Supporters of vegetarianism are increasing. In general, a plant-based diet helps lower blood pressure and lowers the risk of heart disease. Even if you abstain from eating meat for just one day a week, your risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and obesity drops.
However, starting a vegetarian diet without first checking your body condition can have the opposite effect.
◆ Are you taking enough vitamins?
You can get a variety of nutrients without eating meat. However, you need to carefully monitor your diet as you are concerned about some nutrient deficiencies. For example, vitamin B12 is a nutrient found in meat. It is difficult to consume through a vegan diet. Also, when planning a vegan diet, you should pay attention to whether it contains enough vitamin D, calcium, omega-3 fatty acids, and iron.
In order to supplement vitamin B12, it is good to eat eggs or dairy products ‘lacto-vegetarian’. To supplement omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, and iron, there is a way to eat ‘pesco vegetarian’, which includes fish.
◆ Are you making a meal plan?
If you want to become a vegetarian, it is most important to plan your diet systematically. Also, you need to pay attention to the cooking method. Eating a plant-based diet does not automatically make you healthy. If you cook foods that contain a lot of processed foods, sodium, or sugar, the meaning of vegetarianism fades.
The proper amount of a meal, moderate additives, and nutrient balance must all be considered to be effective. You should plan a vegetarian diet considering your constitution and health condition. Rather than a plan not to eat meat unconditionally, flexible thinking is also needed, such as eating meat 2 to 3 days a week depending on the situation.
◆ Are you exercising at the same time?
If you are a person who usually exercise a lot or build muscle, protein intake is important. So, is it possible to supplement protein with only a vegetarian diet? Even on a vegan diet, you can get enough protein from tofu, nuts, quinoa, and lentils. However, if you are a person with a lot of exercise, it is better to plan a more specific diet.