A meal that is not about yourself, a meal that is more than just switching meat with vegetable.
There are five types of essential nutrients that our body needs and the majority focus on meat which is a source of protein. Therefore, meat is always included in every meal. However, there is a group of people who choose to only eat vegetables and fruits, then get protein from sources other than meat. This group of people is called “Vegetarian” and the number of vegetarians keeps increasing nowadays. People choose to become vegetarian for many reasons such as being familiar with vegetarian diets in the family, wanting to reduce environmental damages, and wishing to take care of their health.
For someone who is not familiar with vegetarian diets, they might find stop eating meat difficult. Ordering food or looking for a product that matches your needs can create difficulties in a daily routine. Conversely, having vegetarian diets is healthy and definitely worth changing your consumption habits.
There are several reasons to start having a vegetarian diet. Sometimes, to start seems very difficult but if you get to know vegetarian better, becoming a vegetarian might seem much easier. Vegetarian can be a key to having a healthy body as well.
Vegetarian (Veggie) means meat-free and Vegetarian also resemble Vegetable. The word is derived from Latin “Vegetus” which means “perfect”. It is used to describe plants and is used to form the word Vegetarian that means a person who eats vegetables and fruits but not meat. To summarize, Vegetarian is a person who does not consume meat.
Vegetarian vs Vegan
It has always been confused between “Vegetarian” and “Vegan” and here is how they are different.
Actually, people who do not consume are all called “Vegetarian” and each type of vegetarian has different details.
Vegetarian (Veggie) refers to those who do not consume meat and fish. They focus on eating vegetables, fruits, dairy, eggs, butter, yogurt, honey, gelatin, yeast, cheese, beans, grains, unprocessed rice, brown rice, and whole wheat bread.
Vegan (Pure Vegetarian) is a stricter type of vegetarian. They do not consume any animal products or by-products. They do not have cane sugar as it is refined with bone char. Vegans do not consume anything that involves eggs or dairy including honey, gelatin, yeast, and refined sugar. Garlic, onion and every type of mushroom is forbidden. Mushroom is believed to be an ignoble plant that grows in the dark and stimulates sexual desire. Hence, vegans only consume vegetables, fruits, grains, plant seeds, and beans.
We can now distinguish Vegetarian from Vegan. Additionally, vegetarian diets are categorized accordingly to what is consumed.
Lacto-Ovo Vegetarians – do not consume meat but dairy and egg are acceptable.
Lacto Vegetarians – do not consume meat; however, they drink milk and have dairy.
Ovo Vegetarians – do not consume meat but they eat eggs.
Semi-Vegetarian or Flexitarian – refers to those who sometimes eat meat but keep the meat consumption very low. Most flexitarians consume meat less than 3 meals a week and try to avoid having meat from large animals such as beef, buffalo, pork, chicken and duck. They prefer small aquatic animals namely fish and shellfish. Currently, most people prefer this type of vegetarian since it is more convenient.
Macrobiotic Diet – the word is from Greek for living a long life. This type of vegetarian includes grains and fish. This diet is focusing on natural ingredients and taking Yin and Yang approach to healthy eating. It avoids using any facilities at all stages of production from farming to cooking. Yin represents cold foods that are bitter, sour and salty. Yang refers to hot foods that are salty and sweet such as vegetables, whole grains, beans, cabbage, mushroom, pumpkin, fresh seafood, and sea vegetables.
Fruitarian – refers to those who only eat fruits including tomato, beans, and grains.
Raw Vegans – do not eat meat, they only eat uncooked, unheated fresh vegetables and fresh fruits in order to get the most nutrients.
Pescatarians – do not consume met but they eat fish and seafood as they contain essential nutrients such as omega 3.
Pollo-vegetarian – is a diet that excludes meat but includes fish. Pollo-vegetarians sometimes eat chicken and poultry.
There are various types of vegetarian diets which make it seems difficult to choose to consume one. Living with an ordinary routine and ordering an a la carte from regular restaurant might seem easier. However, there is something good about being a vegetarian which is the reason why people choose to become one.
Emotional and Moral Motivations
Once we think about a steak that we normally order, then about the pig that was killed for the meal. That pig was cruelly kept and transported to a slaughterhouse. After getting killed, it was processed, cooked and served as this pork steak. The sense of compassion for the dead animal and the guilt from animal cruelty must have made one feels really bad. Hence, the major reason why people choose to become vegetarian is for the peace of mind. Since one is mentally healthy, he will look lively as well.
In India, people are very strict when it comes to being a vegetarian. Vegetarianism is in keeping with the Hindu principle of ahimsa or non-violence. It is believed that each animal has its own instinct and consuming meat would make a person aggressive, has a bad temper and easily get angry. Hindus believe that a vegetarian diet is pure and helps with a peace of mind, peacefulness, and calmness. It also makes a person kind.
In term of health benefits, when comparing meat to fruits and vegetables everyone must say fruits and vegetables are more beneficial to our health. They even keep us away from getting sick. Having a vegetarian diet gives us many health benefits including the following;
- Body Detoxification Our body cannot absorb all animal protein causing it to ferment and transform into the stinky chemical. Once it reaches the colon, the reabsorption mechanisms will take this toxin back into the body system. Such chemical is a cause of asthma, allergy, and even colon cancer. Moreover, vegetarian food contains less saturated fat and more fiber which helps with body detoxification. The colon can also be naturally cleaned.
- Longevity According to a study, it was found that over 600 Japanese have lived longer than 100 years. That was resulting in consuming low-calorie diet and rich-fiber food such as vegetables and fruits.
- Regular Bowel Movements Fruits and vegetables are digested easily and take less time than digesting meat. Consuming a vegetarian diet allows the digestive system to work more easily.
- Sleep Comfortably Other than having regular bowel movements, fruits and vegetables also prevent one from having flatulence while sleeping. Since fruits and vegetables contain fiber that meat rarely has, they help flushing waste out of the body.
- Fair Skin As the body is getting vitamin C and E from fruits and vegetables, you get a fair and healthy skin. Vitamin C’s main function is to stimulate collagen synthesis and every cell in the body needs collagen as it gives strength. One will not only have healthy skin but also a strong body.
Not only that animals get killed before ending up on our plates, but stories behind the livestock industry also have quite negative effects on the environment. It requires an enormous space in order to grow plants for animal feed. According to FAO, one-fourth of global arable land is used to grow animal feed and also to make their farms. In order to clear out the land, trees are cut down and burnt which also produces greenhouse gas. Interestingly, a documentary called “Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret” tells us about global warming that happening, mainly due to the livestock industry. This documentary shows how the livestock industry requires large amounts of water. It points that meat production for one hamburger requires up to 2,500 liters of water or water we use about 2 months, accounting for 55% of all water usage in the livestock industry, while household water usage takes up only 5%. As consumers demand more meat, these effects follow. We can’t change the behavior of the whole world. Therefore, vegetarians would like to be part of helping to destroy fewer natural resources.
Nowadays, more people are becoming vegetarian, this group of people is the new generation between 15-34 years old who regularly conduct a research online. As there are more people from this group becoming vegetarian, its popularity grows which leads to an expansion of the food industry. As a result, there are more variety of vegetarian diets making it easier to find the products in the market.
The First Step to Being a Vegetarian
If you wish to become a vegetarian and have no idea where to begin, just slowly changing your meal. First, gradually reducing meat consumption day by day and take the first step to become a vegetarian. Additionally, there are more suggestions on how to become a vegetarian.
- Starting with simple types of vegetarian such as Flexitarian, Pescatarian or Pollo-vegetarian
- Choosing various menus with the right proportion in order to get enough nutrients
- Protein is very important, so the appropriate amount of protein should be consumed. Good sources of protein are almonds, sunflower seeds, kidney beans, Job’s tears, golden beans, green beans, black beans, edamame beans, soy products, dairy, and eggs.
- When shopping for vegetarian products, you should read through the label thoroughly to make sure that the ingredients match your diet plan and that it does not really contain animal products.
- You should ask the restaurants regarding the ingredients in your dish because sometimes they do not understand your dietary restrictions. You should also clearly specify what you eat.
- A cooked meal, instant food or some products are quite expensive. You could save some money and make sure that everything is good by preparing your own food. Additionally, there are many vegetarian recipes that you can follow nowadays.
- Though regular food mostly contains meat, vegetarians can add meat substitutes in their recipes instead. Such ingredients add flavor to your dish. Tempeh is made from fermented soybeans. Seitan is made from gluten wheat, it gives a mild taste with a texture very similar to real meat. Tofu made from soybean, Quorn, bean hamburger, soybean sausage, and soybean cheese can also be one of your choices.
- A vegetarian diet can help you lose weight. However, if you do not choose the right diet, it can also put more weight on you. There are fewer choices of food for vegetarians and those choices contain fewer calories. Nevertheless, vegetarian diets can make you gain weight. Due to the lack of taste, vegetarians tend to spice up their food or choose a tasty choice such as carb and fried food. Furthermore, if one consumes an inappropriate amount of food, he is more likely to gain weight as well.
Other than having a vegetarian diet accordingly to your plan, you should also pay attention to the proper nutrients. This is to make sure that you are not malnourished from the lack of some nutrients from meat. For those who do not consume dairy or eggs, which is essential to the body, they can adjust their diet with other sources of nutrients such as;
- Vitamin B12 – is found in meat, eggs, and dairy. Vitamin B12 deficiency is found to cause neurological problems and anemia. You should have cereal, beans, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, food supplementary or convenience food with Vitamin B12 on the label.
- Iron – Iron deficiency can cause “Amenorrhea” in women resulting in absence of menses. You should consume grains, prunes, dried fruits, beans, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, lettuce, tomato juice, molasses, mint and wheat bread.
- Zinc – Zinc deficiency is normally found in people who have raw beans or yardlong beans. These people should have grains, wheat germ, soy nuts, walnuts, flax seeds or flax seed oil, canola oil, and spinach.
- Omega 3 – is found in fish and eggs. Its sources are seaweed, soybean oil or food with ALA which you should get 1.10 g./day.
Though there are various kinds of vegetarians, some people last only a few days. If you can keep having vegetarian diets for a long period, you will have a healthy body and a healthy mind. Other than having a proper nutrition, one should also work out, get enough rest and consume an appropriate amount of water as well.
Nasaraan Boutique Hotel focused on food for important guests like you. We have breakfast for guests. So you can tell in advance what kind of food you eat. We also have vegetarian food for you to eat as well.