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    • Randy Graham

    • March 20, 2013 in Columnists

    Vegetarians defined


    Chef Randy prepping dinner . . .

    Vegetarians are sometimes referred to as herbivores, or plant eating animals, as opposed to omnivores, which are animals that eat both plants and animal matter. The distinction does not end there, however. Did you know there are various types of vegetarians?

    A lacto-ovo vegetarian eats just about anything that is not meat or fish. The word lacto is derived from the Latin word for milk. So lacto-ovo vegetarian recipes with cow’s milk, goat’s milk, or sheep’s milk are fair game (please pardon the pun) for vegetarians. Examples of vegetarian products made from milk include cheese, yogurt, kefir, sour cream, ice cream, puddings, and chocolate to name a few. Ovo is derived from the Latin word ovum meaning egg. Recipes that include eggs are OK for lacto-ovo vegetarians.

    A vegan is one whose diet does not include any animal or animal-derived products at all. Dairy products, although considered vegetarian, derive from animals so dairy is out if your vegetarian is a vegan. Eggs derive from animals so eggs are out too. Many vegans also avoid the use of all products tested on animals, as well as animal-derived non-food products, such as leather, fur, and wool.

    Fruitarians are a sub-set of vegans. They follow a diet that includes fruits, nuts, and seeds, without animal products, vegetables, and grains.

    Flexitarian is a term recently coined to describe a vegetarian who occasionally eats meat.

    Demi-Vegetarians don’t eat red meat or poultry but do eat fish, eggs, vegetarian cheese, and some milk-based products.

    Pollotarians are vegetarians that eat chicken and other poultry such as duck, goose, turkey, and sometimes fish. They just don’t eat meat from mammals. I guess turduckens are fair game for them.

    A Pescetarian is a vegetarian who may also consume fish. Pescetarians abstain from eating all meat and animal flesh with the exception of fish.

    A Level 5 Vegan is a term used on the television show, The Simpsons, and means, “I don’t eat anything that casts a shadow.” This has nothing to do with vegetarianism… just thought I’d throw it in the mix.

    Which one am I? I am a lacto-ovo vegetarian. My recipes are mainly lacto-ovo but many are vegan and gluten-free. They are not fancy. They feature good, home-style cooking, with a trend toward comfort food.

    See Chef Randy’s food blog for more recipes at 


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