Considering a vegetarian diet but don’t know where to start? Dietitian April Hamilton gives you the valuable transition tips she shares with her friends and clients.
Here are just a few things I’ve learned as a vegetarian: 1. Tofu has gotten an unfair bad rap. So have leafy greens. Actually, a lot of healthy foods are much better than the cynics would lead you to believe. Never tried kumquats or quinoa? Well, what are you waiting for?
What’s the safest way to shed excess pounds, avoid high cholesterol and heart disease, and even cut your risk for certain types of cancer? “With a vegetarian diet,” says author Neal Barnard, M.D. “It’s the most powerful prescription for health I can suggest.”
Although the average vegetarian is slimmer and healthier than the average meat-eater, says Dr. Barnard, there is still a good deal of skepticism that an entirely vegetarian diet can provide complete nutrition. After all, in 1928 presidential candidate Herbert Hoover rallied supporters by promising “a chicken in every pot.” The dream realized, Americans are more out of shape than ever, with obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other diet-driven illnesses claiming many thousands of lives each year. So what if we traded those chickens for spaghetti marinara, veggie burgers, lentil soup, or even a bean burrito? Would we turn the tide on many chronic illnesses? Physicians and dietitians say yes.
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