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Shortfalls and Benefits of Vegetarian Diet - Essay Example

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Shortfalls and Benefits of Vegetarian Diet

A healthy vegetarian diet requires sufficient considerations of all nutritional requirements and a commitment to provide the body with sufficient of what it requires. Scientists and nutritionists emphasize on the value of adopting a vegetarian diet as a preventive measure in combating diseases whose susceptibility increases on diet basis. In addition, vegetarians have an easy time maintaining a healthy body mass index. This paper will discuss how vegetarian can ensure that they get an adequate supply of all required nutrients (Joshi 140). In addition, the paper will elaborate on the benefits of vegetarian diet in combating some diseases. Classes of vegetarians There are different types of vegetarians depending on the animal products that they avoid. Vegans rely on solely plant foods for all their nutritional needs. The second group only consumes plant foods and diary products and they are lacto-vegetarians. The third group comprises of the people who eat eggs, diary products, and plant foods. These are the lacto-ovo-vegetarians. Those who eat eggs and diary products are the ovo-vegetarians. A different class consists of people who depend on plant foods, diary products, eggs and animal products with the exclusion of red meat. Nutritionists describe these people as semi-vegetarians (141). All types of vegetarians may develop a deficiency of several nutritional requirements if they are not aware of the body’s nutritional needs. Each individual requires a certain amount of protein, carbohydrate, fats, vitamins, and minerals.i6t is worth mentioning that some of the nutrients that the body requires are solely from animal products or occur in low concentrations in plant foods. Therefore, this necessitates a clear understanding of the required level of daily intake, how much is available in plant foods and potential supplements. Many vegetarians rely on whole cereals, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts and other plant products. Animal products offer a high level of proteins compared to plant products (145). It is easy for a vegetarian to rely on a low supply of proteins from plants compromising with the body’s ability to rebuild tissues. Plant foods supply low levels of proteins compared to animal products. Since vegetarians only remain with legumes such as beans peas, nuts, and whole cereals as sources of proteins, it becomes important for vegetarians to ensure that their daily intake of protein is sufficient. Knowledge on the calorie levels of each type of food will help vegetarians in assessing how much protein they take each day. Vegetarians should opt for soybean extracts and nuts that are hubs of high levels of proteins (151). Alternatively, an individual should develop a plan that incorporates different plant proteins so that at the end of each day, an individual’s total protein intake is sufficient. In addition, vegetarians stand a risk of having a deficiency of iron. Iron-rich foods are mainly animal products such as liver and eggs. Plant foods do not provide the vegetarian with enough iron to bind hemoglobin in the body. According to nutritionists, the body is usually reluctant to absorb proteins from plant sources. The high fiber content in plant foods makes the iron inaccessible to the body. This is because fibers often bind the minerals from a meal. The body does not absorb fiber. Women have a greater iron need to satisfy than men do because of biological differences. Vegetarians may opt for dark green leafy vegetables and dried fruits as sources of iron. It worth noting that consumption of iron rich foods should be alongside vitamin c-rich foods. Nutritional experts advise that vitamin plays a role in increasing iron’ ...Show more


Many people are adopting a vegetarian diet today for several reasons.For some people, they adopt a complete vegan diet and their diet does not include any ingredient from animal products.Others only limit their meat intake …
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Shortfalls and Benefits of Vegetarian Diet essay example
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