You might be surprised at how many diets without meat there are. If you think of vegans immediately, it isn’t too surprising. That’s what people normally consider, a diet that has absolutely no animal products. Vegans not only cut out meat, fish, eggs and dairy, they also exclude food that contain those products. That includes food that has gelatin in, which is made from animal parts. Sweets, fruit snacks, many confections and even the frosting on Pop Tarts has gelatin. Any food with milk or eggs in the ingredients are not in the diet.
A lacto-vegetarian diet includes milk.
If you’re a lacto-vegetarian, you don’t eat meat, poultry, fish or eggs, but you do have dairy in your diet. Milk is allowed, so is cheese, yogurt and butter. If eggs are added to the diet, it’s a lacto-ovo-vegetarian diet. By adding milk and eggs, it makes it easier to get all the types of protein that otherwise requires combining plant proteins for a strict vegetarian to achieve a completion. In the same vein of thought, ovo-vegetarians include eggs, but not dairy.
Pesco-vegetarians eat fish and seafood.
You get a wider variety of food as a pesco-vegetarian, also known as pescatarians. These people do not consume poultry or meat, but do include fish of all types in their diet, including shellfish. They may or may not include eggs and dairy, besides the fruits, vegetables and grain they consume. This type of diet tends to mirror a Mediterranean diet. It’s considered one of the healthiest diets by some and probably the easiest to follow. The Omega-3 fatty acid from the fish is just one reason for that.
There’s even a word for people that eat meat, but not much of it.
If you’re a flexitarian, you’re more of a vegetarian than a carnivore. You eat meat, but tend to eat more plant based protein than animal protein and get most of your calories from plant sources. While you aren’t restricted to fish or strictly vegetables, that tends to be what is on your plate. Cutting back on meat, having several days a week that are meatless, tends to be done more for health reasons, than moral or environmental reason. It’s far easier to design a balanced diet for a flexitarian than it is for other types of vegetarians, since everything can be consumed. It’s just a matter of how much.
- Even if you aren’t a vegetarian, having a meatless Monday might be a boost to your health, but only if you’re replacing that meat with a healthy option.
- Some people start out with one day a week meatless for their health and find out it makes a big difference in their budget and extend it to more days for even more savings.
- Meatless meals and diets are catching on across America. You’ll find that even fast foods offer meatless options.
- If you’re going vegan, eliminating all animal products, from your diet, study how to get a complete protein for each meal by making food combinations. Peanut or nut butter on whole wheat bread is one way and whole grain rice with beans is another.
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