Nowadays, with the advent of globalization and mass media, even the eating habits of people have evolved into a variety of lifestyle practices. More and more have embraced vegetarianism not only due to cultural factors or religious belief but because of the health benefits it confers.
Increasing studies show that consuming more fruits and vegetables and less meat reduces the incidence of many diseases including different types of cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Other overall health benefits include a strengthened immune system, the lowering of cholesterol levels and weight loss.
The influence of Hollywood’s vegetarian celebrities have also triggered people to try out this way of eating. Little do they know that aside from a professional culinary team, these showbiz personalities most likely have the help of fitness trainers, beauty experts and other professionals. However, one does not have to employ a personal chef to be able to enjoy great tasting flavorful vegetarian dishes at home.
Explore and take your pick from a variety of meatless dishes for everyday enjoyment to festive food for special occasions that appeal to all ages. Savor a fabulous feast from simple no-cook dishes with only a few ingredients to more challenging complex dishes involving different components and multiple stages of cooking.
Contrary to popular belief, dishes devoid of meat can both be tasty and complete in macro-nutrients, most especially protein and micronutrients like vitamins and minerals (calcium and iron). Surprisingly, amino and omega fatty acids which most people think predominantly come from meat and fish can be sourced from plants.
A challenge faced by those exploring going meatless is the seemingly lack of ingredients they can use. However, with a little imagination and creativity, a virtual parade of dishes can be crafted from the abundance of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and healthy oils from the plant kingdom–from appetizers to soups, pasta, entrees, sandwiches, desserts, snacks and drinks.
One very important factor that individuals who are turning vegetarian is to seek the advice of health professionals who can guide them in a sensible and sustainable eating plan that provides adequate and complete nutrients. It is also recommended, especially those who are considering becoming vegan (a diet completely devoid of all animal products including dairy, eggs), to get counsel from those who have gone through the path and experienced the various effects of the transition.
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