I became a vegetarian about three years ago. I am part of a growing trend toward the diet. But do the health benefits outweigh the risks? My doctor used to be a vegetarian herself a while ago. People who choose properly, who plan, can see lower cholesterol, weight loss and maintain the energy they had even when they were eating meat. The key phrase: people who plan. Practicing a vegetarian diet isn’t something to do without the proper and deserved research. If you’re not careful, you could deprive your body of key nutrients it needs to function properly, and this can be dangerous instead of healthy.
It would be like a car trying to run without any gas. Or trying to run without an oil change. If you eliminate foods that cause you to have a B12 deficiency, you could have memory problems or problems with your nervous system. This and other alerts go unnoticed by very new vegetarians.
If you do decide to go the vegetarian route, you won’t be eating red meat, which is a good source of iron. A good substitute are dark green, leafy vegetables like broccoli. If you don’t have enough iron in your diet, you may feel exhausted during the day.
Beans are one of my staples. They’re really good because they’re high in fiber and protein, and they’re inexpensive, too. They’re also shelf stable for a really long time. But whatever your diet is, it’s important to do your research. If you’re not sure you’re getting everything you need, throw in a multi-vitamin to make sure you fill up your body with the right fuel.