Food is Fuel, not Therapy
Food is fuel and your body is a high tech machine.
There is a saying that if your food is wrong, medicine is of no use. But if your food is right, medicine is of no need. According to Ayurveda, food that increases the quality, life span, health, happiness in one's life should be consumed. The vegetarian diet is one of the diets which is recommended for better health. The vegetarian diet is also called as sattvic diet.
Food should be considered as fuel as our body is a machine or a high-end car. If the fuel is not right or not given in the right amount, this high-end car will be difficult to maintain. Almost all the diseases in our body start with indigestion. People who practise or follows yoga give huge importance to a vegetarian diet.
A vegetarian diet is easy on our body whereas any sort of meat is difficult to digest. Although it is completely not true. We need protein as it is considered the building block of our body. Some research suggests that we need animal protein to build our muscles as our ancestors were meat-eaters. But much research has also proved that protein from plants is as good as meat.
Lentils, beans, nuts, grains and dairy products for example milk, cheese, yoghurt have the same to more protein than any other meat-based product. Other than protein, our body needs micronutrients for example vitamins and minerals too. The combination of protein, water, vitamins and minerals can be achieved if we start taking the vegetarian diet on regular basis.
In recent days many people are opting for a vegetarian diet due to various reasons. Some are taking for spiritual reasons as they feel connected to God and some are becoming more health-conscious. There is a very big confusion among people between vegetarian diet and vegan diet. To some people, it may sound the same but they are two different diets. You can say that the vegan diet comes under the vegetarian diet.
Before stating the benefits of a Vegetarian diet, first, we need to know what does the term means in a layman's language. Any diet which excludes meat and fish can be considered a Vegetarian diet. And vegan diet is an only plant-based diet. It does not include anything which comes from animals for example dairy products. A person who is practising a vegan diet will not consume any dairy product like milk, yoghurt, cheese, butter. Their only source of food will be plant-based.
Health Benefits of Vegetarian Diet
- Heart Health
It helps to keep cardiovascular diseases at bay as vegetarian food consists of high dietary fibre and low to no saturated fats. It contains unsaturated fats which are good for your heart. It helps in maintaining your good cholesterol profile.
- Hyper Tension
Research has proved that people who consume meat, poultry and fish suffer from hypertension. Whereas people who follow a vegetarian diet do not have hypertension. Generally, meat-based food is high in sodium which generally elevates blood pressure levels. A vegetarian diet contains water which helps in regulating our blood pressure.
- Prevents Cancer
Research has proved that people who consume meat every day are 3 to 4 times more prone to cancer than people who are vegetarians. The Nation Cancer Institute concluded that including red meat in your diet every day is associated with cancer. It also suggested that a person who includes vegetables along with meat in their meal are 10%-20% less prone to cancer. People who follow a vegetarian diet or vegan diet are least prone to cancer. But it is not written anywhere that you will not have cancer at all if you consume a vegetarian diet. It reduces the chances of getting cancer.
- Weight Loss
Along with being rich in dietary fibres, it is also rich in antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and water. It will keep you full and cut on your fatty cells. However, if portions are not kept in check, it can cause weight gain. It also slows down your ageing process as vegetables and fruits are loaded with antioxidants, leaving you more energetic and lively.
- Prevents Diabetes
Research has proven that vegetarian people have a 30% low risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is related to obesity. The fatty cells and tissue do not let the natural insulin that the body produces release properly. Eventually leading to diabetes. Vegetarian diets are low in saturated fats which helps in maintaining the body’s weight.
- Improves Bone Quality
Excessive intake of protein can render the absorption of calcium which is required for bone density. The Source of calcium that we get from the milk makes your blood acidic. To maintain that, the body takes calcium from the bone thus decreasing the density of the bone. Which leads to osteoporosis. Instead, we should depend on plant-based food for example spinach, broccoli, cauliflower or any other leafy vegetables which are better sources of calcium.
These are the few benefits of following a vegetarian diet. It is one’s personal choice whether he wants to be a vegetarian or meat-eater. But to lead a better and healthy life, you should follow a vegetarian diet. Apart from health benefits, it is very easy to maintain as it is pocket friendly.
So, go vegetarian and save your planet, your money and most importantly, yourself. Your body is a machine, and it is easy to maintain if you know the type of fuel you are putting into it.
*(This article is curated with the reference of books named “A Taste of Well Being” by Isha Foundation and “The Hare Krishna Book of Vegetarian Cooking” by Adiraja Dasa.)
Lastly, if you like my post, please leave a comment below and follow me for more such posts. Till then happy writing.