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Vegetarian Lifestyle Health Benefits.

Updated on November 5, 2014

The benefits of a Vegetarian Lifestyle are too numerous to count.

As a former owner of a health food store (De Korenbloem in Belgium) I can tell you that the benefits of being a vegetarian are numerous.

There's the health aspect, in that eating a vegetarian diet has been proven over and over again to give numerous health benefits. From lower cholesterol and fat to lower rates cancer, diabetes are arteriosclerosis, a vegetarian diet is seen as a much healthier choice than the SAD diet (Standard American Diet).

From a 'save the planet' standpoint the benefits are just as numerous, as plants need less water, make less waste, and consume less natural resources than any type of livestock.

So yes, the benefits abound. This Lens will outline a few of them and give some advice and information about the vegetarian lifestyle. Enjoy!

Images courtesy of sxc.hu

Health Benefits of a Vegetarian Diet.

Don't be SAD anymore!

According to studies, vegetarians have better health than people that eat meat. They have lower rates of coronary artery disease, gallstones, cancer, kidney stones, colon disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. It has been shown that a vegetarian diet can also help cure these diseases.

In 1961, the Journal of the American Medical Association stated that ninety to ninety-seven percent of heart disease, the cause of more than half the deaths in the United States, could be prevented by a vegetarian diet.

In 1990, the British Medical Journal Lancet reported on a study by Dr Dean Ornish of the University of California. Dr Ornish found that a vegetarian diet reversed clogging of the arteries in patients with serious heart disease.

In 1990, Dr Walter Willet, who conducted a study of diet and colon cancer, said, "If you step back and look at the data, the optimum amount of red meat you eat should be zero."

The National Academy of Science reported in 1983 that "people may be able to prevent many common cancers by eating less fatty meats and more vegetables and grain."

The USDA recommends that people reduce saturated fat and cholesterol, which are in high amounts in animal products, and low in vegetarian diets.

Vegetarians have much lower cholesterol levels than people that eat meat. Heart disease is found much less in vegetarians. Studies have also shown that vegetarians have up to half the cancer rate than those of non-vegetarians. Cases of breast cancer are much lower in countries that have low meat diets.

Vegetarians eat more antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotenes and phytochemicals. Phyotochemicals are components in plants that help to prevent disease. Antioxidants decrease the chance of getting heart disease, cancer and other diseases.

According to a study done in England for 12 years of 5,015 meat eaters and 6,115 vegetarians, it was found that vegetarians had 40% less chance of getting cancer.

According to William Castelli, MD, director of the Framingham Heart Study, vegetarians live three to six years longer than meat eaters. He said, "vegetarians have the best diet. They have the lowest rate of coronary disease of any group in the country and they have a fraction of our heart attack rate and they have only 40% of our cancer rate."

Grains and plant foods contain fiber, while animal products contain almost none. Because fiber is necessary for proper stool production, lack of proper fiber accounts for societies with meat-based diets to have higher cases of colon cancer. The main reasons why people need to take laxatives is because of lack of fiber in their diet and not drinking enough water.

It is important to get enough leafy vegetables that are high in antioxidants, which are good for overall health.

Tips on becoming a Vegetarian

Do you have a fave Vegetarian recipe, restaurant or cookbook? - Tell us about it!

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    • profile image

      laurenrich 

      5 years ago

      This is a great lens. It is very helpful. Thanks

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      5 years ago

      Great lens, although I am not a vegetarian, I do love more than my fair share of vegetables. Love raw cabbage, cauliflower and carrots in particular. squidliked.

    • theinformationguy profile image

      theinformationguy 

      5 years ago

      Great lens ! My Wife is vegetarian , I am not quite there yet , but working on it.

    • am23g23 profile image

      am23g23 

      5 years ago

      Interesting info about vegetables, never knew they could yield so much protein! Thanks for sharing.

    • kaylee33 profile image

      kaylee33 

      5 years ago

      I've been a vegetarian for quite awhile now and knew the health benefits, but some of these great facts came as a shock to me. Well done!

    • LiliLove profile image

      LiliLove 

      5 years ago

      Very informative - thanks for sharing!

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 

      5 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      Great information. I am not a vegetarian but eat very little meat. I can see the benefits, for sure.

    • ismeedee profile image

      ismeedee 

      5 years ago

      Definitely as I've been primarily vegetarian (apart from fish!) most of my life!

    • profile image

      karthic-suresh 

      5 years ago

      yes many like to share

    • takkhisa profile image

      Takkhis 

      5 years ago

      What a nice lens! I like having lots of vegetables, eat it everyday.

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 

      6 years ago

      Gosh, I don't have one favorite Vegetarian recipe ... I've thought about going Vegan, but haven't quite committed to it yet. Pretty impressive stats!

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