Want to change your diet to a healthier one and thinking about going vegetarian? See which myths about it are not worth believing.
Are you deficient in iron and protein? Your diet probably costs a lot! What do you actually eat? – such words are often said by people on a traditional diet, and are addressed to vegetarians. Giving up meat is becoming increasingly popular and more and more people are convinced to it, but there are still a lot of myths around it, which are definitely not worth believing. Vegetarianism is actually not only a diet, but often also a lifestyle. But can it be dangerous?
Myth 1: vegetarian diet is low in protein and iron
Although the content of protein and iron in vegetarian dishes is lower than in those containing meat, their amounts are sufficient to meet the needs of the human body. Of course, it is important to make sure that the diet is balanced and wisely planned.
Dairy and plant-based products are often an underrated source of protein. Products such as tofu, pulses, seeds or nuts are not only high-protein foods, but also contain valuable nutrients. In addition, it is worth bearing in mind that the level of protein in the diet of people living in Western countries is often higher than it should be, and this can lead to conditions such as atherosclerosis, gout and certain cancers.
Myth 2: vegetarianism is expensive
Many people think that since most vegetarian substitutes for products such as milk, cold cuts and pate are expensive, being on a vegetarian diet requires a lot more money than being on a traditional diet. However, this is a faulty way of thinking.
A properly sized, varied vegetarian diet consists mainly of commonly available and inexpensive foods, rather than processed substitutes. Such foods include porridge, oatmeal, fresh fruits and vegetables or seeds, such as sunflower seeds.
Myth 3: vegetarian diet is boring and difficult
Some people associate vegetarianism with boring, monotonous and unpalatable meals, whose main ingredient is lettuce. In addition, they think that in order to create a vegetarian meal that they really like, you have to spend many hours in the kitchen and really work on it. Nothing could be further from the truth!
A vegetarian menu can be very rich and tasty, and preparing a delicious dish can take as much time as a traditional one. You can not complain about a lack of inspiration – the web is full of simple recipes for healthy plant-based meals, which will certainly taste good not only to vegetarians.
Myth 4: not eating meat, you are eternally hungry
By eating plenty of vegetables, especially pulses, you provide your body with large amounts of fibre, which is responsible for the feeling of satiety. The same is true for whole grain bread or pasta.
However, there are people who find it difficult to imagine a day without meat – they believe that it provides them with energy and only it makes them feel really full. Meanwhile, a meal based on rice, groats or pasta with added vegetables can effectively satisfy hunger without causing an uncomfortable feeling of heaviness (which often accompanies the consumption of a meat dish).
Myth 5: not eating meat helps you lose weight
Many meatless foods are low in calories, such as most vegetables and fruits. However, this does not change the fact that they are only part of a vegetarian menu – after all, products such as cereals and nuts provide a lot of energy.
If in a vegetarian’s diet there will be too many fried dishes, with a lot of sugar, salt and fat, sweets or baked goods from white flour, he may quickly begin to put on weight and lead to overweight. Not eating meat can be healthy, but only if your diet is thoughtful and balanced.
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