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I am new to being a vegetarian. I have a regular diet of quinoa, lentils, carrots, kale, asparagus, nutritional yeast, tofu, walnuts, flax seeds, balsamic dressing and small amounts of Ezekiel bread.

I like my diet but I am wondering if I am including enough to give my body everything it needs. I avoid sugar. Can you please give me your advice on my diet and include things I should add. I love being healthy and I want to do this the right way!

  • Vegetarian or vegan? You say vegetarian but you name only vegan items (though i don't know what ezekiel bread is). I don't see any pulses there could add some. – badjohn Mar 2 at 0:00
  • @badjohn lentils are pulses – Nic Mar 2 at 6:01
  • @Nic Woops, missed that but there are others that could be added: kidney beans, chickpeas, etc. – badjohn Mar 2 at 6:31
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    This question is in the grey area of what is permitted on Vegetarianism.SE. We don't allow questions about personal medical advice, and personalized nutrition recommendations are close to that. You are better off talking to a dietitian or nutritionist about what you eat daily. – Nic Mar 2 at 19:08
  • I do not eat eggs. I do not drink milk. – gary welch Mar 4 at 21:05
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The foods you've listed are a good foundational starting point to a diet, but if this is an exhaustive list of things you eat daily then there are a couple notes I'd like to point out.

You have not listed any sources of Vitamin B12. In order to be healthy on a vegetarian or vegan diet, it is necessary to guarantee some source of this vitamin. Take a look at this question: What is a good source of Vitamin B12 for a vegan?

A diet comprised of only these foods may be a little low on Vitamin C. There are many foods which are great sources of vitamin C. My personal favourite is bell pepper (capsicum). A single medium-sized sweet red pepper provides an entire day's worth of vitamin C in less than 50 kcal.

This diet is very low in Vitamin E. This is a fat-soluble vitamin and it is more concentrated in some foods that contain fats. Your sources of fat here are walnuts and flaxseed, but neither are a good source of Vitamin E. Almonds are a very good source of vitamin E, and would help to round out this diet.

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I think this question might be slightly too broad to be answered on this Q&A site. That being said, if you eat only the food that you have mentioned for some reason, it would definitely make sense to add to that list.

You mention a vegetarian diet but I don't see any dairy or egg products in that list so I guess you'd probably want to include some source of B12 there (nutritional yeast is often fortified with B12 but make sure to check and if it is your only source of B12, also make sure you eat it quite often). B12 is mostly gotten from animal products so if you want to follow vegetarian diet that would be your cheese and milk and eggs, but many vegan products such as soy milk and soy yoghurt or non-vegan products, such as breakfast cereals, are usually fortified with B12. Check the label for the information on how well the daily dose is covered by that specific product.

Another vitamin that you' like to make sure is more included in the diet you listed would be vitamin D. It can be synthesised by your body from sunlight so if you live somewhere very sunny this might not be such a concern but in general, the vegan foods that are fortified with B12 are fortified with vitamin D as well. If you'll go with vegetarian foods, eggs have quite high levels of vitamin D. A definite must-include are some types of mushrooms such as portobello, shiitake or maitake which are quite high in vitamin D as well.

As for a more exhaustive list of things to watch out for when transitioning diets, this site already has answer for this so feel free to have a look. It applies to vegans so if you aim to be a vegetarian, some things might not apply, but still, knowing more never hurt anybody.

  • Thank you for your input! I do use nutritional yeast everyday. I put a 15 gram serving on my food once a day. I will add mushrooms. – gary welch Mar 4 at 21:02

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