VEGETARIAN DIET FOR WOMEN
A vegetarian is someone who doesn’t eat any kind of meat, including pork, beef, fish, chicken, mutton and may or may not choose to eat dairy products, eggs, honey and gelatin.
There are different categories of vegetarians:
WHY DO PEOPLE PREFER BEING VEGETARIAN?
Being a vegetarian is a personal choice. There are people whodecide to become vegetarian because of environmental, animal rights and or health reasons. We can relate to these or have different reasons.
A well-planned nutrition diet includes all the nutrients a woman needs to fulfill her nutritional requirements.
BENEFITS OF SWITCHING TO A VEGETARIAN DIET
Vegetarian diets are healthy, it decreases the risks of heart diseases, type 2 diabetes and cancer.Vegetarian diet is free of cholesterol and can be low on saturated fats. It is also said that for heart diseases known as the number 1 killer in women, the risk seems to be lower among women on vegan and vegetarian diets. Vegetarians eat more fiber and less saturated fat and have diets that are richer in antioxidants, so there are advantages of going on a vegan or vegetarian diet.
As going on a vegetarian diet means eliminating most of the food categories from your diet, it is necessary that those foods should be replaced with the foods having the same nutritional value found in animal products to balance their diet. When eating a variety of foods like fruits, vegetables, soy products, legumes, nut and seeds, wholegrains vegetarians can get enough nutrients from nonmeat sources. Vegetarian from the vegan category should pay attention on getting enough Protein, Vitamin D, Calcium, Iron, Vitamin B12 and omega 3 fatty acids,Iodine,Zinc.
IS BEING A VEGETARIAN A RISK FOR OLDER WOMEN?
Older women have more nutritional needs and health concerns such as maintaining weight and protecting bones and according to most medical professionals and people being a vegetarian can make a woman lack a lot on nutrition we can obtain from animal products, butthat does not mean that Plant-based diets are restricted for old women. As the matter of the fact these diets are suitable for older women.Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (the Academy) reported in its 2009 position statement on vegetarian diets that properly planned vegetarian and vegan diets are healthy and nutritionally suitable, and they may provide health benefits in the treatment of certain diseases during all stages of the life.A plant-based nutrition expert who specializes in diets for older women and the coauthor of Vegan for Her and Never Too Late to Go Vegan says that there are some nutrients which must be changed with age, and those needs can be fulfilled with foods from plant.
As energy needs decline in older age the women often struggle with weight gain so it is good for them to go on a vegetarian or vegan diet as this diet is related to a lower BMI.
ARE VEGETARIANS WHO AVOID DAIRY PRODUCTS AT A GREATER RISK OF OSTEOPOROSIS?
Older women who are opting for vegetarian diets should emphasis on calcium rich foods, since calcium needs increases with age and gender wise women are at a higher risk of developing bone loss.An intriguing study from the UK, says that vegetarian women had a higher risk of wrist fracture with lower protein intake, they also said that those women with lower legumes or meat intakes also faces hip fractures.For women who are on vegan diet, calcium-rich foods are fortified plant milks, fortified juices, tofu made with calcium sulfate, and leafy greens such as collards, turnip greens, kale, and bokchoy. Women on vegan diet are encouraged to have an exposure of 10-15 minutes of the sun to get Vitamin D.
REFERENCE INTAKES FOR WOMEN
The RIs are standards for the amount of energy (kilocalories), fat, saturated fat, carbohydrate, sugar, protein and salt that an average, moderately active women should have each day. The RIs for fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt are maximum daily amounts. There is no RI for fiber, although health experts suggest we have 25-30g a day.
Mentioned below are the RIs