While there are benefits of having a veggie-based diet, it is easier said than done. These four tips from the Vegetarian Society of Singapore will help!
Apart from environmental concerns and the need to treat animals with kindness, adopting a diet that is anchored by vegetables has health benefits.
Regular consumption of red meat increases the risk of kidney failure, according to a Singapore Chinese Health Study.
For Dr George Jacobs, President of the Vegetarian Society of Singapore and Ms Pauline Menezes, its honorary secretary, having a vegan or vegetarian way of life comes naturally.
They spoke at a recent Food That Heals conference, which was attended by industry experts and members of the public.
These four tips will help you ease into a diet with more vegetables:
1) Get creative with meals
Grab vegetarian recipes from cookbooks or the Internet, but leave some room for creativity when planning weekly meals. “Think of a few of your favourite dishes with meat in it. Turn these into plant-based meals, by looking for substitutes or alternatives for meat,” Ms Menezes said.
2) Ask for vegetarian options when eating out
Most restaurants have vegetarian options, with some even dedicating a page of its menu to these. “So don’t be afraid to ask,” Dr Jacobs said. Happy Cow is a great app to download, as it has a comprehensive list of vegetarian and vegetarian-friendly joints in town, he added.
3) Consume a variety of greens and grains
‘Vegetarian’ shouldn’t mean boring, or worse, having a diet that is lacking in nutrition. Consume a power plate with equal portions of fruit, grains, vegetables and legumes. “Don’t stress too much if you don’t have all four food groups, because you can always make up for in the next meal,” Ms Menezes quipped.
4) Find a circle of like-minded friends
The Vegetarian Society of Singapore has fun events where participants make vegan ice cream, or socialise over a meal at popular restaurants. “We have a lot of fun. The diet is appropriate for people in all stages of life,” Dr Jacobs said.
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