Skip to Main Content Health Care Professionals Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit Search

Vegetarian Eating

A well planned vegetarian eating plan can be both healthy and delicious! People at any age or stage in life can follow a vegetarian diet. The key is to make sure you get all the nutrients you need be healthy. A registered dietitian can help you plan a healthy vegetarian diet.

What type of vegetarian are you?

Type Does Eat Does Not Eat
Pesco Vegetarian Fish, shellfish, eggs, dairy products, grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts Meat, poultry, or products containing these foods
Lacto Vegetarian Dairy products, grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts Meat, fish, poultry, eggs or products containing these foods
Ovo Vegetarian Eggs, grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts Meat, fish, poultry, dairy or products containing these foods
Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian Eggs, dairy products, grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts Meat, fish, poultry or products containing these foods
Vegan Grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy, honey or products containing these foods

A well planned vegetarian eating plan is lower in saturated fat and cholesterol and higher in fibre and some vitamins like vitamin C. Studies have shown a well-planned vegetarian eating plan may help protect against heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, obesity, some cancers and high cholesterol.

Important Nutrients for Vegetarians

Nutrients Why It’s Important Food Sources
Protein Keeps red blood cells and muscles working well. Milk products, legumes (beans, lentils, peas), soy, nuts, seeds, eggs and whole grains such as quinoa.
Zinc Helps in wound healing and boosts the immune system. Legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains.
Iron Helps carry oxygen around the body. Legumes, fortified pasta, quinoa and dark green vegetables.
Omega-3 Promotes heart health in adults and brain and eye development in infants. Fortified soy beverages, orange juice, omega-3 eggs, canola oil, soybean oil, flax seed and walnuts.
Vitamin B12 Helps make red blood cells and DNA. Fish, eggs, cow’s milk, cheese, fortified soy or rice beverages, fortified soy-based meat substitutes.

Related Resources

Related Topics