protein: you should include plant protein in your foods. Plant protein is enough to provide you with all the essential and non-essential amino acids your body require to function very well. Foods that will provide you with proteins include whole grains, vegetables, legumes, nuts, soy protein and seeds.
  • Iron: iron is one of the important minerals in the body. If it is lacking in the body, you will have some health problems. If you are following a vegetarian diet, you should ensure that it contains iron giving foods. Rich sources of iron are dried beans, dried fruits, brewer's yeast, spinach and others.
  • Vitamin B-12: sources of vitamin B-12 breakfast cereals, vitamin supplements, brewer's yeast and others.
  • Calcium: sources of calcium include soybean, legumes, broccoli, spinach and vegetable greens.