People choose vegetarian diets for a number of reasons; an aversion to killing animals, a reluctance to eat meat, or a simple choice towards a different way of life.
There are a number of different vegetarian diets. Although it need not be a completely restrictive diet. The core theme across all vegetarian diets is the avoidance of all red meat (such as beef, lamb, and pork).
Types of Vegetarian
- Vegan – Eats no food sourced from animals
- Lacto-ovo – Includes milk and eggs.
- Lacto – Allows milk but will not eat eggs.
- Ovo – Eats eggs only – but no other animal foods.
- Pesco – Eats fish but no other animal foods (pescetarian)
- Pollo – Allows chicken
- Fruitarian (sub-set of vegan – includes only fruiting portion of plant).
As vegetarian diets are based on consumption of fruits, vegetables, nuts and whole grains, these diets are high in fiber. They have other health advantages in that they are normally lower in calories, saturated fat, and refined sugars.
With the correct understanding and careful planning, all types of vegetarian diet can provide adequate nutrition.
Nutrients to be aware of
The main nutrients that must be emphasized are; protein, iron, calcium, zinc, riboflavin, and vitamin B12.
Lacto/ovo diets provide protein by means of milk and egg white.
On a vegan diet, protein needs must be met by legumes (nuts, peas, lentils, beans, etc). Combining beans and other legumes with various dishes can provide the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of protein – normally a gram per kilogram of body weight. While Soy milk is an excellent source of protein, it has high estrogen levels which, being a factor in the physical maturing process, is undesirable for the vegan child. Calcium for vegans is available in vegetables like broccoli.
Popular Vegetarian Diets
|Plant Powered Diet||Highlights the health and weight loss benefits associated with eating more whole plant foods. This book offers a flexible approach that does not require becoming a vegan or giving up meat completely.|
|30 Day Vegan Challenge||A practical guide to help you get started with a vegan diet. It provides tips and advice on subjects including meeting your nutritional requirements and dealing with the social challenges associated with following a vegan lifestyle.|
|MILF Diet||A Macrobiotic plant based diet designed for MILFS (sexually attractive older women)|
|Anne Collins Diet||2 Vegetarian options available, complete with meal plans and recipes.|
|Beyond Broccoli: Vegetarian Diet Deficiencies||Highlights the potential problems with vegan and vegetarian diets, including the nutritional deficiencies that may arise when these diets are followed for an extensive period.|
|Bistro MD||They have a vegetarian option as part of their popular meal delivery service.|
|Cinch Diet||created by Cynthia Sass, co-author of the Flat Belly Diet. It is designed put an end to overeating by teaching you how to eat the right combinations of high-nutrient foods that enable you to feel full and satisfied.|
|Crazy Sexy Diet||A low-fat, vegetarian – or better yet, vegan – program that emphasizes balancing your body’s pH by eating more lush whole foods, low-glycemic fruits, raw veggies, alkalizing green drinks, and super-powered green smoothies.|
|Diet-to-Go||They provide a vegetarian option as part of their popular meal delivery service|
|Dietwatch||Online based dieting resource that includes a vegetarian option.|
|Dr. McDougall Diet||A low fat plant-based diet that has been used by many dieters with success to achieve weight loss and for the management of conditions including heart disease and diabetes.|
|Eat to Live||6 week vegetarian rapid weight loss plan.|
|eDiets||They have vegetarian options as part of there extensive online dieting resources as well as vegetarian meal delivery.|
|Engine 2 Diet: 28 Day Firefighter Diet||Created by Rip Esselstyn, a professional athlete turned firefighter, who converted a firehouse full of committed carnivores to a plant-based diet, in the process improving their weight, blood pressure and cholesterol. It involves a low-fat vegan diet and includes lots of tasty recipes.|
|Food Revolution||highlights the negative effects of modern farming methods on our health and the environment and inspires the reader to take action by adopting a vegetarian lifestyle.|
|Forks Over Knives||A book advocating the benefits of a whole foods plant-based diet. It was written by Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr., who are both specialists in the prevention and reversal of chronic diseases through dietary adjustment.|
|Hallelujah Diet||Vegetarian diet 85% raw15% cooked. Biblical based.|
|Healthy Eating, Healthy World||Advocates at least 80 percent whole plant foods.|
|Kind Diet||Alicia Silverstone’s vegan diet.|
|The Lean Diet||30 day plan for gradually going vegan|
|Low Fat Vegan Recipes||Appetite for Reduction will appeal to vegetarians or those interested in eating a plant-based diet.|
|Nu Kitchen Meal Delivery||Offers fresh vegetarian meals as part of their delivery service to the NYC area.|
|Nutrisystem||They offer a vegetarian option for their popular meal delivery service.|
|Ornish Diet||Mostly vegetarian except for eggs and some dairy.|
|Quantum Wellness||A program created by the New York Times bestselling author, Kathy Freston and includes the Vegan 21-day detox diet that was followed by Oprah.|
|Quick and Easy Vegan Cookbook||The 30-Minute Vegan is a quick and easy vegan cookbook that includes over 175 recipes that can be prepared in half an hour or less.|
|The Remedy||Supa Nova introduces readers to the benefits of a healthy diet with an emphasis on a high intake of raw foods and green juices. It includes a five-day cleanse and a five-week program that allows for a gradual adjustment from a standard way of eating to a raw vegan diet.|
|Rice Diet||Very low Calorie vegetarian diet.|
|Self Healing Colitis and Crohn’s||This vegan diet show’s how these conditions can be treated with diet.|
|Spectrum Diet||Lacto-vegetarian plan that gradually helps people transition into a healthier way of eating.|
|Super Immunity Diet||Dr. Joel Fuhrman offers readers a scientifically supported program to boost the defenses of the body by eating a high nutrient plant-based diet.|
|Starch Solution||Dr. John McDougall outlines the scientific research in support of the health and weight loss benefits of a starch-based diet.|
|Thrive Foods Plant Based Recipes||A cookbook created by professional Ironman triathlete, Brendan Brazier. The book provides dieters with options for meals that are high in nutrients in relation to their calories.|
|Thrive: Vegan Triathlete Diet||A vegan diet with a high percentage of raw foods that is specifically targeted towards athletes and physically active individuals.|
|Veganist: Kathy Freston||Includes step-by-step instructions that will allow you to gradually adopt a vegan diet to improve your health and support the environment.|
|Vegetarian Pregnancy Diet||Highlights the importance of a healthy diet during pregnancy and provides women with the information they need to create a nutritionally balanced vegetarian diet.|
|Weight Loss Kick Start Diet||Provides day-by-day instructions on how to transition to a low-fat vegan diet. This approach has been clinically proven to be effective for long-term weight management, as well as for the management of cardiovascular disease.|
|World Peace Diet: Green Peace||Puts forward the premise that what we eat has an impact on our spiritual awareness as well as the health of the planet. A vegan ‘green’ diet is emphasized because it is beneficial for the planet and supports an attitude of non-violence through compassion towards animals.|
|Your Natural Diet: Alive Raw Foods||The authors state that the natural diet of human beings was composed of raw fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts and as such they advocate a diet composed entirely of raw plant foods.|
|You Are What You Eat||Strictly vegetarian for first 8 weeks then some fish and organic chicken can be added.|
Typical Vegetarian Eating Plan
There are many processed foods that are made specifically for vegans: hot dogs, burgers, taco filling, ground beef,
chicken strips, mayonnaise, sour cream, ice cream, chili (Hormel). These products are made with meat substitutes – such as soy.
More sample vegan menus
Breakfast: Rice krispies with soy milk.
Lunch: Vegetable soup with crackers.
Dinner: Fajita salad with veggie chicken strips (by Morningstar Farms).
Snack: Peanut butter with carrot sticks.
Breakfast: Apple cinnamin oatmeal.
Lunch: Baked potatoes with Smart Balance.
Snack: Tortilla chips and salsa.