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8 Best Healthy Foods for Vegetarian People

Vegetarians refer to people whodon’t consume seafood, meat, and poultry in their diet because of health, environmental, religious, or ethical reasons. Instead, they mainly take plant-based food, but others may include dairy (milk) and eggs. There are different types of vegetarians; vegans, Lacto-vegetarians, ovo-vegetarians, and lacto-ovo vegetarians.

A well-balanced plant-based diet offers many health benefits, like a reduced risk of developing chronic diseases like obesity, diabetes, hypertension, coronary heart disease, and certain cancers. You are also less likely to contract degenerative diseases like Parkison’s and Alzheimer’s.

Vegetarians should have a balanced plant diet that meets all their dietary needs. Although plant-based foods are nutrient-rich, some essential nutrients may miss out, including proteins, minerals (iron, calcium, and zinc), and Vitamin D and B12.

Here are the best healthy foods for vegetarians to help you meet all your dietary needs and stay in good shape.   

1. Tofu and Tempeh

They are both derived from soybeans and serve as minimally processed meat alternatives. Soybeans are highly versatile and readily available food products on a global soy supply chain. Tempeh comes from fermented soybeans. It has a nutty and firmer texture and is suitable for grilling, marinating, or adding to sandwiches.

Tofu comes from curdled soymilk drained and pressed into a block. It is ideally used in flavorful dishes as it has a soft taste and takes the taste of the food you cook with. Tofu and tempeh are rich in proteins, calcium, iron, fiber, and potassium. They are a great source of isoflavones known for cancer prevention and enhancing a healthy heart.

2. Leafy Greens

Leafy greens contain vital nutrients that help your body fights infections. Spinach, kale, and broccoli are leafy greens packed with iron, calcium, magnesium, and vitamins A, C, and K. They are also rich in antioxidants. You can take leafy greens by blending them in a smoothie, eating them raw in a salad, or including them in vegetable hummus wraps.

Leafy greens offer a calcium boost to vegans and are a substitute for dairy milk, which most vegans do not consume. Leafy greens provide health benefits by safeguarding your body from certain cancers, cardiovascular and diabetes. They also aid weight loss, promote eye health, and boost body metabolism.

 3. Nuts and Seeds

Nuts are excellent plant foods known for fighting off diseases in the body. They contain unsaturated fats that combine with other nutrients to help prevent diabetes and heart diseases. Both contain dense antioxidants that work by reducing body inflammation.

Almonds, walnuts, hemp seeds, and chia seeds are particularly beneficial for vegetarians as they are a great source of omega fatty acids, Vitamin E, minerals, and fiber. Nuts and seeds are excellent protein substitutes for eggs, meats, and fish. Vegans should have this food as part of their daily diet to get adequate protein.

You can take nuts and seeds as a snack, as an addition to salads, or incorporate them into meals like oatmeal.

4. Seaweed

Another healthy food for vegetarians is seaweed, a plant diet rich in essential fatty acids- docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which plays a critical role in brain development. Seaweed is also a great source of potassium, magnesium, manganese, iodine, and good antioxidants.

Seaweed supports gut health, and thyroid function, prevents or maintains diabetes, improves heart health, and aids in weight loss. Eat seaweed raw and fresh, or add it to salads or main meals. You can also use it to flavor vegetable soups, as a topping on grains, or roast it with oil and salt and eat.

5. Lentils

Lentils refer to high-protein pulses, an excellent substitute for meat among vegetarians. Lentils come in various types; red, brown, and green. They are vital sources of proteins, fiber, and complex carbohydrates.

There are numerous health benefits to including lentils in your diet. It manages blood sugar levels, prevents incurable diseases like diabetes, and promotes a healthy digestive gut and heart. You can use lentils to make healthy meals like grain bowls, salads, and soup. It also serves as a meat substitute in vegan quinoa chili.   

6. Quinoa

It is a nutrient-dense whole grain packed with all essential amino acids required by the body and is the sole plant protein with complete proteins. It contains high fiber, responsible for heart health and digestion, vitamin B, and iron.

It also boasts phytic acid known for its potential to reduce blood pressure and regulate blood sugar levels. Quinoa is an ideal meat- substitute for vegetarians, and you can use it to make salads, stir-fries, etc.

7. Berries

Vegetarians should also incorporate fruits into their meals and salads to have a complete and balanced diet. Berries are a must-have fruit, rich in vitamin C to boost the immune system, fiber to improve gut health, and antioxidants that help prevent cell damage. They also promote healthy skin and brain function.

Berries come in various types- raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries. Enjoy berries as a snack, blend in smoothies, and as an addition to salads, yogurt, or morning cereal. 

8. Fortified Plant Milk

Include fortified plant milk in your diet to help you meet vitamin D, vitamin B12, and calcium body requirements. Vitamin D promotes calcium absorption, while Vitamin B12 helps prevent anemia and helps in the production of red blood cells. Fortified plant milk is an alternative to cow’s milk. Consume plant milk or yogurt made from soy, coconut, cashew, oat, hazelnut, etc.


Plant-based diets refer to healthy foods that prevent the contraction of chronic illnesses like diabetes, blood pressure, and certain cancers. They are nutrient-rich plant food that offers proteins, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to your body. Choose from a wide range of healthy foods, from tofu quinoa, seaweed, berries, leafy greens, nuts and seeds, and fortified plant milk.