Vegetarian diet is type of diet practiced by people who follow plant-based food eating habit. They consume mostly plant-based food. World Vegan Day is celebrated every 1st November world-wide.

Understanding of vegan

A vegetarian is an individual who eats grains, pulses, legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, fungi, algae, yeast and/or some other non-animal-based foods (e.g. salt) with, or without, dairy products, honey and/or eggs. Vegetarian can be classified into few groups which are (VegSoc,2016):

  • Lacto-ovo-vegetarians - Eat both dairy products and eggs (the most common type of vegetarian diet)
  • Lacto-vegetarians - Eat dairy products but no eggs
  • Ovo-vegetarian - Eats eggs but no dairy products
  • Vegan - No dairy products, eggs and animal-based foods
  • Being a vegetarian/vegan

    People can be vegetarian because of their belief and religion. In Malaysia, Chinese and Indian are the most common races who practice this vegetarianism. Even though the original meaning of vegetarian is forbidden to eat all meats but still any vegetarian has their own right to choose any type of vegetarian diet that suit them. Vegetarian diet is good as it low in fat and high in fibre however, vegetarians/vegan have to be caution with mineral and vitamin deficiency (Nestle,2018). People who followed vegetarian diet should know there are some pros and cons of being a vegetarian/vegan.

    Pros - Readily practice healthy eating. Since vegetarian diet mainly consist of fibre rich food thus, benefit from fibre like prevent constipation, smoothen digestive flow and reduce the risk bowel cancer might be obtained. It is also may aid in lowering the cholesterol, maintaining good weight and controlling blood pressure (Nestle,2018).

    Cons - They might have insufficient intake of some important nutrients that can be get from meat-based product. For total vegetarians or vegan, they might not get enough Vitamin B12, Calcium, Protein, Zinc, Iron and Riboflavin (Nestle,2018). Even they are inadequate on certain nutrients from meat, still they can have all in other food products

    Example of vegetarian recipes

    There is various delicious food for vegetarian and vegan. Vegetarian and vegan may have limited choices of food but their food is already naturally tasty and wonderful. Below some useful links for vegetarian and vegan might want to look upon.

    Note to remember:

    If you decided to go vegan, there are few things you need to know.

  • You have to have a strong determination ongoing in resisting all meat and meat-based products
  • You might need to take some supplements to add on nutrients
  • You probably face some difficulties in finding vegetarian restaurants as it is limited
  • Invitation to some party may be a little hard as sometimes they do not serve vegetarian foods

  • After all, being a vegetarian or vegan is not bad and compulsory. It is your choice. Be attentive to your body as if you just started vegetarian diet. Consult to nutritionist or dietitian to prevent nutrient deficiencies.