It seems to be becoming the norm in society for people to become vegetarian. Not only are they much healthier than your usual western diet. Another reason why people choose to become vegetarian is that they are more eco-friendly. A vegetarian diet is rich in many vitamins and minerals. It can lack some nutrients that are important for our health.
Mix Up Your Fruit and Vegetables
One thing that you must make sure of when having a vegetarian diet is mixing up your foods. You must mix up your meals to have a well-balanced diet. Many people just stick to the same meals each day which mean you can be deficient in numerous vitamins and minerals. If you want to have a healthy diet, mix up the meals you are eating each day.
To have a healthy diet, you have to consume the daily requirement of all nutrients. You will also need some nutrients more than others. For example, more magnesium than iron. This is why you must mix up the foods that you consume throughout the day. Eating the same foods can damage your health.
If you are dieting to lose weight, you want to make sure that you mix up foods. A study has shown that somebody who eats the same foods will slow down the weight loss process. If you want a way to mix up your meals, then aim for a rainbow on your plate.
It is recommended that you eat around five portions of 80 grams worth of fruit and vegetables. Make sure that each meal is different, so you get all of the required vitamins and minerals. Mixing both of these is one way to ensure that you have a healthy diet when you are on a vegetarian diet.
Aim For Your Starchy Foods
Starchy carbohydrates are going to be your primary source of energy. The reason for this being you won’t be eating as much protein as a typical omnivore diet. The type of carbohydrates that you should be targeting is whole grains because they are rich in fibre, calcium, iron and B vitamins. Bread, rice and pasta all have whole-grain forms.
When it comes to the winter months, you want to be looking for much warmer meals. Porridge is the perfect meal for that but does not forget to add some fruit with it as well. That can either be in the porridge or something that you would follow up afterwards. For your later meals, consider a potato hash with plenty of vegetables.
Dairy and Alternative Dairy Products
Calcium is another nutrient that our bodies are heavily dependent on. The reason for this being is because they keep our teeth healthy and our bones strong. Both milk and cheese are rich in calcium, and these will be your primary source of the nutrient. Cheese and yoghurts are rich in other nutrients such as vitamins A, vitamin B12 and protein. A vegan will struggle to get these nutrients. Try to consume soy, rice and oat drinks as these are all rich in calcium.
Do Not Forget Protein!
Protein is a macronutrient that our bodies rely on massively. When somebody decides to change their diet, they will automatically forget about protein. Not knowing how much meat provides us with.
Additionally, there are many vegetarian and vegan alternatives for protein to give us the daily amount we need. Beans, Pulses and eggs are all great sources of protein. Legumes are also a great source of protein. Another positive about these foods is that they are low in fat as well. Not only do they provide a lot of protein but, they also supply our body with fibre. Fibre is another essential vitamin we need as this is good for our digestive system.
As mentioned before, vegans will struggle with getting their daily intake of both protein and calcium. The reason for this being they do not eat dairy products. Tofu textured vegetable protein and tempeh are just some of the foods that a vegan can consume. A vegetarian must make sure that they mix up their sources of protein. This is recommended because it mixes up the amino acids to build and repair cells in our body.
Avoid Fatty Foods
Too many fatty foods can have an impact on your body. Limiting your foods that are high in salt, sugar and fat is essential for your health. All of these can lead to weight issues and, the foods that are high in these are chocolate, cream, crips, biscuits, pastries, ice cream, cakes and puddings. The majority of these foods will give you quick bursts of energy. Leading to a sugar crash afterwards.
Getting Nutrients From a Vegetarian Diet
You must consume all of the nutrients that are required. The nutrients that a vegetarian will lack are protein and vitamin B. These will often be found in meats and dairy products. Luckily enough for vegetarians, they can get these in both eggs and fish. Both eggs and fish will be rich in omega-3 as well. These are the best sources of protein compared to other meats out there.
It is recommended that a vegetarian plans their meal. Every day of the week to make sure that you get all of your vitamins and minerals. A vegetarian will likely be low in both B vitamins and iron. The best sources for B vitamins are Milk, Cheese, Eggs, Breakfast cereals and soy products. Vitamin D is another nutrient that a vegetarian could potentially be below on. If you are, then it is recommended that you start taking vitamin D tablets to get your daily requirement.
A vegetarian diet is one of the healthiest diets out there. The reason for this is because of the toxic chemicals that are in meats and processed foods. There are many vitamins and minerals that you can easily find in both fruit and vegetables. Make sure that you mix up your diet to make sure that you get as many vitamins and minerals as possible.