Sunday, August 31, 2008

Vegetarians get all the nutrients they need

Windsor Star - Thursday August 28, 2008

Re: No Meat? No Problem, Aug. 21.

I have been a vegetarian for 18 years and when people hear I don't eat animal products, they are often concerned about where I get enough calcium or protein.

Though times are changing, I still notice vegetarian diets are often criticized as extreme or unhealthy, when, in fact, a growing number of studies indicate animal products can increase the risk of obesity, stroke, heart disease, cancer and diabetes.

Plant-based diets protect against these conditions and diseases. Calcium can be absorbed from vegetables as well, if not better, than from milk products and without the harmful cholesterol and fat that come with dairy.

Although protein is certainly an essential nutrient, we do not need huge quantities as most people believe. It is easy for a well-balanced vegetarian diet to meet recommendations for protein. Nearly all vegetables, beans, grains, nuts, and seeds contain some, and often much, protein.

What your article didn't include was that many people turn to vegetarianism after becoming aware of the enormous suffering farm animals endure to produce meat, milk and eggs.

Often when people learn about the ways in which animals are raised for food, they are appalled by the cruelty these beings endure. Thanks again for such an educational article.


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