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This Is What Will Happen To Your Body When You Become A Vegetarian

This Is What Will Happen To Your Body When You Become A Vegetarian

Vegetarianism is defined as the practice of abstaining from the consumption of meat. Although I’m an occasional meat eater, I’ve straddled the vegetarian line on a few occasions. The first attempt was during a month-long challenge and out of convenience, I simply substituted all meat with eggs. There are some very noticeable changes you can expect when removing meat from your diet. These changes occur very quickly, usually within a day or two of your last carnivorous meal.

1. You’ll shed pounds

This is the first change and the most obvious. The third day of vegetarianism for me showed significant weight loss, visible in every area of my body. Although this is from personal experience, a recent publication in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics confirms that abstaining from meat could lead to natural weight loss. According to the research, the noted weight loss average is 7.5 pounds, possibly more based on a longer abstinence from meat products.

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2. You’ll have improved digestion

Your body is naturally detoxing and your digestive system doesn’t have to work so hard to process heavy meats. Meat can sometimes slow down your digestive tract if consumed with high-fiber plant foods or dairy products. Meats like pork take almost five hours to digest.

It’s worth noting that there isn’t any difference in the function and process of the digestive system, whether you consume meat or not. However, as stated above, ingesting both meat and plant-based foods can “alter your bacterial profile,” slowing your digestion. Positively, an increase in plant-based foods drastically reduces your risk against cardiovascular diseases.

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3. You’ll experience some bloating

Assuming that you’re now adopting a plant-based diet, rich with vegetables and fruits, prepare to experience some excessive gas, as healthy foods are usually foods that cause gas.

Tony Smithson, spokesman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetic, explains that the bacteria that live in our guts love the unique carbs found in legumes (called oligosaccharides) and when they consume them, the bacteria produce nitrogen gas, which is then released through the body. Another reason is because a lot of healthy foods, such as beans and grains, are high in fiber, which results in an increased production of gas and bloating. The benefits and rewards of consuming these highly nutritious foods will eventually improve your gastrointestinal function to reduce constipation.

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4. You’ll have different eating habits

Along with the cheaper grocery bill, your tastebuds might go through an adjustment period once you go vegetarian. This can be attributed to the reduction of protein and other vitamins directly available through meat, most considerably Zinc, which has many functions within the body. A study led out of the Institute of Health Bioscience at the University of Tokushima in Japan found that a Zinc deficiency results in a change and impairment in taste.

Lacking the natural vitamins your body needs is a notable shift for new vegetarians, therefore you have to replace necessary nutrients and dietary components like Zinc, Protein, B12 and Iron through other foods or supplements.

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5. Your body will take longer to recover from workouts

As mentioned, the reduction in protein, which is essential for building, maintaining, and repairing muscles, might impact your workouts. This is an easy fix, as there are numerous sources of protein available from plant foods, ranging from nuts and beans to powdered supplements and liquid formulas.

6. You’ll gain newfound respect for your body

Going vegetarian is an active effort and a conscious choice. It means verifying restaurant menus prior to a meal out and being aware of the food that you eat. Whether this change is a trial or a long-term decision, the discipline required to be a vegetarian will not only benefit you physically, but inevitably leak into other aspects of your life.

You will appreciate real, living foods and the newfound agility you have with a lighter body. A number of studies examining the benefits of being a vegetarian suggest that vegetarians, on average, are more physically active, drink less alcohol, and smoke less than the general population. They also have a lower prevalence for being overweight or obese.

Featured photo credit: Eat your vegetables, they’re good for you by David Saddler via flickr.com

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Last Updated on May 21, 2020

The Top Fad Diets That Are Actually Worth the Hype

The Top Fad Diets That Are Actually Worth the Hype

You have probably seen enough fad diets to last a lifetime. Many have become popular overnight and left just as quickly.

Some fad diets, though, have actually passed the test of time and are making some headway in the nutritional world.

Outlined below are four fad diets that are actually beneficial for your health and wellness. Read on to find out why you should consider adopting one (or more) of these healthy eating styles today.

An important concept you should keep in mind is to disregard the term “diet” as it is typically used. The word diet implies the idea of restriction and removal. Instead, think of the word diet in this context as a healthy eating lifestyle.

Let’s take a look at some of these healthy eating lifestyles that have been categorized, by no fault of their own, as fad diets.

1. The Paleo Diet

The paleo diet, or ancestral eating, is simply eating the way your paleolithic ancestors would have up to 10,000 years ago, or when the agriculture age began.

The advantage now is you don’t have to do this in a loin cloth, unless you want to… The focus of this diet is proteins, vegetables, some fruits, nuts and seeds and some healthy fats.

In the paleo diet, there aren’t any grains, starchy carbohydrates, sugars, or dairy.

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How Your Health Can Change With Paleo

The paleo diet is a good way to keep your blood sugar under control. It can also have a positive effect on type 2 diabetes, and can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.

With this healthy eating lifestyle, people have also achieved good weight loss results and boast improved energy levels. [1]

It’s not just what’s in the paleo diet that’s important, it’s what’s NOT in it. There aren’t any processed and manufactured foods, junk foods, artificial ingredients or chemical additives.

Paleo is a way of eating that gets you more in tune with your body and, therefore, can provide a lot of benefits.

2. Whole30

The Whole30 diet is relatively new and owes its popularity to social media and the #Whole30 Instagram hashtag that allowed people to share and broadcast their success with the diet.

With Whole30 you are taking 30 days and focusing on nutritious whole foods such as meats, nuts and seeds, seafood, eggs, vegetables, and fruits.

During the month you are eliminating:

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  • sugar
  • alcohol
  • legumes
  • grains
  • dairy
  • soy

Whole30 is similar to paleo, but it goes a bit further eliminating sweeteners such as honey or maple syrup.

At the end of the 30 days, you strategically reintroduce those eliminated foods back into your diet to discover any possibility of health consequences from them or even potential food allergies.

Finding Out How Food Impacts You

Most people eat the same things so often and may not realize that certain foods are causing health consequences, as they’ve become accustomed to feeling lethargic and run down.

With Whole30 you get the chance to see how these foods may have a negative impact on your body. You’ll also reset your taste buds, which may have become desensitized from processed and artificial “foods” and excess salt.

This diet will help you regain your love of food… in a healthy way!

3. The Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean diet has been at the top of the list as a very effective diet for some time now.

For people in countries like Italy or Greece, this has simply been a normal way of life–along with higher activity levels, sunlight exposure, proximity to water, and lower stress.

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With the Mediterranean diet, the focus is on heart-healthy foods. It looks like this:

  • Fruits & vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Legumes & nuts
  • Replacing butter with olive oil
  • Using herbs and spices instead of salt
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Moderate amounts of red wine

Help Your Heart & Overall Health With A Mediterranean Diet

Information from the Mayo Clinic shows that this diet reduces heart disease and lowers your “bad” LDL cholesterol. Studies involving 1.5 million people demonstrated that the Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular mortality, along with overall mortality. [2]

With all these benefits, this is definitely a “fad diet” that’s worth the hype.

4. The Alkaline Diet

The alkaline diet is about changing the foods you eat so that you put your body into an alkaline state and out of an acidic state. When your body is too far on the acidic side it can result in a condition called acidosis. This can lead to issues in your body such as upset stomach, breathing difficulties, headaches, weakness and, fatigue. In extreme cases, it can result in shock, coma, or death.

The goal is to get your body in a more alkaline state, which results in overall better health. The focus is on including alkaline boosting foods such as fruits, nuts, vegetables, and legumes. You’re also wanting to reduce acidic foods such as low quality beef and poultry, dairy, eggs, grains, and alcohol.

Pros & Cons With The Alkaline Diet

The benefits that come from this way of eating is that reduction in inferior quality foods, processed items and alcohol. You may feel improved energy levels, mental clarity and even better joint health.

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People also report weight loss but again this may come from the reduction in calories from junk and processed foods but this is not a bad thing at all.

One con with this diet is that the pH value of the food you eat might not have an impact on blood pH, as your body is able to balance this pretty well on a day-to-day basis.

Follow These Fads for Better Health and Wellness

There can be a danger in categorizing things as a fad diet because fads come and go. People are always looking for the next big thing or a quick fix.

The four examples above buck that status quo. These diets, though mainstream, actually can give you benefits and aren’t going to go away anytime soon because they work.

What makes these diets special is that they boast real whole foods and the eliminate processed and manufactured junk.

The Big Takeaway:

Whatever way you choose to eat, the focus needs to be on whole unprocessed foods. Look for the cleanest, local and most natural things you can find for the benefit of your overall health and wellness. Your body and mind will thank you.

Featured photo credit: Dan Gold via unsplash.com

Reference

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