Diet is a combination of food intake by a human being to get proper nutrition. Dietary habits play important role in life and health. Inadequate, undisciplined diet leads to an unhealthy life but the good and healthy diet would lead to a wealthy and long life.
Dietary habits in India or the world are almost different due to their living conditions, population, religion and their socio-economic conditions. Food is available in two forms or can be parted into two categories i.e. Vegetarian and Non-Vegetarian, which has its effects on nutritional status.
None of us is pure vegetarian. Protein intake is significantly higher in non–vegetarians in comparison to vegetarians. A single food cannot provide complete nutrients to the body.
There is a variety of diet to meet all the needs of different ages and provide sufficient nutrients to keep the body fit. After air and water, food is the basic need of human being to survive on earth and to lead a long life.
Vegetarian Diet- A Diet for Development of Healthy Body
Vegetarian Diet can be divided into three part i.e. total vegetarian, lactovegetarian and Lacto-ovo vegetarian. Total or pure vegetarian diet includes vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, and legumes. The lacto vegetarian diet contains dairy products like milk, butter, cheese etc., and plant food.
Apart from the lactovegetarian food, lacto-ovo vegetarian food includes egg. A vegetarian diet is full of vitamins, fiber, unsaturated fat, folic acid, magnesium etc., such diet protects us from diabetes, heart diseases, stabilize blood pressure, saves us from many types of cancer, lower cholesterol, keep thin.
A vegetarian diet is full of nutrients required for the growth and development of healthy body and mind and to fulfill this requirement variety of food is required which is a good source of vitamins, iron, iodine, zinc, protein etc.
Non-Vegetarian Diet- A Diet to Maintain Body Stamina
Food of animal origin, including meat, fowl, eggs and fish are included in the non-vegetarian diet. By eating non-veg food we get lots of health benefits because this type of food is rich in vitamin B complex and protein. Apart from this we also get Omega 3 Fatty from fishes.
Non-veg food strengthens muscles and helps them grow faster, it increases the mass of the body. Non-veg help to maintain body stamina and hemoglobin. It also increases antibodies production in our body.
Rewards of Vegetarian Diet
a vegetarian diet is the most preferred diet in India and especially in the age group of 50 and above. Most of the Doctor’s recommend vegetarian food during illness or other chronic diseases.
Eating habits lead a significant role in the life and character of a human being; it restricts or enhances the longevity of human beings. Being low-fat food it minimizes the risk of coronary artery and cardiovascular problems in comparison to non-vegetarians.
- Vegetarian food helps in lowering the body weight and lower down the fear of being obese and not be conscious about their health and body.
- It helps to maintain cholesterol level which lowers the risk of heart diseases.
- Vegetarian food controls and prevents diabetes.
- It prevents us from several types of cancer.
- Vegetarian food is a rich source of calcium, minerals, proteins, zinc, vitamin D, iron, vitamin 12, and iodine and omega-3 fatty acids.
- This diet controls depression, hypertension, anxiety, and allergies.
- Due to deficiency of Calcium teeth and bones become weak and spongy. We get calcium from milk products and vegetable such as dark green vegetables, turnip, tofu, broccoli etc. which are rich sources of calcium.
- It reduces the risk of food poisoning.
- Vitamin K lowers the excessive loss of blood. Green leafy vegetables, wheat bran, and cheese are rich sources of vitamin K.
- We need sodium and potassium for the proper functioning of nerves and muscles and to maintain the balance of water in our body. Both of them are found in salt, cereals, pulses, and fruits.
- Vegetarian food is easily available at a much lower price in comparison to meat.
Drawbacks of Vegetarian Diet
Only a balanced diet could make a person strong and healthy. Vegetarian food is good for health but to live a healthy and sporty life we need meat, fish etc. to strengthen muscles and bones because choices are limited in the vegetarian diet.
- We do not get an adequate amount of protein by taking vegetarian diet, one has to explore new combinations to get sufficient amount of protein, which is a long process.
- Vegetarian diets are lower in nutrients such as vitamin B-12, iron, calcium, omega-3 fatty acids.
- It can result in low blood pressure.
- Senior people may face caloric deficiencies.
- Due to economic social and environmental conditions, sometimes it is difficult to get vegetarian food available at all places. One can never be sure of being provided meat-free diet.
Rewards of Non-Vegetarian Diet
Non-vegetarian products are globally available. They help in re-building and repairing body tissues and increase production of antibodies and red blood cells to get protection from various infections. They are rich in proteins, phosphorus, vitamins etc.
- It helps in maintaining strong teeth, healthy skin, and good vision and promotes brain development.
- For normal functioning of body system vitamins are necessary and the non-vegetarian food is a rich source of vitamins.
- For the development of bones and muscles and other body parts in growing age kids, healthy fat and proteins are required and meat is a rich source of same.
- Meat is a rich source of selenium and zinc which helps in increasing metabolism and also helps in breaking down of fat.
Drawbacks of non-vegetarian diet.
- This type of food is the root cause of high blood pressure, heart diseases, high cholesterol, constipation, and obesity.
- It disturbs concentration level, increases lust. Anger, stress, and fear transfers to our body because animals we eat lives in an environment of fear and stress.
- The drugs and hormones which are given to these animals to promote their growth are transmitted to our body which may cause many mental disorders.
- Non-veg food decreases resistance power of the body.
- This type of food weakens our bones gradually because after eating non-veg food high alkaline salts get excreted through urine and leads to the deficiency of salt in the blood.
- Fat consumed from meat increases cholesterol and affect the arteries and veins, it often blocks the same and affects the immune system.
- The non-vegetarian food caused stomach infestation.
- The atmosphere is affected by the meat industry. Meat wastes are thrown in open area and rivers, which causes sickness, pollution and also lowers quality of water.
- Meat products are expensive and poor people cannot afford the same.
Which Diet is Best for the Body?
Non-vegetarian and vegetarian diets have their advantages and disadvantages. The above comparative study suggests that balanced diet is required for leading a healthy life.
As a human, we are in habit of stubbornness and comfort. We want each and everything according to our wish and in our control. We are of the view that whatever I am doing is correct in all manners and we have thousands of reason for the same.
We use to mold the things and situations in accordance with our choice. Death is certain but no one would like to die in a road accident. Our eating habits play an important role in our lives; people get sick due to their unwanted bad habit of eating junk and unhealthy food. Excess, over-eating and inadequate diet cause diseases.
Both food products available in the market are processed food, which is not good for health; these products are rich in salt. People love to have refined cereals, fried food, fatty meat and baked goods and some are very harmful to both vegetarians and non-vegetarians.
These unhealthy eating habits promote diabetes, strokes, obesity, blockage of arteries etc. One should avoid fried and fast food for a better health and should consume the balanced diet and exercise regularly, whether a vegetarian or non-vegetarian they should consume fresh and unprocessed food.