Vegetarian Diet – Far From Monotony And Malnutrition | Dennispoint Campground MD

For some people, the vegetarian diet has a reputation of being quite boring, which is certainly not the case! Vegetarian recipes and dishes leave a lot of room for creative ideas and experimentation. We show how it works and introduce the best-known forms of vegetarianism.

what does a vegetarian eat

People who follow a vegetarian diet have different motivations for doing so. These can be health aspects, ethical reasons (animals), economic considerations, environmental protection or even religious beliefs. But they have one thing in common: they all do without meat. However, when it comes to animal foods like milk and milk products, eggs, and fish, they differ. Anyone who follows a vegan diet also goes without it and eats almost exclusively plant-based foods like fruits and vegetables. Unlike vegans, vegetarians, by definition, do not avoid honey.

If you want to eat vegetarian dishes, you can also do it in the low-carb version. High-protein plant foods such as soybeans/tofu, other legumes such as lentils, beans and peas, and nuts are used.

The vegetarian diet has many healthy recipes, so you are doing something good for your body if you eat vegetarian food at least once in a while.

did you know Vegetarians are in good company. In 2019, 8 million people in Germany already ate vegetarian food – almost a tenth! The protection of animals, the climate and the environment are mentioned as the most common reasons for the vegetarian lifestyle.

Does vegetarian mean healthy?

The idea that a vegetarian diet is automatically healthy is far from true. If the dishes are designed too one-sided, a nutrient deficiency can occur. You need to make sure your diet has sufficient vital and nutrient density and know which nutrients need to be balanced by avoiding fish, meat and possibly other foods.

With these rules, vegetarians get all their nutrients

Protein sources for vegans and vegetarians

Cereals and soybeans are considered the most important source of protein for vegetarians and vegans. They provide fiber and secondary vegetable substances in addition to carbohydrates. They can also serve as a source of vitamins and minerals. Potatoes also provide vitamin C and potassium. A vegetarian product based on wheat protein is seitan, which you can easily prepare yourself. Curious? This is how you can make seitan yourself.

Prevent vitamin D deficiency

Enjoy the sun! Vitamin D is mainly found in fish. However, the sun vitamin can also be produced by the body itself if it absorbs UV-B rays from the sun. That’s why it’s better to go out at least 15 minutes a day and do your body good. In our latitudes, however, a dietary supplement of vitamin D may also be necessary.

Sufficient calcium intake is also important for a vegetarian lifestyle. With a normal diet, the need is covered mainly by milk and milk products. Raw kale or spinach also contain the mineral. Mineral water can also contain > 150 mg per litre.

As a lacto-ovo vegetarian, you can meet your vitamin B12 needs with milk, dairy products, and eggs. Anyone who doesn’t should definitely talk to their GP about vitamin B12 supplementation. Since serious consequences can be feared in the event of a prolonged deficiency, you should inform yourself and check whether such a deficiency exists. Symptoms may include movement coordination problems, depression, muscle weakness, difficulty sleeping, etc.

Sufficient supply of iron.

Probably the most common nutrient deficiency is a lack of iron in the body; this affects both vegetarians and omnivores. Since the bioavailability of iron from meat and fish (divalent iron) is higher, vegetarians can only provide trivalent iron with lower bioavailability to the body in their diet. However, iron availability can be increased by taking small amounts of vitamin C or other organic acids from fruits and vegetables or fermented products (eg, sauerkraut or soy products). Vegetable foods that can contribute significantly to iron intake are nuts, wholemeal bread, soybeans, vegetables, lamb’s lettuce or watercress. Important to know: Due to the large blood loss during menstruation, women have higher iron needs than men. Therefore, the DGE recommends a daily iron intake of 15 mg for women and only 10 mg per day for men. Growth and pregnancy also increase iron requirements.

Zinc should not be missing either

Like iron, zinc is also a trace element that is found in plant foods, but cannot be utilized by the body as well as when animal products are consumed. In addition, secondary plant substances “phytates” in cheese, pumpkin seeds, cereals, legumes or nuts make it difficult for the body to absorb zinc. The combination with citrus fruits is recommended in the vegetarian diet. The preparation can also reduce the phytate content. Soaking or fermentation (sourdough or yeast dough) are tried and tested methods.

Fights iodine deficiency

Iodine deficiency now affects nearly a third of the world’s population (according to the WHO). The trace mineral is commonly found in fish. Vegetarians who do without it can use algae as a supplier. Iodized table salt with a minimum content of 15 mg/kg and a maximum of 25 mg/kg must also be part of the menu. If you are lactose intolerant (milk and eggs can also be high in iodine if animals are fed properly), or if you follow a one-sided vegetarian diet without fish or follow a diet that is generally low in iodized salt (syndrome of Hashimoto), a visit to the doctor is essential to reject the intake of iodine in the form of tablets.

Replace fats and fatty acids of animal origin

Polyunsaturated fatty acids (omega-6 fatty acids, omega-3 fatty acids) must be ingested by the body with food. When preparing vegetarian recipes, use high-quality oils such as rapeseed, sunflower, sesame or flaxseed, hemp, and walnut oils so that they are sufficiently available to the body.

For the rest, it is true that the body is better supplied with many micronutrients in the vegetarian diet due to the greater amount of fruits and vegetables on the menu than in mixed diets. So you don’t have to worry about the intake of vitamin C, E or folic acid and secondary plant substances in general. Just when it comes to nutrition during pregnancy, the need for certain nutrients can increase dramatically and you need to make sure you get enough of them.

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