There exists a growing interest in vegan diets owing to sporadic meat product scarcities and the expectation that healthier diets might aid in tackling the coronavirus disease. Anyhow, vegan diets were popular before COVID-19 for a number of reasons. Research pieces published online, documentary shows on streaming platforms, and environmental concerns all contributed to the growing popularity of these diets. Therefore, we are surprised to see questions such as: “Is being an omnivore a good move?” Before we help to answer it, let us discuss what an omnivorous diet is.
What Does An Omnivorous Diet Mean?
There are animal products and plant-based food items in this diet. A vegan or plant-based diet may not be part of the omnivorous category, but several healthy diets fall under the latter. There exist many different interpretations of it. For one, some consider it a plant-forward diet because it comprises vegetarian food items and animal products.
Should I Follow It?
The fact that tends to be overlooked in all the vegan food-related debate is this: anyone can follow this particular diet. There is no research that compares it with a plant-based diet in part because people interpret it in many different ways. Are pizza and cheeseburger the main food groups of yours? Do you consume veggies and whole grains regularly, plus fish and bacon occasionally? If the answers to these two questions are yes, then you might be an omnivore. Present studies show the following facts.
- Whole food items are good for health;
- The quality of nutrients in your food options matter more than macronutrient ratios; and,
- Meeting a part of your protein requirements from plants alone is beneficial for health.
While there may be numerous benefits to consuming more plants, you need not limit your diet to these products alone. Instead, consider focusing on reducing your meat ingestion and raising your intake of plants. With more plants, come less rigidity. Do you consume 2-3 cups of veggies and the same amounts of fruits daily? Almost every US-based adult is not doing it. Do the grains you consume skew toward the ‘whole’ or ‘refined’ category? Are your protein sources plant-based products, like the ones made from soy and pulses?
Instead of labeling the diet you follow as ‘vegetarian’, ‘omnivore’, or ‘vegan’, consider the nutrient quality and the range of food items you actually consume. With these two things in mind, shop for maximum quality products available in the market.