Garcinia plant images

Garcinia plant images
Also reccommended to be taken with Apple Cider Vinegar Capsules and/or Colon Cleanse.

Garcinia Cambogia – Hydroxycitric Acid Extract For Weight Loss?

Up until October 28th, 2012, few people around the world knew about ‘garcinia cambogia' and would have lost first round of a national spelling bee if asked what it was. But thankfully there is always hope for tomorrow, and for garcinia, the future would get much brighter.

Remembering the day so clearly, being October 29, 2012 – when Doctor OZ's Garcinia Cambogia extract episode airing for no more than 6 minutes became a world-wide sensation and phenom in a matter of New-York marketing minutes – fast forward from Oct 28 to Oct 29 to 2017; this is our assembled garcinia story of facts, figures and semi-unfortunate fallacies surrounding the most popular diet pill, phrase and product ever created…

Origins Of Garcinia (Malabar Tamarind/Gummi-Gutta)

Garcinia Cambogia is one of the most controversial dietary nutrition supplements in the world today. Some people swear a pure extract of Garcinia Cambogia is an extremely effective weight loss tool and appetite suppressant – and others, not so much reporting negative side effects galore like dry mouth, dizziness, toxicity and stomach aches – but for us, no matter where on the scale of effectiveness and results, it was only the start of the surface level conversation as most of hard to swallow at face value heresay is based on a 5 to 6 minute video clip produced by Dr Oz TV Show (much like forskolin).

So what’s the real one-size-fits-all truth about Garcinia Cambogia HCA extract and its potential weight loss qualities? What does science have to say about this unique malabar tamarind tropical plant?

Today, we’re going to round up every updated 2016 and 2017 credible medical science resource we can find has to say about the facts vs fiction of garcinia cambogia extract for weight loss and natural appetite suppressant.

What is Garcinia Cambogia?

Although the term “Garcinia cambogia” is no longer used by the scientific community, it’s the primary term used by the nutritional supplement community. Other names for this fruit include brindleberry, Malabar tamarind, and kudam puli.

The Garcinia cambogia fruit itself looks like a small pumpkin. It typically features a greenish, pale yellow color and has wrinkled, grooved skin. In terms of size, it’s somewhere between an orange and grapefruit.

Today, Garcinia cambogia is grown for its fruit in tropical climates around the world, including Southeast Asia, south India, and west and central Africa. That fruit is used in cooking and is especially popular in curries.

History of Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia cambogia is a relatively new trend in the dietary supplement community. However, it’s been well-known in the traditional medicine community for quite some time.

For thousands of years, Garcinia cambogia remained relatively unknown. But in 2012, the trajectory of Garcinia cambogia changed forever when world-famous TV personality Dr. Oz claimed that Garcinia cambogia could be used for natural weight loss with “no diet or exercise” required.

Since 2012, a number of scientific reports have been published examining the effectiveness of Garcinia cambogia and its rumored health benefits.

The weight loss claims of Garcinia cambogia have faced a lot of criticism, and we’ll take a look at the rumored weight loss benefits of Garcinia cambogia below.

Health Benefits of Garcinia Cambogia

Those who support Garcinia cambogia claim that it has been linked to a number of powerful health benefits.

Now, there are two different types of health benefits of Garcinia cambogia.

However, many of the weight loss benefits of Garcinia cambogia are said to come from the rind of the fruit, which contains a compound called hydroxycitric acid (HCA).

Ultimately, the rumored health benefits of garcinia cambogia include:

  • Weight Loss
  • Appetite Suppression
  • Reduced Risk Of Heart Disease And Better Cardiovascular Health
  • Reduced Risk Of Diabetes
  • Reduced Fat Buildup And Reduced Abdominal Fat
  • Better Metabolism
  • Reduced Risk Of Ulcers
  • Healthier Digestion

These are the rumored health benefits of Garcinia cambogia. Below, we’ll see if any of those health benefits come with real scientific evidence.

Scientific Evidence for Garcinia Cambogia

Garcinia cambogia hasn’t been extensively studied. However, the studies on Garcinia cambogia that have been published have demonstrated mixed results. Instead of telling you whether or not Garcinia cambogia works, I’m going to summarize the scientific studies on Garcinia cambogia below:

In 1998, a study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. This study was published in response to a flurry of promising reports on HCA, the active ingredient in Garcinia cambogia.

Unfortunately for HCA supporters, the 1998 study showed that “Garcinia cambogia failed to produce significant weight loss and fat mass loss beyond that observed with placebo.” 1

The study took place over 12 weeks and involved a total of 135 subjects.

I Lost 21 lbs in 4 Weeks, No Special Diet, No Intense Exercise." In conclusion, if you are a little doubtful about the effects of this diet, you need to try it for yourself.

Some of the subjects took HCA, while others took a placebo. By the end of the 12 week period, the HCA group had not exhibited a statistically significant difference in terms of percentage body fat loss or weight loss.

Some thought this would be the end of HCA as a dietary supplement. But other studies have offered conflicting results.

Criticisms Of This Study

One of the main criticisms of this study comes from Harry Preuss, a researcher at Georgetown University who claims that the JAMA study “used whatever the dose was at the time, and they never mentioned the type of citrate they used.” In other words, they may have been using the wrong HCA.

Additionally, others have criticized this study for its heavy use of dietary fiber. Dietary fiber is thought to interfere with HCA, which could have inhibited weight loss in the HCA group.

In 2003, Japanese researchers published a study in Fitoterapia. This study examined the effects of Garcinia cambogia extract on mice over a period of 4 weeks.

The research concluded by stating that treatment “was found to have no effect on body weight, fat pad weight, or serum glucose level.”

However, Garcinia cambogia was shown to have other physiological effects. Treated mice displayed lower levels of serum insulin and leptin, for example, as well as a lower ratio of leptin/WAT.

This led researchers to conclude that “G. cambogia extract efficiently improved glucose metabolism and displayed leptin-like activity.”

Dr. Preuss, the guy we just motioned above, decided to lead his own study on HCA. Dr. Preuss’s study involved 30 “healthy but overweight people” between the ages of 21 and 50. The study took place over an 8 week period. 2

Dr. Preuss and his team found some surprising results. All of the subjects were told to consume a diet of 2,000 calories per day and walked for half an hour five days per week.

One group was given Super CitriMax, a patented form of HCA bound with calcium and potassium. The other group was given a placebo.

By the end of the 8 week period, the placebo group had lost an average of 3 pounds. However, the HCA group had lost an average of 12 pounds – a 400% difference.

Additionally, the HCA group saw their BMI fall by an average of 6.3% compared to the placebo group’s average of 1.7%.

Another interesting effect of the study was that the HCA group saw their serotonin levels double compared to the placebo group. Additionally, the HCA group had a 16% reduction in the amount of food they ate per meal, compared to no change with the placebo group.

Like all good researchers, Dr. Preuss tried to replicate his results in a follow-up study. That follow-up study involved more subjects (60 people in total, double the original study) and came to similar conclusions.

In this study, the HCA group lost an average of 10.5 pounds compared to the placebo group, which lost an average of 3.5 pounds.

Once again, in this study, the placebo group had no change in appetite, but the HCA group reported a 16% reduction in the amount of food consumed per meal.

Dr. Preuss also has his name attached to a 2005 research report on Garcinia cambogia and hydroxycitric acid. This time, Dr. Preuss collaborated with five other doctors to discuss the powerful health benefits of HCA. 3

Specifically, researchers demonstrated that HCA was much more effective when bound to certain other compounds. Naturally, HCA is bound to calcium, which reduces its bioavailability. Calcium is found naturally in Garcinia cambogia. So if you were to just eat the rind of Garcinia cambogia fruit, you would be eating HCA bound to calcium.

But when HCA is bound to salt, it makes the compound water-soluble, increasing its bioavailability. This compound is called HCA-SX, also known by its trademarked name, Super CitriMax.

When taken in the form of HCA-SX, this compound was shown to “increase serotonin availability, reduce appetite, increase fat oxidation, improve blood lipid levels, reduce body weight, and modulate a number of obesity regulatory genes without affecting the mitochondrial and nuclear proteins required for normal biochemical and physiological functions.”

In other words, this report demonstrated HCA had all of the powerful weight loss benefits it was rumored to have – with no major side effects. You just had to bind the compound to salt.

We can make a few broad conclusions about Garcinia cambogia from the studies listed above.

— First, we can conclude that hydroxycitric acid (HCA) is the most active ingredient within Garcinia cambogia and the one most intimately connected with weight loss.

Yes, there are other ingredients in Garcinia cambogia, including calcium, phosphorus, iron, and thiamine, but none of these ingredients are available in high enough doses to compete with the benefits provided by HCA.

— Second, we can conclude that HCA is not very effective when taken on its own.

This acid possesses a potential of modulating lipid metabolism.

If you have a history of blood sugar swings, you’re prediabetic, diabetic or taking medications that alter insulin’s effects, GC might make your blood sugar drop dangerously low.

HCA is naturally bound to the calcium within Garcinia cambogia. This reduces bioavailability by at least 50%. This is thought to be the reason why many early studies on HCA failed to produce significant weight loss results.

— Third, we can conclude that, based on at least three separate studies, HCA is most effective when bound with salt, creating HCA-SX. HCA-SX has been clinically shown to promote weight loss, better metabolism, and reduced appetite.

— Fourth, we can conclude that more research needs to be done on Garcinia cambogia before any of these benefits can be definitively proven true. The early evidence of favor of Garcinia cambogia is positive. In several studies, participants have lost a significant amount of weight while taking Garcinia cambogia extract while also experiencing powerful appetite suppression effects.

The good news is that the medical community is actively researching Garcinia cambogia. We should know more about this unique tropical plant in the near future.

Why Garcinia Cambogia Supplements Can Be Dangerous

Garcinia cambogia supplements can actually be dangerous. Today, there are hundreds of shady internet companies selling Garcinia cambogia extract online. The vast majority of these products are totally unregulated and have not been approved by any regulatory body in the world – like the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

One of the problems with the FDA is that it regulates foods and drugs. For some bizarre reason, the FDA has decided that “supplements” are neither foods nor drugs, so it chooses to ignore the supplement industry.

That’s why Americans can purchase virtually any supplement they want online. That’s also why buying supplements online can be so dangerous.

Garcinia cambogia supplements, in many cases, contain very little Garcinia cambogia. Instead, they contain trace amounts of G. cambogia extract along with high levels of caffeine and other filler ingredients.

Ultimately, pure Garcinia cambogia extract has demonstrated some surprising benefits in clinical testing. However, you need to be careful where you buy from and which manufacturers you work with.

It’s All About How You Take It

The information listed above isn’t designed to scare you away from Garcinia cambogia. It’s meant to educate you about one central concept:

The effectiveness of Garcinia cambogia depends entirely on how you take it.

In all of the successful clinical tests on Garcinia cambogia extract (HCA), participants were instructed to exercise and eat a healthy diet while restricting their caloric intake. Both the placebo groups and HCA groups in these studies lost weight, but the HCA groups consistently lost more weight and experienced powerful appetite suppression along with other health benefits.

This has led many to conclude that Garcinia cambogia is a powerful weight loss and appetite suppression tool, but it works especially well if you’re using Garcinia cambogia to complement an existing diet or exercise routine.

Will Garcinia cambogia help you lose weight without diet or exercise? Probably not.

But if you maintain a healthy diet and take the recommended dose of Garcinia cambogia per day, you may be able to lose more weight than someone who is eating the same diet and maintains the same exercise routine as you – at least according to current clinical studies.

How to Use Garcinia Cambogia

If you’re taking Garcinia cambogia for its weight loss benefits and appetite suppression effects, it’s recommended you find a Garcinia cambogia supplement with at least 50% hydroxycitric acid (HCA).

Typically, Garcinia cambogia comes in capsule form. When taking Garcinia cambogia capsules, you should take the capsules 30 to 60 minutes before each meal with a glass of water. The recommended dose is between 500mg to 1000mg, so you may need to take multiple capsules.

You should not eat or drink anything for 15 minutes after taking Garcinia cambogia in capsule form. This enhances bioavailability.

Repeat the above dose before every meal of the day.

You can also find Garcinia cambogia in liquid form. If you’re taking Garcinia cambogia as a liquid, you should place one serving under your tongue 10 minutes prior to eating a meal. Most Garcinia cambogia liquid supplements consider one serving to be 1ml, which works out to about 20 drops.

Just like with the capsule form, you should not eat or drink anything for 15 minutes after ingesting Garcinia cambogia in order to enhance bioavailability. You should also repeat the above dose before every meal of the day.

Garcinia Cambogia Side Effects

In clinical studies, Garcinia cambogia has proven to be a safe, well-tolerated oral supplement. Patients have exhibited no serious effects when taking Garcinia cambogia for up to 12 continuous weeks (which is the maximum length of studies performed so far).

Participants have reported some minor side effects from Garcinia cambogia, including nausea, digestive tract discomfort, and headaches.

If you’re experiencing painful side effects after ingesting Garcinia cambogia, then it’s probably not Garcinia cambogia that’s causing the problems.

Here we knew potential patients of the role model of there complex carbohydrates for post-settlement excess, Chrysophrys auratus, in New Arkansas.

Instead, it’s the shady, low-quality pharmaceutical companies adding dangerous filler ingredients to their formulations.

Conclusion: Is Garcinia Cambogia Right for You?

Garcinia cambogia has an unfair reputation as a dietary supplement “scam”.

Unfortunately, that reputation comes from low-quality Garcinia cambogia extract manufacturers, many of which try to pass off dangerous caffeine-based formulations as some type of Garcinia cambogia extract.

In clinical settings, Garcinia cambogia has proven to be an effective weight loss and appetite suppression tool in at least three major studies. These studies relied on the active ingredient within Garcinia cambogia, hydroxycitric acid (HCA).

When you buy Garcinia cambogia extract supplements, pick a supplement with at least 50% HCA content. Buy from trusted manufacturers and trusted online sources.

Ultimately, the best Garcinia cambogia results have come from combining the supplement with diet and exercise.

Garcinia cambogia is not a miracle pill that will help you lose weight while eating pizza on the couch all day.

But when taken properly and intelligently, Garcinia cambogia and HCA can lead to some surprising weight loss results.

1. Heymsfield SB, et al. Garcinia cambogia (hydroxycitric acid) as a potential antiobesity agent: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 1998 Nov 11;280(18):1596-600.

2. Preuss HG, et al. Efficacy of a novel, natural extract of (-)-hydroxycitric acid (HCA-SX) and a combination of HCA-SX, niacin-bound chromium and Gymnema sylvestre extract in weight management in human volunteers: a pilot study. Nutrition Research. 2004 Jan; 24(1); 45-58

3. Preuss, HG, et al., Effects of a natural extract of (-)-hydroxycitric acid (CHA-SX) and a combination of HCA-SX plus niacin-bound chromium and Gymnema sylvestre extract on weight loss. Diabetes Obes Metab. 2004 May; 6(3): 171-80.

8 Tips for Losing Weight After Pregnancy

Load Up on 'Super Foods', Find Time to Exercise, Consider Breastfeeding to Help Shed Excess Pounds

WebMD archives content after 2 years to ensure our readers can easily find the most timely content.

">From the WebMD Archives

Now that your new baby is here, you have a lot to think about: when to feed her, what to do if she cries -- and how to get rid of those extra pounds you packed on during your pregnancy.

If you started out at a normal weight and gained the 25-35 pounds your doctor probably recommended, it shouldn't take you more than a couple of months to get back to your pre-pregnancy weight if you watch what you eat and exercise.

If, on the other hand, you were overweight before your pregnancy or you put on more weight than your doctor advised, it could take much longer -- up to a year -- to get the weight off. Any baby weight you don't take off could stick with you for a long time.

"It's very critical that you do get the weight off, because if you don't it has been associated with overweight and obesity 15 to 20 years later in life," says Debra Krummel, PhD, RD, endowed professor in the University of Cincinnati department of nutrition.

And although every new mom is eager to look like her old self again, one of the most important things to remember is to be patient with yourself. Your favorite celebrity might have gone straight from the delivery room into her size 0 jeans, but she may not have done it in a way that was good for her body.

"All the magazines ask, 'How did she do it?' The more important question is, 'Why did she do it?'" says Melinda Johnson, MS, RD, registered dietitian and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association (ADA). "They do this with very, very strict diets, and a lot of them do it by getting back into activity before their body is really ready for it."

Johnson advocates a more gradual approach to weight loss. "The number one thing new mothers have to have is a certain amount of patience with their body," she says. "It took nine months to get there. It should take at least that long to get back to their fighting weight."

With that in mind, here are some tips to help you lose weight after pregnancy and fit back into your old jeans -- whatever their size.

It may sound strange, but going on an official "diet" could derail your post-pregnancy weight loss goals. Feeling deprived of your favorite foods while you're already stressed out by your new role as mom could actually cause you to gain weight, Johnson says.

"If you go back to eating healthy and eating for your hunger, most women find that the weight comes off pretty naturally," she says.

Instead of dieting, she recommends eating a well-balanced variety of foods. Keep different snacks in the house to keep you from feeling hungry and give you energy throughout the day. Apple slices, carrot sticks, and wheat crackers are all good for noshing.

No matter how much you want to lose weight, try not to dip below 1,800 calories a day, particularly if you are breastfeeding.

Results may vary and weight loss advertising may not suggest that these products alone are effective for weight loss without acknowledging the importance of diet, exercise and restriction of caloric intake in any weight loss program.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's MyPyramid site can help you design a personalized eating plan based on your age, activity level, and weight loss goals. The site even has a special section for breastfeeding moms.

Load up on "super foods."

When you're a new mother, your body needs maximum nutrition, especially if you're nursing. Choose foods that are heavy in the nutrients you need and light in calories and fat.

Fish is one of these "super foods" because it's packed with DHA, an essential omega-3 fatty acid that helps your newborn develop a healthy brain and nervous system. The best sources of DHA are cold-water fish such as salmon, sardines, and tuna (stick to canned light tuna because albacore tends to be high in mercury).

Milk and yogurt are also super foods because they're high in the calcium you need to keep your bones strong. And don't forget the protein. Lean meat, chicken, and beans are low in fat and high in protein and fiber. They're good for you, and they'll keep you feeling full for longer.

Breastfeed.

Whether breastfeeding can actually help you lose weight is still up in the air -- some studies find that breastfeeding exclusively can help you return to your pre-baby weight faster, while others find no difference in weight loss between women who breastfeed and those who bottle feed.

What is for sure is that breastfeeding is good for your baby, boosting immunity and providing a number of other important health benefits. And nursing exclusively lets you add about an extra 300 calories a day to your diet (you can add slightly more calories if you have a really big eater or twins). Just make sure that if you do breastfeed, you don't use it as an excuse to eat whatever you want.

Drinking plenty of water throughout the day prevents you from getting dehydrated. It also fills you up so that you don't eat as much, and some research has found that it may speed up your metabolism.

Whether you need the often-recommended eight glasses a day isn't certain, so Johnson recommends using the color of your urine and how often you need to go to the bathroom as guides. If you're drinking enough fluids, your urine should be relatively clear, and you should be going to the bathroom about every three to four hours.

Diet is important, but it's only one part of your post-pregnancy weight loss plan. You also need to incorporate aerobic and strength training exercises after pregnancy to burn calories and keep your muscles and bones strong. "Exercise, beyond helping you lose weight, provides so many benefits to a new mom," Johnson says. "It helps with depression, it helps with the sleep issue . it helps in relieving stress -- and having a new baby in the house can definitely be stressful."

You don't have to hit the gym to get back in shape after pregnancy -- taking a brisk walk with your baby in the stroller is enough to get your heart pumping and muscles working. "You want to shoot for at least 150 minutes a week," says James M. Pivarnik, PhD, FACSM, professor of kinesiology and epidemiology at Michigan State University and president-elect of the American College of Sports Medicine. With a new baby, finding 30 minutes in a row might be impossible, so Pivarnik suggests breaking up the time into 10-minute increments. Then try to work your way up to 20- or 30-minute sessions.

Lugging around a baby all day is itself a workout, but you still need to add some strength training. Use light weights -- or even a couple of soup cans -- as resistance. Many health clubs and community centers offer "mommy and me" classes that will let you incorporate your baby into your workout routine. But before you start any exercise program, get your doctor's approval, especially if you had a C-section.

Get some sleep.

It may seem impossible to get a full eight hours of sleep when you have a baby summoning you like clockwork throughout the night, but being sleep deprived could make it harder for you to shed the baby weight. In one study, new moms who slept five hours or less a night were more likely to hold onto their extra pregnancy weight than women who slept seven hours. When you're tired, your body releases cortisol and other stress hormones that can promote weight gain. "Also when you're exhausted, you don't feel like taking good care of yourself," Johnson says. "You're less likely to choose healthy food. You're more likely to grab something through a drive-through. You're also less likely to get physical activity."

Your friends or family members may have told you to "sleep when your baby sleeps," and that's good advice. Catch as many naps as you can during the day and go to bed early -- at least until your baby starts sleeping through the night.

Ask for help.

If you're struggling to lose the weight, enlist the help of your doctor and a dietitian. The dietitian can help you design an eating plan that will let you lose weight safely and effectively, while the doctor can guide you on how much weight you need to lose and when you can start exercising.

Melinda Johnson, MS, RD, spokeswoman, American Dietetic Association.

Gunderson, E.

Better studies are needed to find out if HCA really helps people lose a lot of weight and keep it off.

American Journal of Epidemiology, 2008; vol 167: pp 178-187.

Boschmann, M. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, 2003; vol 88: pp 6015-6019.

Hatsu, I. International Breastfeeding Journal, 2008, vol 3.

Pediatrics, 2005; vol 115: pp 496-506.

James Pivarnik, PhD, FACSM, professor of kinesiology and epidemiology, Michigan State University; president-elect, American College of Sports Medicine.

Haiek, L. The Journal of the American Board of Family Practice, 2001; vol 14: pp 85-94.

Debra Krummel, PhD, RD, endowed professor, University of Cincinnati department of nutrition.

What Will Happen if I Only Eat Fruits & Vegetables for 2 Weeks?

Vegetables and fruits are typically low in calories and filled with essential nutrients, making them an essential part of any healthy diet. Getting more of these nutritious foods may help lower your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, digestive problems, vision problems and cancer. They don't supply all of the essential nutrients, however, so it isn't a good idea to eat only fruits and vegetables for any significant amount of time. Check with your doctor before attempting such a diet to make sure it would be safe for you. Although a two-week all fruit and vegetable diet might not result in long-term consequences, the longer you follow this type of diet, the more likely you'll be to experience nutrient deficiencies.

Video of the Day

Calorie Considerations for a Two-Week Fruit & Veggie Diet

A diet consisting of just fruits and vegetables is probably going to be low in calories overall. Diets that are too low in calories, including those under 1,200 calories per day for women and those under 1,800 calories per day for men, can slow your metabolism and if followed long-term, can increase your risk for heart problems, osteoporosis and other health conditions. If you're interested in trying this type of diet to lose weight, keep in mind that a slower metabolism also makes weight loss more difficult. Not getting enough calories can also cause headaches, dizziness, fatigue, emotional issues and fainting.

Increased Fiber From Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are among the best sources of fiber, so if you only eat these foods, you're probably going to be greatly increasing your dietary fiber. If you make a sudden switch from your regular diet to one consisting of just fruits and vegetables, the sudden increase in fiber will be difficult for your body to handle and may leave you suffering from diarrhea and gas. It's better to gradually increase your fiber intake. Be sure to drink plenty of water on this type of diet, as this will help minimize the gas and constipation caused by the higher amounts of fiber it contains. Very high amounts of fiber can also interfere with the absorption of some nutrients and interact with certain medications, so check with your doctor before suddenly adding a lot more fiber to your diet.

Potential Long-Term Consequences

Don't follow a fruit-and-vegetable-only diet for a long time. While a two-week diet of this type isn't likely to cause serious deficiency symptoms, fruits and vegetables don't contain significant amounts of protein, essential omega-3 and omega-6 fats, vitamin D, B-vitamins, zinc, iron, calcium, chromium, copper, iodine, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorus or selenium. You need to get enough of the essential fats to maintain proper brain, eye and skin health and keep your hormones at the proper levels.

Not getting enough protein, even for a short time, can have serious consequences. A protein deficiency may cause muscle loss, make it harder for wounds to heal and make you more likely to get sick. It may also trigger mental confusion, digestive issues and skin and hair problems. Other nutrient deficiencies from an all-vegetable diet can affect you skin, hair, bones, hormone levels and blood.

A Well-Balanced Diet

A diet of fruits and vegetables alone is too restrictive to provide all of the nutrients you need, but if you're wanting to avoid animal proteins, it's possible to get these nutrients from a well-planned vegetarian or vegan diet. Depending on the exact content of your diet, you might require vitamin B-12 supplements and perhaps vitamin D supplements as well, depending on where you live and how much time you spend in the sun. Eating eggs and dairy products, as some vegetarians do, would add complete protein and seafood would provide protein as well as omega-3 fats.

No matter what diet you follow, fruits and vegetables are an important source of vitamins, minerals, fiber and plant phytochemicals. The USDA recommends adults consume 1 1/2 to 2 cups of fruit per day and 2 to 3 cups of vegetables each day for good health.