We all know that leading a vegetarian lifestyle implies sticking to a plant-based diet. You can opt for different vegetarian lifestyles, the strictest of which eschews the use of any products made of or tested on animals, also referred to as a "cruelty-free" lifestyle, or veganism. Special attention is paid to the content of dishes because there are various seemingly vegetarian foods which contain non-vegetarian ingredients.
Consider Types of Diets
If you fiercely oppose animal farming, deciding on veganism and excluding animal products and by-products seems quite logical. If the reasons behind your decision are a mixture of ethical and nutritional concerns, you can choose between the more common lacto-ovo diet (in which dairy products and eggs are acceptable), lacto diet (in which you eat dairy products but no eggs), or ovo diet, (which includes eggs but no dairy products). This splendid article elaborates on this topic.
Evaluate Non-Vegetarian Ingredients
Within a vegetarian diet, close attention should be paid to the ingredients found in foods. For instance, the majority of soups in restaurants and grocery stores are off-limits for vegetarians because they are commonly prepared using non-vegetarian soup stocks, while vegetable-based Asian dishes often contain fish oils. By the same token, glycerin and gelatin, common in candies, cookies, sweet sodas and liqueurs, usually come from non-vegetarian sources. In case your diet allows cheese, you should know that there are those containing animal-based rennet, so you should avoid them. Because of the diversity and pervasiveness of non-vegetarian ingredients, a vegetarian diet can be seen as a learning process.
Don't Forget Dietary Supplements
Depending on the diet of your choice, dietary supplements can be instrumental in ensuring a healthy transition to a proper vegetarian lifestyle. You diet may lack in important nutrients, such as vitamins D and B-12, omega-3 fatty acids and iron. Some omega fatty acid-fortified foods and supplements contain fish oils, such as yogurts, margarines and omega-rich orange juices. Fish oils can also be found in foods fortified with vitamin D, such as some dairy alternatives and orange juices. If you are looking for a genuine vegetarian source of this vitamin, search the ingredients list for plant-derived vitamin D-2. Certain nutritional supplements and medications are available as gel capsules, which commonly contain non-vegetarian gelatin. In any case, if you are uncertain about any supplement or medication, simply consult with your pharmacist or nutritionist for vegetarian options.
Weigh Weight Loss
You can see weight gain even as a vegetarian, due to different factors (excessive consumption of carbs, for example). If this happens, there are several tips you can follow to lose weight. Consuming whole grains can help, but only those that are easy to digest. Additionally, you should drink plenty of water because you need to eat fiber-rich foods which need water to help you lose weight, and you can also try some organic teas for weight loss. It goes without saying that you’ll also need to properly exercise in order to accomplish the long-lasting weight loss you seek.