Micronutrients and vegetarians
Vegetarian diets have been practiced since ancient times. The popularity of vegetarian diets in recent years has been fuelled by ethical considerations, health concerns, environmental issues, and reli-gious factors. The reason a person chooses to be vegetarian influences the pattern of foods they consume, from only eating plant foods to permitting dairy and/or egg products in the diet. When a vegetarian diet is appropriately planned, it can be nutritionally adequate for individuals through all stages of the life cycle and can promote health and lower the risk of major chronic diseases. Avoiding nutrient-dense meat or animal-based diets means paying close attention to the diet in order to ensure balanced nutrition and an adequate micronutrient intake.