Becoming a Vegetarian is a Personal Choice

There are many different reasons for becoming a vegetarian. It's often for ethical reasons, health reasons, environmental reasons or any combination of the three.

becoming a vegetarian

Despite the reason any of us made the decision to become vegetarian, we all find our own way to make that leap and stick with it long enough to feel normal in your new day to day routine. Just like anything else you take on that you've never done before. You'll make it however you can.

What is the difference bettween vegetarian and vegan?

Vegetarians eat a variety of foods depending on their diet restrictions. Vegans are in essence, very strict vegetarians, because they restrict themselves to only products that contain no animal ingredients or by-product.

To give you a better understanding of the different types of vegetarians, I've listed them below along with their diet restrictions.

MOST VEGETARIANS EAT: A large variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes and whole grains. Beyond this, diet restrictions are listed below

  1. Vegans avoid EVERYTHING that contains animal ingredients or by-product, including honey, as it was produced by bees
  2. Raw vegetarians eat only raw foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds
  3. Ovo-vegetarians eat eggs but not dairy products
  4. Lacto-vegetarians eat dairy products but not eggs
  5. Lacto-Ovo vegetarians eat dairy products and eggs
  6. Pescatarians eat eggs, dairy products and fish

Here's the vegetarian food pyramid as a visual if you need one

Becoming a Vegetarian for Health Reasons

If you're considering becoming a vegetarian for health reasons, make sure you research the lifestyle and the options available to you before getting started. You need to at least be aware of the vitamins and minerals you need to balance your diet.

fresh ingredients for vegetarian recipes

I commend you for making such a choice. As you are taking the healthful approach, make sure you stick to a diet of mostly whole, natural products.

Eat plenty of whole grains, get your protein but not too much, make sure you eat lots of fruits and vegetables.

Your body functions so much better when you nourish it properly. Be prepared for a bit of a transition but if you stick with it, you won't regret the final outcome.

There are a lot of people who believe becoming a vegetarian is simply a matter of giving up meat, however, there is much more to it than that.

Depending on what you are cutting out of your diet, you truly have to do some research to know what you are looking at on the ingredient label and ensure you aren't consuming something you shouldn't be.

You have to be aware of the foods that you eat, you have to look at EVERY label, you have to educate yourself if you are to truly become a vegetarian. If you aren't aware of what is going into your food, you cannot be aware about what is going into your body.

Click here to learn what healthy vegetarians eat and how to get started replacing the processed foods in your diet with whole, unrefined alternatives.

Becoming a Vegetarian for Ethical Reasons

It is absolutely abhorrent the way animals are treated before they are slaughtered. Many are pumped so full of antibiotics and other crap to make them grow larger or 'produce' more that they can't even hold up their own weight.

They are forced to live in their own waste with thousands of other animals whose care is neglected as they await their horrible fate.

Chickens are forced to have their beaks cut off and then caged, where they suffer months of pain, all so they won't peck the chickens who are mashed in around them in those itty bitty cages.

Baby chicks who are born male are of no use alive, so they are ground up live and used as filler for all types of food products.

It is beyond horrifying to watch any living, breathing creature being treated this way, and I cannot tell you how many times it brought me to tears. The horror in the eyes of the animals who so obviously knew they were doomed was absolutely heartbreaking.

This is what solidified my decision to become a vegetarian, and to this day, it's what keeps me strong when people question and criticize my way of life.

I wanted others who visit our site to be aware, if they aren't already, of the terrible cruelty that these animals endure only to be slaughtered and eaten by humans who feel they don't deserve the right to life.

New to Vegetarianism? Where to Start:

Whenever you are ready to take the plunge, don't just quit cold turkey. Ok... you can, but make sure you aren't setting yourself up to fail. New habits take a couple of weeks to form so you will have to make sure you are doing your part to ensure your diet changes stick.

Start out by replacing a couple nights a week with vegetarian options. Or replace 1 main animal product staple in your diet with a vegetarian option. Once you master your first hurdle... move on to the next, until you're living animal free.

Some great easy meat replacements for new vegetarians are:

  • Morningstar Grillers Recipe Crumbles - Comparable to 1 lb, ground beef
  • Boca Chik'n Patties - These are great for sandwiches or to cut up on a salad
  • Amy's frozen vegetarian entrees - I've had several. They're all good
  • Canned black beans (or any style beans you like, low sodium)

If you're not sure how to cook vegetarian meals, we've got plenty of simple vegetarian recipes for you to browse through.

If you'd like more information about living a vegetarian lifestyle check out:

If you have any questions, concerns, or topic suggestions feel free to give us a shout.

We look forward to talking with you.

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