vegetarian diet

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal, Encyclopedia.


1. the customary amount and kind of food and drink taken by a person from day to day.
2. more narrowly, a regimen of food intake planned to meet specific requirements of the individual, including or excluding certain foods. See also nutrition.
acid-ash diet a special diet prescribed to increase the acidity of the urine so that alkaline salts will remain in solution. The diet may be given to aid in the elimination of fluid in certain kinds of edema, in the treatment of some types of urinary tract infection, and to inhibit the formation of alkaline urinary calculi. Meat, fish, eggs, and cereals are emphasized, with little fruit and vegetables and no milk or cheese.
alkali-ash diet a therapeutic diet prescribed to increase the alkalinity of the urine and dissolve uric acid and cystine urinary calculi. This type of diet changes the urinary pH so that certain salts are kept in solution and excreted in the urine. Emphasis is placed on fruits, vegetables, and milk. Meat, eggs, bread, and cereals are restricted.
bland diet one that is free from any irritating or stimulating foods.
DASH diet (Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension) a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products; low in saturated and total fats; low in cholesterol; and high in fiber. Research studies support the hypothesis that this diet reduces blood pressure and may play a role in prevention of high blood pressure.
elemental diet one consisting of a well-balanced, residue-free mixture of all essential and nonessential amino acids combined with simple sugars, electrolytes, trace elements, and vitamins.
elimination diet one for diagnosis of food allergy, based on omission of foods that might cause symptoms in the patient.
Feingold diet a controversial diet for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, which excludes artificial colorings and flavorings, preservatives, and salicylates. The national institutes of health consensus statement, Diagnosis and Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, notes that exclusion diets like this are an area warranting additional research.
gluten-free diet see gluten-free diet.
high calorie diet one that furnishes more calories than needed to maintain weight, often more than 3500–4000 calories per day.
high fat diet one that furnishes more than 35 per cent of its total calories from fats; see also ketogenic diet.
high fiber diet one high in dietary fiber (typically more than 24 g daily), which decreases bowel transit time and relieves constipation.
high protein diet one containing large amounts of protein, consisting largely of meats, fish, milk, legumes, and nuts.
ketogenic diet one that produces ketones or acetones, or mild acidosis, such as one that is low in calories with insufficient carbohydrate and protein; it is occasionally used in the treatment of epilepsy. See also low fat diet.
liquid diet see liquid diet.
low calorie diet one containing fewer calories than needed to maintain weight, e.g., less than 1200 calories per day for an adult.
low fat diet one containing limited amounts of fat.
low fiber diet low residue diet.
low purine diet one for mitigation of gout, omitting meat, fowl, and fish and substituting milk, eggs, cheese, and vegetable protein.
low residue diet one with a minimum of cellulose and fiber and restriction of connective tissue found in certain cuts of meat. It is prescribed for irritations of the intestinal tract, after surgery of the large intestine, in partial intestinal obstruction, or when limited bowel movements are desirable, as in colostomy patients. Called also low fiber diet and minimal residue diet.
low tyramine diet a special diet required by patients receiving MAO inhibitors. Foods containing tyramine include aged cheeses, red wine, beer, cream, chocolate, and yeast.
minimal residue diet low residue diet.
protein-sparing diet one consisting only of liquid protein or liquid mixtures of proteins, vitamins, and minerals, containing no more than 600 calories; it is designed to maintain a favorable nitrogen balance. Such diets have been used in weight loss programs, but are used only rarely now, usually only in inpatient settings.
purine-free diet low purine diet.
vegan diet the diet of a vegan; see also veganism.
vegetarian diet see vegetarian diet.


1. excluding meat.
2. one who follows a vegetarian diet.
vegetarian diet one in which no meat is eaten. The strictly vegetarian (or vegan) diet allows no foods of animal origin. Maintenance of this diet requires a firm commitment to restriction of dietary intake, an extensive knowledge of dietary principles, and detailed planning to ensure nutritional adequacy. Deficiencies most likely to occur in a person who faithfully adheres to a vegetarian diet are those of protein, vitamin B12, riboflavin, vitamin D, and calcium.

There are variations of the so-called vegetarian diet in which animal products such as eggs and cheese are allowed: a lacto-vegetarian diet allows milk and milk products but prohibits the intake of meat, poultry, fish, and eggs. An ovo-lacto-vegetarian diet allows all foods from plants plus eggs, milk, and other dairy products. An ovo-vegetarian diet allows eggs and foods of plant origin but prohibits meat, milk, and other dairy products.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
If you wish to transition to a vegetarian diet, you must first educate yourself.
A 2013 US study of more than 73,000 people found a vegetarian diet is associated with a 12% reduction in all-cause mortality, and some reductions in death from specific diseases.
The research included 107 healthy but overweight participants, between 18 and 75 years of age, who were randomly assigned to follow for three months either a low-calorie vegetarian diet, which included dairy and eggs, or a low-calorie Mediterranean diet for three months.
Kahleova noted that vegetarian diets proved to be the most effective diets for weight loss.
A total vegetarian diet consists of foods devoid of animal products: meat (pork and beef), poultry (chicken, turkey, duck), fish, eggs and dairy (milk, cheese and yoghurt).
A vegan diet may protect against metabolic illnesses and inflammatory conditions to a greater degree than vegetarian diets, according to a 2014 review article conducted by Marian Glick-Bauer and Ming-Chin Yeh (CUNY School of Public Health, Hunter College, City University of New York).
Results of our study shows that a predominantly vegetarian diet lowest the TC and LDL-C there by reducing the risk of developing atherosclerosis and microvascular diseases.
Vegetarian diets and blood pressure: a meta-analysis.
Vegetarian diets did not appear to reduce cancer mortality, but, conversely, earlier analysis in AHS-2 of cancer incidence shows significantly reduced risks of female-specific and gastroinestinal cancers.
There is convincing evidence that a vegetarian diet is associated with a lower risk of heart disease, lower LDL cholesterol levels, and lower rates of hypertension and type 2 diabetes.
Denby says: "A vegetarian diet for babies can be perfectly healthy, but just like all children's diets, variety really is the critical issue.
In a bid to further beef up the all-natural standards for its Good Nature antibiotic- and hormone-free pork program, Cargill has converted to a 100 percent vegetarian diet for hogs that supply the line."Good Nature pork is targeted at a growing consumer audience that is very conscious of how and where their food is raised," relays Joe Linot, marketing manager for the Wichita, Kan.-based Cargill Pork.