The flexible vegetarian diet or flexitarian diet is about eating more plant and less everything else. The diet is based around the consumption of proteins derived from plant sources and adaptogens — non-toxic plants that help the body resist stressors — like ashwagandha, turmeric and reishi mushrooms.
It’s a favorite among those who want to practice a bit of vegan-vegetarian living but still enjoy animal products like meat or fish once in awhile. It’s also a popular diet for its lack of calorie counting. Ranked as number 3 in best diets overall, the flexitarian diet gets a thumbs up from health experts for its healthy, straightforward eating style, which also ranks in the 2 position for the best diets for diabetes.
The diet is a flexible alternative to being a vegetarian. So while flexitarian followers enjoy vegetarian staples such as tofu, quinoa and produce, no foods are strictly forbidden, but guides as to how much (or how little) meat to consume.
In the beginning, for example, flexitarians should make a point of eating at least six meatless meals per week, while later in a more “advanced” stage, flexitarians should aim for at least 15 meatless meals per week.
Some health benefits to the flexitarian diet include reduced blood pressure and body weight, improved metabolic health and a risk reduction of developing type 2 diabetes.