So you’ve made up your mind to stop eating meat and become a vegetarian. Good for you! Vegetarianism is a much healthier form of eating but in the beginning it may be difficult to find vegetarian foods to eat. Your other problem may be finding suitable Non-vegetarian foods for you. Let me help you through this.
NUTRITION-If you are a woman, your consumption of eggs and dairy products should decrease, but your meat consumption should increase. Instead of eating cheese, butter and lard every day, you should find substitutes for these unhealthy products. Cheese can always be replaced with beans, as the unhealthy fat in it is very bad for your body. You should find low-fat dairy products and soy products. Eggs are also a very unhealthy food as they contain a lot of cholesterol which has been proven to increase the risk of having heart diseases. In replacement of eggs, you can use tofu to eat or use it in baking. Soy milk and soy yogurt are also very suitable alternatives to eggs.
FRUITS AND VEGETABLES-Fruits and vegetables are the foods that you should focus on. These are the foods that you body craves; not only is it healthy, but it also provide the antioxidants that the body requires to have a healthy immune system. Replace white bread with whole grain bread to obtain more fiber. These include whole grain breads, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, and oatmeal. When it comes to pasta, choose whole wheat instead of regular pasta. These non-starchy vegetables include squash, baby potatoes, onions, green beans, asparagus, and broccoli. Even if you are not big into vegetables, you can always get your daily intake of fiber by having fruit.
Dairy products such as milk, ice cream, and cheese should be eaten in very small amounts. This is because dairy products contain a lot of saturated fat and sugar. You can try low-fat or skim milk. Skim milk is the healthy option because it does not have the excessive sugar that cannot be properly digested. This takes more time to digest. If dairy products are a big part of your meals, you should decrease the amount; however, you can always opt for calcium supplements to help you meet your daily calcium recommendation.
CHEMICALS-Chemicals are found in almost all the foods that we eat. It may not be very convenient to peel the food and separate the chemicals from it, but it’s still better to have them on a daily basis to be healthy. When it comes to the list of chemicals, remember that there are good and bad chemicals. Your daily task is to decide which good chemicals you want to increase and decrease in your diet. The bad chemicals, or free radicals, decrease your immune system’s functions; which can lead to a healthy amount of body fat. Among the good chemicals are vitamin C and iodine.
OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS- The number one healthy non-essential fatty acid. You can find omega-3 fatty acids in the seeds of flax seeds and most nuts. These are rich in an antioxidant called phytonutrient trimethylglycine. Omega-3 is healthy for brain function and most other cells in the body so it’s a wise choice for everyone. Best if you can have it in the form of a supplement because it isn’t water-soluble, which means you can flush it out of your system through water use.
EPA AND DHA- These two fatty acids are the best. They are a bit more expensive than some of the other nutrients on the list, but they are well worth the extra money. EPA and DHA work in aiding your cells to renew at a healthy rate. They fight inflammation and do a good job of lowering your risk of heart disease. They are found in fish and are present in the bodily parts of algae and fish.
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