"A vegetarian does not eat any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish or crustacea, or the by-products of slaughter"
Vegetarian Society

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Five Things I Have Learned Since Becoming a Vegetarian (by Jonathan Young)

Before adopting a vegetarian diet a year ago I had a number of concerns. Would I be getting the right vitamins? Would I get bored of eating the same things? Would I always be hungry? Would I be judged by others?

The journey has been interesting and rewarding. Here are some of the things I have learned along the way.

1. It's been surprisingly easy! My biggest surprise was how easy the transition to a meat-free diet was. There is so much help out there. The BBC Good food website has been a great source of culinary inspiration, and there lots of excellent vegetarian cookbooks. My favourite is The Happy Pear - which is packed with recipes, health advice and inspirational stories.

The Vegetarian Society is also great. Its website provides loads of accessible nutritional information which is especially useful if you are looking for alternative sources of iron, protein and other key nutrients. As a member I receive lots of useful tips and stories in their emails and magazines.
Eating out has also been easy. Pub menus are often limited - I once had to settle for chips and onion rings for my main course - but most places cater for everyone. Italian and Indian restaurants are a banker and I recommend an app called Happy Cow which tells you the nearest veggie-friendly restaurants wherever you are in the world.

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Monday, 8 February 2016

Want to Go Vegetarian? 7 Steps To Help You Get Started

There is no doubt that vegetarianism is becoming increasingly more popular. Even some people resort to part-time veganism or vegetarianism so they don’t have to fully give up animal foods.

With the recent news about meat, and its potential to cause cancer, more people are thinking about going vegetarian. Some people want to become vegetarian to live a longer, healthier life, and others may want to do their part in decreasing pollution. Either way, there are plenty of benefits to the lifestyle change.

There is plenty of research that displays the health and environmental benefits of a plant-based diet. In fact, 70 percent of all diseases, including one-third of all cancers, are related to diet, according to Vegetarian Times. They report that a vegetarian diet reduces the risk of chronic degenerative diseases like obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and certain types of cancer. In addition, you may avoid toxic chemicals that are found in pesticides in meat, fish and dairy products.

Many restaurants around the world have included a vegetarian (or vegan!) option on many menus, making it easy for those with a meatless lifestyle to enjoy going out with friends, trying new food and not feeling isolated from the world of meat eaters.

If you’re thinking about taking the plunge into vegetarianism, we’ve rounded up some helpful tips for you to consider that will make your transition that much easier.

1. Tell your friends and family, but not every person you see

Do tell your family and friends, just so they know that you’re in the process of changing your lifestyle. We’ve all heard the classic joke: “How can you tell if someone’s a vegan? Don’t worry, they’ll tell you.” Don’t be that person. No one wants to hear about your health awakening or your potential to be high-maintenance at social gatherings. Health is for taking care of yourself, not bragging to other people.

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