Tip of the Day
A vegetarian diet can include foods that may be unfamiliar to you. Below is a glossary of terms that are a common part of a vegetarian diet:
- Legumes: The vegetable family that includes beans, lentils, peas and peanuts, all of which are excellent sources of vegetable protein
- Nutritional Yeast: A health supplement grown on molasses, sugar beets or wood pulp and a rich source of vitamin B12 and protein
- Seitan (also called wheat gluten): A vegetarian replacement for meat, made of protein (gluten) extracted from flour
- Soybean: A legume, which is an excellent, inexpensive vegan source of protein and iron. Soybeans are used to make a number of vegetarian and vegan substitutions for meat, dairy and eggs.
- Soy cheese: A cheese-like product made from soybeans. Soy cheeses come in most of the same varieties as dairy cheeses, such as parmesan, mozzarella and cheddar. However, some soy cheeses are not vegan as they contain the animal protein casein.
- Soymilk: A milk-like product made from soybeans, with the same amount of protein and less fat than cow's milk. However, some soymilks are not vegan as they contain the animal protein casein.
- Tempeh: A replacement for meat, made from fermented soybeans
- Textured Vegetable Protein: Derived from soy flour, TVP is commonly used in vegetarian restaurants as a substitute for ground beef
- Tofu: A replacement for meat, eggs and cheese, made from curdled soymilk and pressed into blocks. Tofu can be eaten fresh or cooked in many different ways and is an excellent source of protein.
To learn more about living a vegetarian diet, visit the Vegetarian Lifestyle page and consult a registered dietitian in your area.
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Reviewed January 2013