How Healthy Is A Vegetarian Diet, And What Should I Know If I'm Starting A Vegetarian Diet?

Question: How healthy is a vegetarian diet, and what should I know if I'm starting a vegetarian diet?

Answer: In general, a vegetarian diet is a little bit healthier than an omnivore diet. You don't need meat to have good health and by excluding it, it doesn't necessarily counteract good health, in fact it can improve it.

Now, having said that, there are unhealthy vegetarian diets also. Sour cream and other high-fat dairy products, French fries, potato chips all fit on a vegetarian diet, but aren't necessarily health supporting.

You don't have to choose extremely carefully, the bottom line is: Eat a variety of foods from all the different food groups, except for the meat group, and you will have good health.

Now, if you are going to exclude animal products totally, no meat, no dairy products and no animal products at all, you do need a vitamin B-12 supplement. And it's even more important to eat a variety of foods that do contain some protein, but you can get all the protein you need from beans, grains and combinations of vegetable foods.

If you enjoy the taste of a vegetarian diet, eat a variety of foods, go for it. It'll only improve your health.