Types of vegetarianism, how they differ and what they eat

General information

Vegetarians are called all people who, for certain reasons, refused to consume meat. But actually vegetarianismis not a specific type of food, but the general name of a whole group of different branches. After all, some people refuse only meat, others do not eat any products of animal origin, and there are those who eat exclusively thermally unprocessed plant foods. About what each of the varieties of vegetarianism is called, and about their features, we will discuss this article.

Vegetarianism - what is it?

The term "vegetarianism" is derived from the English word vegetable (vegetables, plant). This word began to be widely used in Great Britain in the mid-nineteenth century, when a vegetarian society began to operate in this country.

The British Vegetarian Community, which is still active, defines the vegetarian as "a person who does not eat fish, poultry and animal meat." But, in fact, not everything is so simple, because the types of vegetarianism are different, as well as those reasons that prompt a person to change their habits.

The reasons why people refuse to consume animal food can be very different: moral, ethical, economic, environmental, medical, religious. And, depending on his own worldview, state of health and preferences, a person chooses a certain type of diet and adheres to it. In addition, many adherents of different types of vegetarianism refuse not only certain foods, but also other products, the manufacture of which affects animals. These are fur, leather, as well as cosmetics tested on animals, etc.

Statistics show that currently in the world the number of those who refused animal food is constantly increasing. Doctors attribute this primarily to what people think vegetarian diet more healthy.


The table below describes the varieties of vegetarianism

Type nameWhat can I eat?
Lacto-vegetarianismPlant Food, Dairy Products
Ovo vegetarianismVegetable food, eggs
Lacto-ovo-vegetarianismPlant foods, dairy products, eggs
Raw food dietThermally Untreated Plant Food
VeganismPlant food
MonosyroshenieVegetable food that does not mix in one go
FruitorianismFruits of plants, greens
PescarianismPlant foods, dairy products, eggs, fish, shellfish, crabs
PolotarianismPlant foods, dairy products, eggs, fish, shellfish, crabs, poultry
FlexitarianismPlant foods, dairy products, eggs, fish, shellfish, crabs, sometimes meat

All these types of food vary depending on the foods that are in the diet.


This type of diet is followed by a very large number of those who are ranked among vegetarians. Lacto-vegetarianism - This is a type of nutrition in which all animal food except milk is excluded from the diet. Accordingly, dairy products are the main source of protein for those who practice such nutrition.

What can I eat with such a diet? Any plant food, as well as all dishes and products containing milk - sour-milk products, cheese, cottage cheese, etc. True, those products that use gelatin and abomasum of animal origin are excluded from the diet.

Lacto-vegetarianism is most popular among those who profess Buddhism and Hinduism, in which the principles of non-violence are preached. However, the lacto-vegetarian is not always the one who professes these religions. Many people practice this diet in order to improve their health. With such a diet, indicators quickly decline cholesterol in blood. At the same time, the body receives a sufficient amount of calcium, vitamin D, necessary amino acids.

Reviews indicate that very often lacto-vegetarianism is an intermediate step on the path to veganism. As a rule, it is much easier for a person to switch to such a diet and only after a while to leave exclusively vegetable food in the diet.

Ovo vegetarianism

Sheep VegetariansIn addition to plant foods, eggs also consume. Their philosophy is such that, unlike lacto-vegetarians, they do not consider eggs to be the product of killing animals. Vegetarians argue this with the fact that people consume unfertilized eggs, that is, they do not harm animals. In addition, adherents of such a diet are convinced that animal protein is necessary for the body.


This type of vegetarianism involves the consumption of not only plant foods, but also eggs and milk. It is believed that among vegetarians in the world the most adherents of just such a variety of it. Ovolakte VegetarianismIt’s easy to practice, because it’s a rather non-strict food system. Switching from a regular diet to it is not difficult, as recipes for lacto-ovo-vegetarianism are quite diverse. The menu in this case turns out to be balanced, because animal proteins, essential amino acids, and a number of other components that are important for health enter the body. That is why nutritionists are more supportive of such nutrition than veganism.

But in this case, it is very important to combine products correctly, consume a variety of foods every day and try to balance the menu as much as possible.

Another advantage of such a food system is the fact that its adherents can easily provide themselves with good nutrition by visiting cafes and restaurants, where you can find enough suitable dishes on the menu. Also, many products can be purchased in retail chains and markets.

However, this type of vegetarianism often causes some disapproval among vegans who believe that both eggs and milk are products of animal exploitation.


Vegan eat a fairly strict scheme, refusing any food that has animal origin. Very often, "uninitiated" people do not fully understand how a vegan differs from a vegetarian. The difference between these terms is that vegetarians are a more general concept, and their diet can be quite diverse. As for vegans, they have certain nutritional rules. That is, the main differences are that veganismis a subspecies of vegetarianism. Many people perceive veganism as a more stringent form of vegetarianism. In essence, vegetarians and vegans are two different concepts, and the question of how their essence differs is, by and large, incorrect.

Vegan feed exclusively on plant foods, and sometimes refuse bee products. As a rule, people practice such food for ethical reasons, completely excluding those products and things, the production of which, in their opinion, animals suffer.

A vegan diet is good for your health. Vegans have cleaner and healthier skin, their digestion is better, since the diet is always present cellulose. With a vegetable diet, the load on the internal organs and excretory system is reduced, and the well-being of the person as a whole improves. The nervous system of vegans due to such nutrition is stronger, which allows them to demonstrate pronounced resistance to stress.

Nevertheless, no matter how hard the vegans try to eat as balanced and varied as possible, they still lack the components that are important for the body, which contain exclusively animal products.

When switching to this food system, people use two methods: either do it abruptly, or they practice a gradual transition, first adhering to ovo-lacto-vegetarianism or other, less strict principles.


Another kind of vegetarianism called pescarianism. This is a food system and lifestyle in which people do not consume the meat of warm-blooded creatures. With such a diet, the consumption of fish, shellfish, and crabs is allowed. As for eggs and milk, these products can be both prohibited and permitted.

This trend is also called young vegetarianism. Its adherents believe that the meat of warm-blooded animals can negatively affect the body, as it contains a lot of saturated fats. As for fish and seafood, they contain a lot of fatty acids Omega 3 and other substances that are very important for the body. Therefore, every pescetarian believes that such a menu is the most healthy and optimal.

In terms of ethics, Pescetarians believe that eating warm-blooded animals is close to cannibalism. In addition, they, like other vegetarians, associate their principles with a reluctance to make warm-blooded animals suffer.

Pescetarians get a certain amount of animal protein, but still the basis of their diet is plant foods.


This trend is the most "democratic" in terms of food consumption. After all polotarianism- This is a nutrition system in which people exclude red meat from mammals from the diet, but their menu also includes poultry, fish, eggs, milk. In some sources, this type of food is defined as young vegetarianism. From a medical point of view, this type of nutrition is justified by the fact that red meat contains a lot of saturated fats that harm the body. There are even a number of studies by scientists confirming that the consumption of red meat is harmful to the body.

But, in addition to medical reasons, people practicing such food are guided by ethical as well as religious reasons. They suggest that mammals have a central nervous system that argues that their killing is not humane.

Raw food diet

This type of food is also called live nutrition. At raw food dietall animal products are excluded from the diet, and plant foods are not thermally processed. With this nutrition, drying of fruits and vegetables is allowed at a temperature not exceeding 40 degrees. A higher temperature is not allowed, as many trace elements die, and such food can no longer be considered live. Raw foodists eat nuts, vegetables, fruits, sprouted grains, smoothies, cereals (cereals pour warm water).

This type of nutrition is also used for treatment and prevention. Raw foodists themselves believe that such nutrition is the most rational for the body. About raw food there is a lot of diverse literature from authors who themselves are raw food eaters. For example, the famous writer Ari Yasan assures that a raw food diet is a direct path to health and longevity.


Another current called fructorianism, provides for the consumption of all fruits of plants and greens. Fructorians most often consume nuts and seeds in green. Adherents of this trend believe that human nature provides for the consumption of just fruits. But not everyone can practice such nutrition. In addition, even though the Fructorians get a lot of vitamins with food, in their bodies there is a deficiency of a number of other very important substances.


This type of raw food diet is different in that the products do not mix with each other. For example, a man eats apples for breakfast, bananas for lunch, and plums for dinner. If harm and benefit are assessed modosroedeniya, then as a positive high digestibility of products is noted. Mono-eaters claim that little energy is spent on digesting food, while they have high immunity, and they rarely get sick. However, despite the fact that reviews of the mono-diet of those who practice it indicate excellent health, doctors say the opposite. In their opinion, such nutrition is not balanced, and a person receives an insufficient amount of the elements he needs. Nutritionists note that this is such a diet in which the body is often severely lacking in minerals and other substances contained in animal food.


Flexitarianism- It is mainly a vegetable diet, in which the consumption of meat is allowed. Every flexarian wants to eat as little meat as possible. However, it is not completely excluded from the diet. Vegans and other vegetarian groups often criticize this type of food, arguing that "semi-vegetarianism" is unacceptable.


Thus, all types of vegetarianism have their own characteristics, as well as the pros and cons. If a person sets himself the goal of switching to a particular type of vegetarianism, he needs to learn about it as much as possible. At the same time, it is important to determine for yourself not only the reasons that prompt such changes, but also to analyze how much a person is ready for them. Before moving on to any type of vegetarian diet, it is necessary to assess the state of health and willingness to seriously follow the principles of a particular diet.

Watch the video: Top 10 Protein Sources, Healthy Vegetarian & Meat Foods, Weight Loss Nutrition Tips. Health Coach (February 2020).

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