The New Normal: Why You Need To Discover The Flexitarian Diet

02.08.17 Eat, Grow, Learn Blog SumoSalad

We’re diving into the last four weeks of winter and we’ve never been more committed to making a positive difference to the lives of all Australians. Here at Sumo we’re deeply passionate about creating fresh, delicious dishes that nourish from the inside out; food that makes you fall in love with eating well.

We’re also deeply passionate about our local communities and helping those in need…and we’d love you to join us in making a difference. It’s super simple: for every Sumo meal shared on social media this winter and tagged with #heatupthestreet, we’ll deliver a meal to someone who really needs it through OzHarvest.

As we push through the last weeks of the chilly season we can’t help but get excited about the promise of spring and the amazing variety of fresh, seasonal produce that comes along with it. Today our resident dietician Rebecca Gawthorne chats to us about the Flexitarian movement and why this uber flexible approach to eating could be perfect for you…

The New Normal: Why You Need To Discover The Flexitarian Diet

“Have you heard of any of the following types of eating patterns?

·       Vegetarian
·       Lacto-vegetarian
·       Ovo-lacto-vegetarian
·       Pescetarian
·       Vegan

These different diets, or ways of eating, have gained momentum and attracted cult followings, especially on social media, over the recent years, and for good reasons! These diets, if done correctly, can offer exceptional health benefits.

Those who follow a vegan diet for example, don’t consume any animal products. This means they exclude dairy, eggs, seafood, meat & chicken. Vegan diets are usually higher nutrients like dietary fibre, magnesium, folic acid, vitamins C and E and phytochemicals, and they tend to be lower in calories, saturated fat and cholesterol, resulting in reduced risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), obesity, type 2 diabetes, and some cancers. However, because vegan diets are restrictive and eliminate whole food groups, they can also have their downfalls. If the animal products are not replaced with other nutritious foods high in the key nutrients contained in the animal products, they can fail to meet their requirements for long-chain n–3 (omega-3) fatty acids, vitamin D, calcium, zinc, and vitamin B-12.

Another way of eating, the Pescetarian diet, is similar to vegan in that it’s plant based, but is more flexible with the inclusion of fish & seafood, but no meat, chicken, eggs or dairy. Pescetarians also benefit from reduced risks of chronic disease but if not done correctly, may lack in certain nutrients.

A new way of eating has emerged recently called flexitarian eating. Those who follow this way of eating are called flexitarians & they primarily follow a plant based style of eating with the occasional inclusion of meat, chicken, dairy, eggs and seafood. Flexitarian eating is much less restrictive and those who follow it still gain the benefits of plant based diets (vegan, vegetarian etc) often without lacking in the key nutrients in animal products. A flexible eater for example, may eat plant based each week night and then enjoy a meat meal or seafood meal at social times on the weekend.

I spoke with SumoSalad’s co-founder, Luke, who explained that he changed to a flexible style of eating & the change in his diet helped open his eyes to all the amazing variety of plant based eating. Plus it made him feel amazing too! He noticed a great improvement in his physical and mental state, plus felt lighter and more energetic. He also said that he tried going completely vegan, and enjoyed it too, but preferred having less restrictions in the Flexitarian way of eating.

SumoSalad is one of Australia’s largest healthy fast food retailer outlets and allows you to be completely flexible with your way of eating. At Sumo Salad, you have the ability to create your very own salad and the freedom to mix and match any combo of ingredients to design your salad exactly how you want it. So whether you are vegetarian, vegan, pescetarian or a flexitarian, be sure to stop by SumoSalad and create your very own Salad.”


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