What you need to know about vegetarianism

Following diet trends has become increasingly popular and accessible in the digital age. Readers can learn all about new ways to become “healthier,” physically and spiritually. One diet that gains popularity by the day is vegetarianism.

The basic understanding of a vegetarian is someone who does not consume meat, poultry or fish. There are also three types of vegetarians — lacto-ovo-vegetarians, lacto-vegetarians, ovo-vegetarians and lacto-ovo-vegetarians.

Lacto-ovo-vegetarians follow the basic rule of “no meat,” but they do consume dairy products and eggs. So, it would make sense that a lacto-vegetarian consumes dairy products but not eggs, and an ovo-vegetarian consumes eggs but not dairy products.

(For clarification purposes, vegans are vegetarians who do not consume meat, poultry, fish, dairy or any other animal product.)

Now that we have the basic understanding down, what do vegetarians eat for protein? Well, there many meat alternatives nowadays! Your local grocery store will most likely have veggie chicken nuggets, beef patties and more. Healthier meat alternative options include falafel, jackfruit and tofu.

Proteins, carbs and fats are all important in the average person’s diet, and Vegetarians definitely still meet their goals in this regard. This means you can still have your favorite foods like pizza, lasagna, French fries, mac n’ cheese and so much more!

Following a vegetarian diet means there is less cholesterol and saturated fats consumption and more of vitamins C and E, fiber, magnesium, potassium and folic acid. This can lower the risks of heart disease, type-2 diabetes and certain cancers. That said, there still isn’t enough long-term research to show the causation of vegetarianism to better health.

Living a vegetarian lifestyle may be for you, and it may not be. It can create great health benefits, or it can prohibit you from gaining the nutrients you need. It all depends on your own physiology.

Being a vegetarian takes planning and a lot of research on plant-based options. It helps to familiarize yourself with your local grocery store — and don’t be afraid to try plant-based options at your favorite restaurants!

Some plant-based restaurants in Tempe include but are not limited to Desert Roots Kitchen, Loving Hut and Green New American Vegetarian. Go ahead and give these restaurants a try, and see for yourself if vegetarianism is right for you!

For more information, please visit: