Vegetarian Diet: Health Benefits of Vegetarianism Essay

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Many Americans are eating unhealthy diets in the typical American style characterized by lack of moderation. This average diet is defined by high contents of red meat and other fatty foods. Eating these types of food, and the following factor of being overweight, can lead to heart disease and other health problems. A vegetarian lifestyle, on the other hand, limits the intake of meat and other fatty animal products and is known to confer a wide range of health benefits. However, there are many different types of vegetarianism. First, there is the semi vegetarian, who is someone who simply limits meat intake to some degree, the lacto-ovovegetarian, who cuts out all meat, but not animal products such as cheese and eggs, and then the vegan, …show more content…
These types of foods are easier to make or come by, but are not healthy as the base of a diet. Eating mainly cheese and pasta can lead to higher cholesterol and fat intake, as well as leaving a person devoid of important vitamins and minerals. It is true, then, that a meatless diet can not always be considered a healthy one, especially if too high a proportion of high fat dairy products are consumed (Journal).

Many people believe that a vegetarian diet will deprive people of vitamins and minerals that are beneficial and necessary for human life. This is far from true. One weighty argument against vegetarianism, is that this type of diet lacks complete proteins. For the lacto-ovovegetarian this can be solved by eating eggs, which contain complete proteins. Protein deficiency can also be avoided by choosing from many pairings of incomplete proteins in vegetarian foods which, when combined, give all the essential amino acids needed in adequate amounts. Some of these combinations are milk and cereal, peanut butter and bread, beans and rice, beans and corn tortillas, and macaroni and cheese (Yahoo). Although most vegetarian diets meet or exceed the recommended diet allowances for protein, they often provide less protein than non-vegetarian diets. This is actually a health benefit, not a concern. This lower protein intake may be associated with better calcium retention in vegetarians and improved kidney function in

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