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Live Well, Work Well
According to the FDA, vegetarians are less likely to be obese.
Vegetarian and Vegan Diets
Everyone makes food choices in different ways. For some, it is more than simply out of hunger or craving; their food choices are a way
of life.
Vegetarianism is a choice to abstain from eating meat products. Those who are vegan do not eat anything containing animal products
(such as dairy and eggs), and prefer not to use products made of fur, leather, wool or down feathers.
Why Vegetarianism?
• Substances in meat (such as saturated fat) can cause heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, kidney disease, obesity and diabetes.
• Cow milk has the right amount of fat and protein for young calves but too much for humans.
• Eggs have the highest amount of cholesterol of any food.
• Meat products contain pesticides and synthetic additives given to livestock, which may cause health problems in humans.
• Vegetarians believe animal agriculture uses excess amounts of the earth’s resources. Instead of giving this to animals, these
resources could be used to feed people. It is estimated that the grain used annually to feed livestock could feed 1.3 billion people.
Eating a Meatless Diet
If becoming a vegetarian or vegan sounds like a lifestyle choice that is right for you, here’s how to transform your diet:
• Gradually substitute meat products in your meals with vegetarian options. Add new foods regularly and slowly eliminate meat
• Eliminate red meat first and then pork, poultry and fish.
• Substitute eggs and dairy products (for vegans only).
There are many meat substitutes available that have a similar look, texture, taste and nutritional benefits to their meat counterparts.
For instance, tofu and tempeh (made from soybeans) hot dogs, hamburgers, sausage links, etc. are high in protein and calcium.
Vegans have the option to purchase soy, rice and nut milk, and soy margarines, cheeses and ice cream.
Those who adopt this lifestyle must be aware of the health responsibilities that go along with it. Since you are not consuming any
meat (or animal products, for vegans), you must replace the amino acids, vitamin B12, iron, calcium, vitamin D, zinc and essential
fatty acids in your diet.
Eating soy, beans and peas along with grains like rice, wheat and oats provide complete proteins and amino acids. Beyond this, dark
green vegetables, fruits and legumes will replace vitamin D, calcium, iron, vitamin C and zinc.
Taking a multivitamin to replace lost nutrients, and flaxseed for omega-3 essential fatty acids, will provide nutritional value similar to
what is found in meat products