A Diet Menu for Vegetarians

You can follow a vegetarian diet and still get all the nutrients your body needs. Many options are available, including milk alternatives and soy-based "meat" products. There are three types of vegetarian diets. Vegans do not eat any food that has an animal origin. If you follow the lacto-vegetarian diet, you can include milk products, while a lacto-ovo vegetarian diet allows you to consume dairy products and eggs.
Starting off with a balanced breakfast is an essential start to your day. Eat foods from each part of the vegetarian pyramid, including grains, legumes and nuts, vegetables, fruits, and good fats. Make yourself a quick omelet with sauteed spinach. Top it of with a sprinkle of feta cheese for added flavor. Enjoy a side of whole-wheat toast with a scoop of strawberry preserves. You can have a glass of orange juice, which will count toward your fruit intake for the day. Drinking 8 oz. of 100 percent juice is equivalent to eating one cup of fresh fruit, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture's MyPyramid.

Morning Snack
For a mid-morning snack, pack your favorite whole fruit, such as a pear, apple or orange. The fiber content will help keep you satisfied until lunch. Enjoy an ounce of almonds, which will provide you with some protein and heart-healthy monounsaturated fat. You need to drink water throughout the day to keep yourself hydrated. Have a glass of water with each meal or snack.
For lunch, make yourself a veggie burger on a whole-wheat bun. Add lettuce, onion and tomato and finish it with a hummus spread. Top it with a few fresh avocado slices, which are high in monounsaturated fat. Your body needs fat to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K, according to Young Women's Health. As a quick dessert, enjoy warm peaches over low-fat frozen yogurt. You can purchase frozen peaches and microwave them with a sprinkle of brown sugar. This entire meal includes everything you need to fit a well-balanced diet.
Afternoon Snack
When you feel sluggish in the afternoon, do not reach for coffee or soda. On a cold day, make yourself a cup of green tea. In the summer months, drink unsweetened ice tea with a slice of fresh lemon. Enjoy celery stalks with peanut butter or baby carrots with reduced-fat ranch dressing. These veggies are full of fiber, which will keep you full for hours.
For dinner, make enchiladas filled with vegetarian black beans and topped with reduced-fat cheddar cheese. You can prepare them the night before and put them in the oven as soon as you get home from work. While they are baking, prepare a side of wild rice with vegetable stock for added flavor.

Enjoy a tossed salad on the side with spinach, sunflower seeds, cherry tomatoes, red onion slices and a teaspoon of your favorite cheese. Drizzle it with red wine vinegar and healthy extra virgin olive oil. Wrap Asian pears in foil and bake on a low heat while you prepare and eat your dinner. When you finish eating, you will have a soft warm pear that is delicious with low-fat frozen yogurt and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Finish your meal with a glass of chocolate rice milk.

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