Advantages of Vegetarianism
Alright!! Let me set the record straight at the beginning. I am neither a vegetarianism Nazi nor am I advocating vegetarianism here. I was born and brought up in a vegetarian family. A few years ago, I also had my fling with non-vegetarian delicacies. And yes, I absolutely love some of them. However, I have an analytical mind and I love comparing things, especially when someone says that a particular thing is bad. That is how the topic of advantages of vegetarianism came to my mind.
As I said before, I am not urging people to convert into vegetarians. However, when I look at why people suggest that being vegetarian is good, I feel like doing more research about it. Here are some of the facts about vegetarian diet and the advantages of vegetarianism.
- Less fat and cholesterol
I guess you knew that this was coming. Meat contains a lot of cholesterol and saturated fatty acids, especially when it comes to red meat. This doesn’t mean that meat like chicken does not contain unhealthy fats or cholesterol. These too contain significantly higher level of cholesterol and fats compared to vegetables and fruits. As any layman knows, too much cholesterol and saturated fats are bad for our health especially for the heart.
- Easy to digest
Let us be very honest here. It is common sense that it is harder to digest meat then digesting vegetables and fruits just because the fat and cholesterol content is higher whereas, vegetarian diet is usually high in fiber content which means that it also keeps your digestive and excretory system clean. This naturally means that you require more physical exercise to digest meat and keep your system clean than required for a vegetarian diet.
- Lower incidence of health problems
This is another advantage of being a vegetarian. Through research it has been found that people who follow a vegetarian diet are less prone to colorectal cancer. This is due to the high fiber content in vegetarian diet. Another reason for this lower rate of cancer in vegetarians is the amount of antioxidants present in a plant-based diet. It is also found that people who follow plant-based diet are less prone to breast cancer than people who do not.
- The myth of low protein content
There may be a common misconception among non-vegetarians that people who follow a vegetarian diet get lower protein content. The truth cannot be farther from this. There is no doubt that meat contains proteins. However, plants too are good sources of amino acids and proteins. Why look somewhere else when soybeans are known to be excellent sources of proteins? Legumes too are known to be excellent sources of proteins. Did you also known that overloading of proteins can harm your kidney? And there is nothing more than ham or beef to give you an overload of proteins.
- The myth of unhealthy living
Another common misconception among non-vegetarians is that people who don't eat meat are skinny and non-healthy. I wouldn’t say that after seeing Pamela Anderson or Richard Gere. What ultimately decides your health is the right kind and amount of nutrition you are taking and your healthy way of living life. In fact vegetarian diet is known to have more nutrients than meat.
These are just some advantages of vegetarianism. Again as I said earlier, I am not advocating being a vegetarian. What one eats is his/her choice. Vegetarian food too may have its own disadvantages. However, from your health point of view, it is also good to keep in mind that increasing your vegetables and fruit intake and reducing your meat intake can keep you healthier in the long run.