Vegetarian Month

Vegetarian Month is observed in October.  It stems from World Vegetarian Day which was established by the North American Vegetarian Society on October 1, 1977.  While the word “vegetarian” dates to the 1800s the concept and practice of avoiding eating animal flesh dates back 2,500 years or more.


Reasons for becoming a vegetarian vary; from health reasons, a distaste for meats, or love of animals.

You may think becoming a vegetarian is simple. All you have to do is stop eating fish, meat, chicken and/or dairy.  While there are a number of variations to the Vegetarian diet, most can include: vegetables and fruits, grains and pulses (beans), nuts and seeds, eggs, dairy products, and honey. They do not usually include meat or poultry, fish or seafood, insects, gelatin or animal rennet, or stock or fats from animals.  The diets are plant based but you do need to make sure you are getting the necessary proteins and nutrients in your diet.

I have found a couple of websites that list several types of diets. Which diet do you prefer? I am sure most of us are number 4, flexitarian/semi vegetarian, which seems to be the easiest.

  1. Lacto-ovo Vegetarian – most common vegetarian diet in the U.S. They do not eat red or white meat, fish and shellfish, or insects or animal flesh of any kind, but do consume dairy and egg products. (“lacto” comes from Latin for milk, and “ovo” for egg). They tend to only eat free-range eggs, which are eggs produced from birds that have access to the outdoors
  2. Lacto Vegetarian – do not eat read or white meat, fish, or eggs, but do consume dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yogurt.
  3. Ovo Vegetarian – Ovo-vegetarians do not eat red or white meat, fish or dairy products, but do consume egg products.
  4. Flexitarian – is the combination of two words: Flexible and vegetarian. They are also known as semi-vegetarians, focus primarily consume a plant-based diet though enjoys meat on occasion.
  5. Pollotarian – is a semi-vegetarian diet in which someone chooses to eat chicken and other poultry but does not consume red meat, fish, and other animal meats.
  6. Pescatarian – is also considered a flexitarian and semi-vegetarian diet who eat fish and shellfish but do not consume red or white meats.
  7. Vegan – is an individual who decides to follow a vegan lifestyle. They enjoy a more liberal diet. Going vegan is going without all animal products, even in the forms of honey, gelatin, wool, leather, and other animal by product ingredients or products. Vegans typically do not use animal products such as silk, leather and wool, as well.

In addition to these seven types of diets another website The Spruce Eats added a couple more.

Raw Vegan or Raw Food Diet – consists of unprocessed vegan foods that have not been heated above 115 F or /46 C. They are also called a “raw foodist”. Belief that foods cooked above this temperature lose a significant amount of their nutritional value and become harmful to the body.

Macrobiotic – includes unprocessed vegan foods such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, and allows the occasional consumption of fish. Sugar and refined oils are avoided.  The most unique qualifier of the macrobiotic diet is its emphasis on the consumption of Asian vegetables, such a daikon radish, and sea vegetables, such as wakame and other seaweeds.

The Government has produced and Eatwell Guide – advise on healthy eating but the Vegetarian Society has adapted the guide to not include meat and fish. If you have special dietary requirements or medical need, you might want to check with a dietitian on how to adapt the Vegetarian Eatwell Guide.

Even if you are not a vegetarian you can celebrate by making it a point to eat more vegetables (and perhaps less meat) this month.  Want to become a vegetarian? The Vegetarian Society provides a “Going Veggie: What to eat Guide” .


Check out the following books at the Bellevue University Library.


Slow cooker favorites; vegetarian: 150+ easy, delicious slow cooker recipes, from stuffed peppers and scalloped potatoes to simple ratatouille. TX827.S55 2019



Plant-based nutrition TX392.H34 2018



7 types of Vegetarian diets

The Many Different Types of Vegetarian Diets

Vegetarian Society

National day Calendar

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