Debate: Should you turn vegetarian?

Debate: Should you turn vegetarian?

UAE's influencers voice their opinions

Published: Fri 22 Sep 2017, 8:52 PM

Last updated: Thu 28 Sep 2017, 7:19 PM

There has been a shift by eateries around the world towards vegetarianism. "Vegan" has been something of a buzzword for a while now. Chefs around the world are reinventing vegetarian food, and giving new twists to vegetarian recipes from various countries. This shift from meat to vegetables has encouraged more restaurants and cafés in the UAE to include vegetarian and vegan dishes in their menu. And this makes it all the easier to consider turning vegetarian in a place like Dubai.  
What's more, going by facts, vegetarian food is full of nutrition and energy. It is much more beneficial than regular non-vegetarian meals as it is generous in vital nutrients, and kind on those extra carbohydrates. And, of course, no doctor has ever complained about a patient eating too much fruits or veggies!
If you've had meat all your life, and still truly enjoy devouring it, you will probably find the transition hard. But one must always keep their health in mind: there is much evidence to prove that types of meat - for example red meat - is bad for certain conditions. Owing to our sedentary lifestyle, we must all keep these issues in mind while thinking of an appropriate diet. If nothing else, think about the benefits of switching to healthy alternatives whenever possible - even something as simple as going organic.
At any given hour, a bowl of boiled vegetarian corn with parmesan and cilantro would be better for your body than fried chicken wings. That's not to say that you have to give up meat in order to be healthy, but there is a joy in knowing there is a delicious and healthy alternative waiting should you choose to do so. In the end, the type of food that is on your plate is completely up to you!
(Sneha Bhatia is the blogger behind You can keep up with her adventures on Instagram @happilysneha and on Twitter @happilysneha)

As a food writer, influencer, passionate foodie, mum of two and keen home cook, I believe that the choice of whether one should consider turning vegetarian should solely depend upon an individual. Every type of food has its benefits and nutritional values and as much as it sounds clichéd, eating in moderation is the key rather than refraining from a particular type of food.
I am an experimental cook and I love culinary explorations to try out various cuisines. I am obsessed with street food as well and believe that one can learn and discover a culture through its offerings. When I post pictures of food, the comments that pour in are independent of whether the dish is vegetarian or non-vegetarian. Yes, there might be the odd case when a vegetarian is repulsed by blatant display of meat or fish, but that is solely because of individual choice. Even within non-vegetarians, there might be different degrees of acceptance of non-vegetarian dishes. But one thing that never fails to attract attention is when I post a dessert picture. Whether it is the crunchiness of jalebis from the subcontinent or the gooey indulgence of a chocolate cake, the emotions shared on the virtual platform are unilateral. I find this interesting as I have seen that the preference for desserts is acquired. Many of my non-Indian friends from the blogging fraternity who are obsessed with Indian food do not necessarily like Indian desserts. But that doesn't stop them from drooling over dessert posts, especially the baked goodies made by my two girls who are popularly known as Z-Sisters in my blog!
This just goes to show you that, in the end, that everyone has their own tastes and preferences, which are shaped by so many things - from their culture to their upbringing. The only thing I wouldn't recommend is when one blindly follows a fad in the name of health. Do remember that eating raw or vegan does not automatically make a dish healthy. Yes, there is a need to occasionally detox, but one should follow a structured regime that is catered to an individual's need or dietary preference.
(Ishita B Saha writes at, a culinary travel blog featuring Dubai and the world beyond. Follow her on Twitter, Instagram & Facebook @ishitaunblogged)

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