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Vegetarianism is the practice of abstaining from consumption of red meat, poultry and seafood. It may also include abstention from by-products of animal slaughter, such as animal-derived rennet and gelatin. Several motivations drive vegetarianism, including religion, ethical beliefs, health-related choices, or political, environmental, cultural or economic concerns. There are varieties of the diet as well: an ovo-vegetarian diet includes eggs but not dairy products, a lacto-vegetarian diet includes dairy products but not eggs, and an ovo-lacto vegetarian diet includes both eggs and dairy products. A vegan, or strict vegetarian, diet excludes all animal products, including eggs, dairy, and honey.
Western vegetarian diets are typically high in carotenoids, but relatively low in omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin B12. Vegans can have particularly low intake of vitamin B and calcium if they do not eat enough items such as collard greens, leafy greens, tempeh and tofu (soy). High levels of dietary fiber, folic acid, vitamins C and E, and magnesium, and low consumption of saturated fat are all considered to be beneficial aspects of a vegetarian diet.
Healthcare providers stress that vegetarians and vegans consumer enough protein as well. The only vegetable sources with significant amounts are: lupin beans, soy, hemp seed, chia seed, amaranth, buckwheat and quinoa. Whole grains and rice, when combined with complementary plant sources such as beans, can also provide a complete protein source.
All Nature's Earthly Choice™ grains and seeds are vegan, as well as the falafel mixes, flours and powders.