You might be knowing who is vegetarians but the term “vegetarian” can mean different things to different people:
- A true vegetarian eats no meat at all, including poultry and fish.
- A lacto-ovo vegetarian eats dairy products and eggs,
- A lacto vegetarian eats dairy products but not eggs.
- An ovo vegetarian eats eggs but not dairy products.
Less commonly practiced is the form of vegetarianism known as veganism. A vegan (pronounced: VEE-gun) doesn’t consume any animal-derived foods or use animal products or byproducts, and eats only plant-based foods.
A vegan diet includes all grains, beans, legumes, vegetables and fruits, and the nearly infinite number of foods made by combining them. Vegan people do not eat meat, eggs, dairy products and all other animal-derived ingredients.
- Green veggies: The king of healthy plant food. Kale, broccoli, darker lettuces, chard, collard greens, mustard greens, arugula, green beans. Eat as much of these as you can, every day.
- Other veggies: Orange and red and yellow veggies like carrots and red bell peppers and squash and tomatoes and pumpkin and sweet potatoes, along with all kinds of mushrooms, onions and garlic, cauliflower. Pile these on, throw them in stir-fries, put them in soups!
- Plant proteins: Despite what many people believe, protein is easy to get on a vegan diet. Beans of all kinds (black beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, white beans, pinto beans), lentils, soy beans . Raw nuts like almonds and walnuts. Seeds like flaxseeds, hemp, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds.
- Fruits: Berries and pomegranates are the king of this category, but apples, oranges, grapes, mangoes, kiwi fruit, bananas, peaches, apricots, papayas, pears and so forth are all amazing. Don’t be afraid of fruits.
- Good fats: Don’t be afraid of fats, but just go for the good ones and minimize trans and saturated fats. If you eat saturated fats, get them from plants (coconuts). Popular fats: nuts of all kinds, avocados, ground flaxseeds, olive and canola oil. You can take a vegan EPA-DHA supplement(like fish oil, but from algae instead) for extra health — brain, joint, heart health, among other good benefits.
- Whole grains: Many people these days who try to be healthy are afraid of grains. There is no scientific evidence that it is bad for health however, avoid white flour, and in fact most flour should be minimized altogether. If you’re going to eat bread, try flourless sprouted grain breads. Other good choices: quinoa (actually a seed, not a grain), brown rice, amaranth, millet, steel-cut oats. If you’re allergic or intolerant to gluten, of course avoid gluten, but most people can eat gluten just fine.
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