Foods To Eat For A Healthy Vegetarian Dietby Punctual Abstract
There are clear health benefits of a well-balanced vegetarian diet. But nutrient deficiencies cause by vegetarian diets created “on the fly” can result in nutritional deficiencies that can result in decreased brain function and even weight gain!
This advice is based on information provided by Vegetarian Nutrition, a practice group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. For vegetarian diet advice catered to your specific needs, make sure to consult with your physician or a registered dietitian!
To meet daily calcium requirements, vegetarians should consume a variety of foods high in calcium – not just dairy. Almonds and almond butter are both good sources of calcium, as are black beans, soy beans, chickpeas and kale. Good liquid sources of calcium include milk (of course) as well as fortified plant-based milks, like soy or almond.
To meet daily iron requirements in a meat-free diet, vegetarians must consume a wide variety of iron-rich foods. Here are a few. Iron-fortified breakfast cereals are a great way to start your day, as are eggs, which are also high in iron. Dark, leafy greens like Swiss chard and spinach and nearly any kind of bean are great sources of iron.
A balanced vegetarian diet can deliver just as much protein as a meat lover’s diet – you’ve just got to select the right foods. Nuts, whole grains, legumes like lentils, peas and peanuts, dairy products and soy products are all packed with protein.
Vitamin B12 is found in all animal-based foods, including diary products and eggs. B12 shouldn’t be a concern for vegetarians that eat these items. Vegans, on the other hand, may find it hard to get their daily recommended dose of B12 and may want to consider a vitamin B12 (cobalamin) supplement or foods fortified with B12.
Many dairy products are fortified with vitamin D in the United States, and that’s because there are few food items that are naturally high in the nutrient. Vegans are at risk of Vitamin D deficiencies, which can leave them chronically tired and fatigued, much like B12 deficiencies. Vegetarians can avoid vitamin D deficiency by drinking vitamin D fortified milk.
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