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Should You Be a Flexitarian?

By Sara Butler

Did you know that vegetarians have lower rates of disease such as diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and heart disease? It’s true! Choosing to forego meat has many benefits to your health, but it turns out you don’t have to go totally meatless to reap the benefits. If you can be flexible with your diet and practice a flexitarian lifestyle, then a sometimes vegetarian diet may be the right things for you. Here are some tips to help you get started.

The Benefits

Incorporating some vegetarian principles into your diet might be a good way to get healthy. That’s because eating less meat means you eat more vegetables, fruits, grains, and other healthy sources of protein, such as beans. You also end up eating less saturated fat as well as more fiber, minerals, and vitamins. People who eat less meat also tend to be leaner than those who do; they’re also less likely to suffer from heart problems as well as certain types of cancer, such as colorectal cancer.

Another great benefit to eating less meat is how great it is for your bank account. Meat is expensive in comparison to other foods. So, you can put the money you save toward a gym membership or maybe some new cross trainers you’ve had your eye on.

A Few Tips

To cut some meat out of your diet and begin to embrace the flexitarian lifestyle, you should:

  • Start with meatless Mondays – Choose just one day of the week to eliminate meat to dip your toe into flexitarianism.
  • Make main courses meatless – You can make the main dishes you serve meatless with meat as a side. Think vegetarian lasagna with a side salad topped with chicken.
  • Experiment with substitutes – There are a ton of meat substitutes on the market, so branch out and try a few. Many are made from soy, which is good for you.
  • Eat vegetables first – Vegetables are full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, so eat those first and then move onto the protein portion of your meal.
  • Eat vegetarian when out – When you go out to eat with friends and family, consider ordering a vegetarian option from the menu.
  • Don’t get too cheesy – Cheese is the downfall of many vegetarians. Cheese is good for you in moderation, much like meat. It’s full of the saturated fat that you’re trying to avoid with meat, so make sure to eat it in moderation.

When it comes to your diet, flexibility is the key to better health!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Woodland Hills, Calif.

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