What is a vegetarianThe Vegetarian Society defines a vegetarian as: "Someone who lives on a diet ofgrains, pulses, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruits with, or without, the use of dairy products and eggs. Avegetarian does not eat any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish* or by-products of slaughter.“When the vegetarian society say shellfish what they mean is a sea animal that is covered with a shelf forexample crustaceans and most molluscs.There are a number of different types of vegetarian :Pescatarian :The word pescatarian is occasionally used todescribe someone who completely refrains fromeating all meats and animal flesh except fromfish. This word is not so commonly used anymorehowever, a lot more people are adopting thistype of diet. Some for health reasons and othersuse it as a stepping stone to becoming a fullvegetarian.Flexitarian :Flexitarian is a word coined by the vegetariansociety to describe those who are not actualvegetarians but still enjoy vegetarian diets. Thereare a large number of people who prefer to eat avegetarian diet whilst occasionally still eatingmeat. Some vegetarians disagree with thislifestyle whilst others think it is a step in the rightdirection.Lacto – ovo – Vegetarian :This is the most common type of vegetarianism, ifyou were to think about what a vegetarian is, thisterm would back that up. These are people whoeat no meat or shellfish but will consume eggsand dairy products . A slight variation of this isthe Lacto Vegetarian who will not eat eggs butwill consume dairy products.Vegan :Vegans will refuse to eat any sort of meathowever they differ from vegetarians in the factthat they will also not consume eggs, dairyproducts or any processed foods that maycontain animal derived ingredients such asgelatin. Many vegans also take a strong standingon making sure they do not have products thatare made with animal products, despite themhaving no animal in the final product, forexample sugar and some wines. There are someitems of food that cause debate in the vegansociety, a commonly debated food item ishoney.Raw Vegan :A raw vegans diet consists of the same things asa regular vegan diet, however they will not eatany unprocessed vegan foods that have beenheated above 115 degrees Fahrenheit. ‘’Rawfoodists ‘’as they are known believe that if foodis cooked above that temperature that it beginsto lose most of its nutritional values. They alsobelieve that it makes the food harmful to hebody. There are a lot of small variations of theraw Vegan diet such as :- Fruitarianismjuicearianism, and sproutarianismMacrobiotic :The macrobiotic diet is revered by somefor its healthy healing qualities. Themacrobiotic diet creates an idealcombination of a few of the other sectionsof vegetarianism. They eat vegan foodssuch as whole rains, fruits and vegetableswhilst still being allowed to consume fish.Sugar and other refined oils are avoided.What makes this diet incredibly unique isits emphasis on the fact you are allowed toconsume Asian vegetables, such asdaikon, and sea vegetables, such asseaweed.Openingquote reference : http://www.vegsoc.org/page.aspx?pid=698
Table 2 shows that 67% of individuals (out of 110) start the vegetarian diet dueto ethical beliefs and other specific reasons. This could be to do with severalcontroversial subjects, one being the unethical mistreatment of animals insociety “The act of unnecessary killing of sentient beings and opposition tocertain agricultural practices surrounding the production of meat.”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethics_of_eating_meat. Or some religions worshipupon animals and find it morally wrong to eat them, an example being that inreligions such as Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism, cattle are considered sacred.Also in states like India, the slaughter of cattle is forbidden and their meat maybe taboo.http://www.scienceofeds.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Timko-et-al-2012-Table-1-Adapted1.pngTable 2 also shows that 17% of individuals (out of 110) start the vegetarian dietfor health reasons. Studies taken place in the year 2012(http://www.weightlossresources.co.uk/diet/vegetarian.htm) have shown that avegetarian that also follows a well-balanced, low-fat, high-fibre diet – often havelower incidence of coronary artery disease, hypertension, obesity and someforms of cancer. Overall a vegetarian diet does tend to be significantly lower infat than the traditional diet.Finally, table 2 shows 8% (out of 110) begin the vegetarian diet forenvironmental reasons. A term often used when discussing the vegetarian dietwith environmental causes is “sustainable agriculture”. This is the idea thatfarming should be self-sustaining, as the vegetation and vegan lifestyles requiresignificantly less water and also prevent pollution. It is also believed thatchoosing the vegetarian lifestyle can all prevent other environmental concernssuch as global warming and deforestation.Table 1 shows that out of 111 samples the medium age is 27 years old. Research conductedas University of Virginia reported in the academic journal Neurobiology Of Aged, scientistsfound that out mental abilities start of deteriorate from the age of 27 after the reaching thepeek at 22. This was proclaimed after studying 2,000 men and women aged 18-60 overseven years, individuals were of good health and well educated.(http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1162052/Old-age-begins-27--scientists-claim-new-research.html ) In today’s society in is traditional that an individual begins tothink more cautiously about their health and diet at the age of 27. They may also alreadyhave or be expecting children which can also create a dramatic impact of how a peoplecontrols their eating habits and regular diet. This can be a logical reason for turning to thevegetarian/vegan lifestyle, to maintain the body’s health as well as children and otherfamily member etc. A lot see it a more of a lifestyle choice rather than a forceful nature.Table 1 also shows that 86% (out of 111) vegetarians are females, meaning the remaining 14%are males. In both men and women, traditionally the primary reason for becoming avegetarian is for health benefits, in society health concerns play a big role when converting tovegetarianism, it is commonly shown that there are currently more female than malevegetarians. Also in statistics according to Men’s Health magazine, women choose to visitthere local GP an average of 6.2 times per year where as men only 4.5 times a year. Theseresults show that women take a more proactive approach to their health rather than men.
An outline of various reasons that people become a vegetarianHealth reasons• Excessive eating of meat along un-balanced, high-fat and salt diet can be technically linked to causes of cancer and circulatory systems.• Meat is significantly high in cholesterol and too much can be bad for the health, especially in the US where portions are larger and meat is eaten in greaterquantities.• The majority of cases of food poisoning are consumed from animal products. Recently in the last century factory farms, slaughterhouses and meat packingplants have become exceptionally unhygienic and contaminated places.• Choosing the vegetarian lifestyle often results in a reduction in the risk of gaining weight and developing cancers, it also promotes a longer life spam. TheOrnish diet (a low fat vegetarian lifestyle) is proven to reverse the effects of heart disease. Also the thought of the time taken for meat to be externallydigested can push people to turning vegetarian.For environmental reasons• The production of meat produce can destroy endangered rain forest environments, as the process produces excessive amounts of methane (a greenhousegas) and water pollution in the form of sewage solution.• Breeding and raising livestock can produce significantly more greenhouse gases than the majority of motor vehicles. Growing and maintaining vegetarianproduce uses considerably less water than that of raising livestock.• Half of all water used in US is used to raise livestock, this seen as a dramatic waste of valuable nature resources.• It takes several pounds of vegetarian product to produce one pound of meat.• It is proven that in the UK over half of all food grown goes to the production of livestock.• Consuming meat can create around half of the world’s pollution, where as traffic only causes 11%.For political reasons• If all the resources provided for meat production were diverted; there is believed that there could be enough food to feed everyone on the earth.• The production of meat produce is considered wasteful; it takes several pounds of grain to produce just one produce of meat.• An even distribution of food and valuable resources in the world is considered possible if the produce fed to farm animals was used to feed people instead.A large percentage of the food grown in the world today goes into feeding livestock for meat.For psychological reasons• Some individuals just find meat unappealing.• People can often be put of from eating meat due to stories in the media and turn to vegetarian labels e.g. 2013, The Horse Meat Scandal.http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/mar/05/horsemeat-scandal-sales-vegetarian-alternatives• Some people can be allergic or have phobias of meat produce.
For religious/philosophical reasons• People choosing the vegetarian lifestyle believe that the treatment andprolonged cruelty of animals in the meat industry is “inexcusable”.• Individuals also believe that animals are no different from the human race andsociety denies their natural rights and that they should not be raised forslaughter.• Religions such as Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism worship cows and considerthem sacred, there for it is considered morally wrong and insulting to eat meatwithin those religions. An example being in states like India, the meat is tabooand slaughter houses are prohibited from society.• It is scientifically proven that animals have individual personalities andfeelings, although they made not be as thoroughly in-depth as the humans–vegetarians believe that putting an animal through fear and pain is intolerable.• Eating meat is believed to create “bad karma”.
JainismIn this particular Indian religion, the concept of Jainism is topromote ahimsa; meaning “non-injuring”. This relates toachieving a goal of very little violence to living organisms. In thecommunity it is mandatory to obtain a vegetarian diet withmembers either been lacto-vegetarian or vegans. Anyconsumption or intake of meat or substance taken from a deadanimal is forbidden, this goes roughly the same for theunnecessary injury of plants and minuscule organisms.Ahimsa is considered to be the most essential duty in the Jainismreligion, they do not pose any beliefs in the sacrifice of animalsand consider all living forms to be equal amongst thecommunity. People following the religion also have a strongbelief in the effects of karmic influences and that the suffering ofanimals and other living organisms will later arise and effect thehuman population due to their actions of slaughtering for food.“Hinduism holds that such influences affect he who permits theslaughter of an animal, he who cuts it up, he who kills it, he whobuys or sells meat, he who cooks it, he who serves it up, and hewho eats it. They must all be considered the slayers of theanimal.”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegetarianism_and_religion
HinduismFollowing the vegetarian diet is a fundamental part of most school communities in the Hindureligion. Over the course of time the range of beliefs and practices has expanded and changed dueto what individuals believe is true and fair. Overall only a minor percentage of Hindus arevegetarians as the majority do not take into consideration the aspects of vegetarianism.In the Hinduism, based in India – a land where agriculture was easy and the idea of living of avegetarian diet became popular. The process of animal sacrifice was scrapped in Vedic rituals andwas further replaced by integrating a vegetarian diet. Also, due to the heavy heated climate thatvaries over the seasons – which enables them to grow a great amount of vegetation produce. Thisenabled the community to create a variety of meals that don’t include meat produce, India producesome of the world’s most famous herbs and spices to create a range of different flavours to add tosimple meals.As previously stated, not all Hindus are vegetarian. It is believed that the beliefs and overall natureof diet is set out across different areas of India. Communities living in the costal areas or in the riverdeltas of Ganges and Brhamaputra east fish as it is a traditional element of their diet, due to beensurrounded by fresh water.Communities from warrior/rajput caste tend to eat meat as a matter of course and to show anelement of strength and power amongst their fellow neighbours.Communities in the lower castes have little religious injunctions and eat meat if it is available tothem, if and when they can.Hindus who moved to India across from Africa, Trinidad, Fiji and Europe, USA etc. are often veryrestricted to eat a vegetarian diet. Often very little vegetation was available to them in the laterstages of the year so this again pushed them to eat animal produce rather than a vegetarian diet.
Vegetarian CompaniesQuorn :Quorn are the leading brand in imitation meat mycoprotein in the United Kingdom.The mycoprotein that Quorn uses to create their product is expanded from a typeof fungus. Quorn is produced as a type of ready meal and as a brand of ingredients.It is sold as a health food and also as an alternative to meat. Quorn received thevegetarian seal of approval when they made sure that only free range eggs wereused in their products. Quorn was first introduced into retail in 1994 and wasintroduced into the US in 2002. The initial advertising included sports personalitiesincluding Ryan Giggs, Will carling and Sally Gunner.Redwood :Redwood are a company that specialise in creating meals that are completelyfree from any kind of animal ingredients. They can create animal freemeats, fish and dairy free cheeses. They pride the fact that they create foodproducts that save not only animals but also help people and the environment.‘’ What makes our foods special? The fact that theyre just that little bitdifferent. From fish-style fingers and spicy falafel to meat-free ‘bacon, nuggetsand schnitzels, Redwood foods are inspirational, healthy and nutritious and agreat source of protein. Weve even picked up a few awards along the way.And been awarded ethical company status.’’Vegan Society :The Vegan society is an educational charity that promotes and support the veganway of life. Whilst the Vegan society differs from quorn and redwood in the factthat it doesn’t directly sell food or produce food for retail it does promote thelifestyle and give people a lot of avenues to research meals and look up thenutritional values. The website provides a great outlet for people to discover all ofthe facts and information that they need about veganism. There are even supportand help tips on how to make the transition to becoming a vegan.
Vegans and vegetarians are incredibly limited to what they can have at mealtime. Here is a list of foods prohibited from vegans and vegetarians.Canned Goods and Non-PerishableSoup base/stock/bouillon: meat or fish fatVegetable soup: meat or poultry brothWorcestershire sauce: anchoviesLard: solid animal fatCaesar salad / dressing: anchovies, possibly baconRefried beans: lardBeans in tomato sauce: porkBakery, Bread and CrackersCrackers: may contain animal-derived enzymesAmino L-cysteine: derived from animal hair or feathersWhey protein: a milk productOmega-3 enriched bread: may contain fish oilCandy, Desserts and ConfectionaryMarshmallows: gelatin (made from animal bones)Hard / chewy candies like Skittles or Starburst brands: gelatinJell-o or gelatin desserts: gelatinWhite sugar: filtered using animal bone charPie crusts: store-bought and some homemade contain lard and/or butterGlazed/candied cherries: cochineal/carmine (insect colouring)Candies made with red food colouring: cochineal/carmineCandies made with shellac or confectioners glaze: insect-derived ingredientsProduceApples, candy apples: shiny read coating made from beetles (cochineal/carmine)Caesar salad (pre-packaged): anchovies, possibly baconDairy/Frozen/Refrigerated ProductsFrozen hash brown potatoes: some contain lardYogurt or sour cream (especially low-fat brands): gelatinDHA-enriched products (for example; milk, orange juice, margarine, cheese, bread but not omega-3 eggs): gelatinCheese: rennet (scraped from the stomachs of cows)Margarine: gelatin, whey powder, caseinSoy cheese: most contain casein (a milk protein) to help them meltBeveragesBeerWineGelatin: The protein obtained by boilingskin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones with water. The substance isusually obtained from cows or pigs. Gelatin is also used inshampoos, face masks, and other cosmetics; as a thickener for fruitgelatins and puddings (such as Jell-O); incandies, marshmallows, cakes, ice cream, and yogurts; onphotographic film; in vitamins as a coating and as capsules; and it issometimes used to assist in "clearing" wines.Not all beers and wines are made using animal products.Whether a beverage is made using animal products ornot, this information is not listed on the label. No animalingredients are present in the final product (beer, wine)but some are filtered with animal products like isinglass.