Vegetarianism, more properly known as the ethical principle of eating vegetarian, is an ancient dietary movement aiming to promote social justice, animal welfare, and environmental responsibility through a vegetarian diet. The word vegetarian comes from the Latin Veteris, which means “of the wild.” By contrast, carnivorous refers to animals that eat meat. A vegetarian is defined as someone who excludes animal meat from their diet. This definition would seem to imply that vegetarianism involves a rejection of animal products altogether, whereas veganism suggests that one believes that all animal products are harmful and should be avoided.
There are many definitions and distinctions among non-vegetarians on what a vegetarian diet actually consists of. Many vegetarians feel that vegetarianism consists of not consuming any products derived from animals, including eggs, milk, cheese, and other dairy products. On the other hand, other vegetarians argue that they do consume dairy products in small quantities, but do not abuse animal milk by drinking or cooking it. Vegans, on the other hand, do not use any products derived from animals, which excludes all animal milk products. These two types of vegetarians – the strict vegan and the lax vegan – follow entirely different vegetarianism from the strict vegan, which includes abstention from all animal products, while the lax vegan allows themselves to consume dairy products in moderation.
While the dietary principles of vegetarianism differ significantly, the methods to implement those principles are similar. Most vegetarians follow a strict vegan diet, avoiding all animal products as well as any food or dish prepared with meat, fish, or dairy. Many vegetarians go even further and completely eliminate any dishes containing animal ingredients from their diets. A few of the most common vegetarian dishes include rice, salads, pasta, baked goods (especially bread), soups, sauces made from milk or honey, cream-based sauces, eggs, and butter. Some vegans also avoid consuming certain cooked and processed foods such as chocolate and ice cream.
The semi-vegetarian, on the other hand, eat red meat in small quantities and consume poultry or fish. They may not include cheese in their diet. The diet of the semi-vegetarian varies from vegetarian to vegetarian and from week to week. Foods that are commonly included in a semi-vegetarian’s diet include beans (like black beans), lentils (green or red), Lima beans, potatoes, tofu, nuts, and other speciality foods.
omnivores eat either meat fish, or both meat and dairy products. They may eat other animal products occasionally but generally focus on eating red meat or poultry. Some omnivores, also called non-vegetarians, may occasionally consume dairy products like cheese, yoghurt, milk, or other dairy products. This type of vegetarian usually eats large amounts of protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and water. They also consume fewer fruits, vegetables, and other foods that are rich in fibre and complex carbohydrates.
The diet of the lacto-vegetarian, the semi-vegetarian, and the omnivore are three very different ways of eating a healthy diet. Each of these three dietary groups has many reasons to be vegetarian, yet they all have different reasons for doing so. While meat vegetarianism is the most popular of these three types of diets, it does not mean that the others do not exist. You can eat a vegetarian diet and still be a healthful person, provided you are careful to watch your diet. There are plenty of low-calorie, low-fat, high-fibre vegetarian diets that can be nutritious and delicious!