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Healthy Diet

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    There are many conflicting viewpoints of what forms a healthy diet. With reference to current think on nutrition, comparing 2 or more specific forms of diets, what kind of diet would you recommend for a prolonged, healthy life?


Brunel University London

Brunel Language Centre

Pre-sessional English Course-10 weeks

Student Name: Huiying Ding

Student Number: 1706664

Tutor: Mrs. Christine Carr


Word count:1587

There is an increasing number of people who tend to avoid consuming meat because of their personal health and try to keep fit as they believe that eating vegetables and fruits would assist them in achieving a healthier body. A person who follows this theory is called a “vegetarian”. The vegetarian society defines a vegetarian as follows: "a vegetarian is someone who lives on a diet of grains, pulses, legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, fungi, algae, yeast and/or some other non-animal-based foods (e.g. salt) with, or without, dairy products, honey and/or eggs. A vegetarian does not eat food that consist of, or have been produced with the aid of products consisting of or created from, any part of the body of a living or dead animal. This includes meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, insects, by-products of slaughter or any food made with processing aids created from these." As a matter of fact, there are many factors contributing to being a vegetarian, whereas the health factor is the most essential cause.

Moreover, obesity, a state of being overweight, is a growing health concern all over the world and the main factor causing this is the unhealthy diet which significantly impacts the overall health and well-being of a person. Therefore, healthy diet is more valued by people. This essay will compare different types of vegetarian diets and the effect of vegetarianism to human body and recommend which diet can solve obesity and provide a beneficial effect on health. Firstly, the type of nutrition that human body needs will be explained; secondly, the reason why the individual tends to be a vegetarian will be described; thirdly, the advantages and disadvantages of vegetarian diet will be discussed; finally, the comparison of strict vegetarian and ovo-lacto diet,recommending the most suitable diet to conclude with.


Firstly, people need adequate amount of nutrition to maintain their level of energy throughout their day, which means they are required to obtain nutrition from variety of foods. Baggott (1998) defines nutrients as the substance in the food provides a functional ingredient or energy to the body. Besides, Baggott (1998)also mentioned that“an essential nutrient is a nutrient required for normal physiological function that cannot be synthesized by the body, and thus must be obtained from a dietary source.”. As the article says, nutrition must be obtained from diet as the body cannot provide enough quantity to meet its own needs.

There are six essential nutrients which are required for a body to function healthily and provide energy. These are carbohydrates (fats), oils, proteins, vitamins, water and inorganic salts (minerals). According to Murphy (2017), “Key nutrients such carbohydrates, fat, protein, vitamins and minerals are found in foods like cereals and grains, nuts, meat, poultry and fish, dairy foods, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes.”Based on this source it can be said that people are required to consume oils and proteins from meat and dairy foods other than relying on just vegetables since these essential nutrients play an important role in nourishing our body to grow, maintain a healthy life and also have a significant effect on our everyday energy. They work by breaking down the food we eat into valuable energy and nutrients to ensure that our body system remains in the best status.

Regardless of the health benefits from consuming meat, there are several reasons why people become vegetarian. It is either for their personal health and body, morality or religious reasons. Looking from a health perspective vegetarians eat fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans, which are low in fat and cholesterol content, but are rich in cellulose, vitamin C, vitamin E, k, folic acid, and magnesium. The ADA, (American Dietetic Association), reports that vegetarians have lower blood pressure, cholesterol and body weight than non-vegetarians. Some people choose to be vegetarian to protect the environment. “It is important to be mindful, however, that not all plant-based dieters are personally motivated to avoid animal products; rather, some dieters do so due to certain aversions and constraints. When asked why they make plant-based food choices, people report many reasons. Commonly reported reasons include concerns for animals, personal health, and the environment; disgust toward meat; and religious beliefs (Matthew, 2012).”

On the other hand, there are documentary films(Meat the Truth,2017)which reports that animal husbandry production accounts for 18% of global emissions, compared with 13% of all global transport,and a cow emits carbon dioxide a year, equal to 70, 000 kilometers of a medium-sized car. Hence why if every American avoid eating meat once in a week, it can save 99.6 trillion tons of carbon dioxide a year which is the equivalent of a plane flying between Los Angeles and New York back and forth 46 million times.


In addition, morality and religion are two reasons some vegetarians cannot resist. Some cannot agree with the idea of consuming meat of a living organism. After all, it would be hard to think of animals being slaughtered in the cramped confined spaces in factory and farms whilst eating hamburgers. Strict vegetarians have higher moral demands. They even refuse to eat dairy products or eggs which originates from animals, because in their opinion, shortens the life span of an animal. These type of vegetarians are called vegans. Dietary vegans (or strict vegetarians) refrain from consuming animal products, not only meat but also eggsdairy products and other animal-derived substances(Wright, 2015).”



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