Adopt a balanced and healthy diet

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 January, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 04 January, 2008, 12:00am

People are concerned about their health nowadays. They use different methods to try to be healthy. Some opt to become vegetarian.

Although there are advantages to eating vegetables, there are also disadvantages in being vegetarian.

It's true that we can obtain essential nutrients like carbohydrates, fibre and vitamins from vegetables. Vegetarians rarely suffer from hypertension and high blood pressure.

But vegetarians may an unbalanced diet because there's not enough variety in their food intake. They could miss out on iron, for example, which is essential to growth in children and pregnant women.

They could also suffer from a lack of docosahexaenoic acid, which could cause behavioural and mood disorders. Fatty acids are another problem because they are not found in vegetables.

We should eat both meat and vegetables. To be healthy, we should have a balanced diet based on the food pyramid.

Cynthia Chiu, Methodist College

From the Editor

Thanks for your letter, Cynthia. I was a vegetarian for 13 years, so I know how difficult it can be to make sure that you get all your vitamins and nutrients. It is true that a good vegetarian diet is a healthy one, but lazy vegetarians - who do not make sure they get all their protein and vitamins - can live a less than healthy life.

I broke my vegetarian diet when I became a food reviewer - it was impossible only to review vegetarian restaurants! These days I still eat meat, but only a little. I've come to realise that it's never good to do things in extremes - everything in moderation, and you will live a long and happy life!

Kate, Editor