5 Tips For Going Meat-Free

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5 Tips to eat meat free and stay healthy

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Beef, pork, poultry and other meats are an important part of a balanced diet. Meat is rich in protein, in addition to providing high levels of iron and vitamin B-12. 

5 tips that will help you to get the vitamins without eating meat.


1. Protein: Choose Whole Foods

Protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Hair and nails are mostly made of protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues. You also use protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals.

Where do vegetarians get their protein?

  • Lentils, 18 grams of protein per cup
  • Chickpeas, 12 grams/cup
  • Black beans, 15 grams per cup
  • Nuts, varied
  • Tofu, 11 grams per 4 ounces
  • Quinoa, 9 grams per cup
  • Other legumes, varied
  • Grains, varied

2. Zinc: Choose Nuts, Seeds, and Grains


As well as protein and fibre, nuts are full of similar vitamins and minerals to those in meat and fish, especially iron, zinc, magnesium and selenium. They're also high in calories though, so eat mindfully.


3. B vitamins: Almost All Plant-Based Foods


Vitamin B-12 is essential for your metabolism and it also helps make new red blood cells. Meat, chicken, milk, yogurt and cheese are some of the richest sources of vitamin B-12.
If you eat eggs, you'll get about .6 micrograms of B-12 from one large egg, but you have to consume the entire egg, since most of the vitamin is in the yolk. Baked goods are made with flour that is usually enriched with B-12 and other nutrients. A 2 1/2-ounce slice of freshly made cornbread has nearly 1 microgram of B-12, or about 40 percent of your daily requirement. Even a 1-ounce wedge of sponge cake, 2-ounce piece of banana bread or slice of white bread each have almost .1 micrograms of vitamin B-12. Don't rely solely on baked goods to meet your vitamin B-12 intake, since these foods tend to be high in fat and calories.


4. SOYA GOOD FOR YOU


More than just a source of protein, tofu or soya bean curd gives vegetarians and vegans a good hit of zinc, iron and calcium which are often lacking in meat-free diets.
It also provides some omega-3 fats and can help to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. It's versatile, too, use firm tofu in stir-fries, broths, stews and salads and silken tofu to make creamy dairy-free sauces and dips


5. OMEGA-3


Omega 3 fatty acids play a role in every cell in the body. Omega 3 makes up cell membranes, keeps the nervous system functioning, keeps cholesterol levels in check, and staves off inflammation. There are so many health benefits associated with Omega 3 that it is no surprise how much hype the nutrient is now getting.

Where do vegetarians get OMEGA-3?

Flax Seeds


Not surprisingly, flax tops our list as the best vegetarian source of Omega 3. One ounce of flax seeds packs in 6388mg of Omega 3 (nearly 6 times the RDA). You get 1655mg of Omega 6 in the process, which helps keep your Omega 3 to Omega 6 raios in check. To get an even bigger boost, you can take a tablespoon of flax oil which delivers 7196mg of Omega 3.


Chia Seeds


Chia seeds have only recently gotten mainstream attention (at least beyond use on ceramic “pets”) – and it is long overdue! A single ounce of chia seeds packs in 4915mg of Omega 3 but just 1620mg of Omega 6. They are also loaded with calcium (1oz=18% RDA), fiber, and manganese.


Hemp Seeds


Hemp seeds have a great Omega 3 to Omega 6 ratio. One ounce of the seeds will provide 1100 Omega 3 and 2700 Omega 6.



Winter squash


Winter squash is a surprisingly good source of Omega 3, with 338mg per cup cooked – and you’ll only get 203mg of Omega 6.



Cabbage Family


Vegetables in the cabbage family have a surprising amount of Omega 3. Cauliflower is the most notable with 208mg Omega 3 and just 62mg of Omega 6 per cup, cooked. Broccoli and Brussels sprouts are also good choices


Berries


Berries are not only good sources of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, but they also are also a good vegetarian source of Omega 3. Blueberries top the list with 174mg of Omega 3 per 1 cup serving while simultaneously only delivering 259mg of Omega 6.

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