The endless debate about whether vegetarian diet is healthier compared to the meat-based diet, or the other way round, has been existing since times immemorial.
The point is that any kind of a diet, be it vegetarian, meat-based or vegan, can have pros and cons.
People tend to be vegetarian due to various reasons like religious reasons, as a protest against animal cruelty, health reasons, etc.
Being vegetarian can be quite a bummer, especially if you visit exotic eateries, and you hardly find anything vegetarian on the menu!
However, a vegetarian diet comes with its own set of benefits. Many research studies have found that people who follow a vegetarian diet are at a lowered risk of obesity and cardiovascular diseases.
Especially in a country like India, vegetarians will never feel like they are missing out on good food, as there are an array of vegetarian delicacies available.
And yet, sometimes, following a vegetarian diet can mean that you may be missing out on certain vital nutrients like vitamins and minerals that are required for your body.
Have a look at some of the most important vitamins and minerals you need in your vegetarian diet, here, in this article.
1. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is very essential for the health of your immune system. So, vegetarians must add foods like spinach and citrus fruits to their diet to get enough vitamin C.
2. Vitamin D
Vitamin D helps in the better absorption of calcium by your bones, making them stronger. Substances like milk and mushrooms are rich in vitamin D.
3. Vitamin B12
Mainly found in animal-based food, vitamin B12 deficiency can cause fatigue, loss of balance and numbness in the body. The best vegetarian sources of vitamin B12 are milk and dairy products.
Zinc is required by the body for a better brain activity and mental health, so vegetarians can add foods like beans, peas and lentils to get enough zinc.
Iron is very important for the production of healthy red blood cells, and meat-based diet is a great source of iron. Vegetarians too can get enough iron by adding foods like spinach and other leafy greens to their diets.
Deficiency of iodine in your diet can cause hormonal disorders, and vegetarians are more prone to iodine deficiency, which can be corrected by adding foods like soybeans, sweet potatoes, etc, to their diet.
7. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
As omega-3 fatty acid deficiency can cause cardiovascular disorders, vegetarians need to ensure that they eat foods like nuts, avocados and flax seeds.