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Types of Vegetarians: Choosing Your Own Style

Updated on August 4, 2014

The Diversity of Vegetarianism Allows You Choose Your Own Style

Don't be fooled into thinking that vegetarians are folks who just don't eat meat. There are indeed several different types of vegetarians. So if you're considering becoming a vegetarian, know this: you'll have a whole lot of freedom as to how broad you make your diet and how "deep" you go into the vegetarian lifestyle.

In your quest for a healthier way of life, it's just plain smart to know where you wish to enter the vegetarian world and to what degree you ultimately want to craft your eating regimen.

Here are the basic types of vegetarians you should be aware of . . .

Basic Types of Vegetarians

Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian

Simply put, a lacto-ovo vegetarian removes meat from their diet while continuing to enjoy dairy (lacto) and egg (ovo) products.

As a newbie vegetarian, you can be comfortable with this approach because you get many of the health benefits from eliminating meat from your diet and you are doing something to help the animal rights cause without being too extreme.


An ovo-vegetarian eliminates meat and dairy products but includes eggs as a staple of his or her diet. It's another compromise but a nice “next step” if you want to move on to a more restrictive diet while continuing to enjoy your morning omelet, for example.

Lacto Vegetarian

A lacto vegetarian chooses to include dairy products such as milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, cream, and kefir but exclude eggs.

This diet may be adopted by vegetarians wishing to lower their cholesterol levels (and there are high amounts of cholesterol contained in egg yolks). Another reason for excluding eggs would be to protest cruelty in the poultry industry.

Vegan Vegetarian

A vegan vegetarian subscribes to the purest form of vegetarianism: eliminating all animal products and by-products (e.g., dairy, eggs, honey). Vegans only eat vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains and legumes. And for this reason, veganism is viewed as the most restrictive form of vegetarianism.

This may be a little extreme for new vegetarians but it certainly can be a goal for the future, if you choose.

One of My Favorite Vegetarian Resources - For the Newbie or Seasoned Vegetarian

The New Becoming Vegetarian: The Essential Guide To A Healthy Vegetarian Diet
The New Becoming Vegetarian: The Essential Guide To A Healthy Vegetarian Diet

Comprehensive and well-researched, this new edition provides everything you need to know about making a healthy transition to a vegetarian diet or maximizing its benefits if already a vegetarian.


Thanks for reading and let me know you stopped by . . .

Was This Helpful? - What do you think of my Why Veg page?

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Great information.

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 

      7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Love this short and sweet lens on different types of vegetarians...helpful indeed!

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Yes, useful and informative.

    • hlkljgk profile image


      8 years ago from Western Mass

      good info. welcome to the Why Veg club!


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