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A semi-vegetarian or flexitarian12 diet is one that is plant-based with the occasional inclusion of meat products.34567 In 2003, the American Dialect Society voted flexitarian as the year's most useful word and defined it as "a vegetarian who occasionally eats meat".8 In 2012, the term was listed for the first time in the mainstream Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary.9

Difference between similar terms

Vegetarianism is the practice of abstaining from the consumption of meat. Common reasons for adopting a flexitarian diet may be health, environment (see environmental vegetarianism) or reduction of resource consumption (see economic vegetarianism), which are also arguments in favor of adopting a fully vegetarian diet. While flexitarians may view the flexitarian diet as occasional indulgences,10 vegetarians may strongly resent the term and view it as cheating or as a moral lapse.11 Other than flexitarian diets that may include any type of meat, semi-vegetarianism includes:

  • Pollo-pescetarians: They eat fish and poultry, but not meat from mammalscitation needed


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  3. ^ Langley-Evans, Simon (2009). Nutrition: A Lifespan Approach. Wiley. p. 172. "There are many forms of vegetarian diet from the semi-vegetarian (consumes meat infrequently)..." 
  4. ^ Nemours Foundation/TeensHealth [1] Excerpt: "Some people consider themselves semi-vegetarians and eat fish and maybe a small amount of poultry as part of a diet."
  5. ^ "Semi-Vegetarian - Vegetarianism". Medicine Online. "semi-vegetarian: mostly follows a vegetarian diet but eats meat, poultry and fish occasionally" 
  6. ^ Havala Hobbs, Suzanne. Living Vegetarian for Dummies. For Dummies. p. 14. "A semi-vegetarian is someone who's cutting back on his intake of meat in general" 
  7. ^ Koletzko, Berthold (2008). Pediatric Nutrition in Practice. Karger. p. 130. "The wide spectrum of vegetarian diets ranges from avoidance of red meat only ('semi-vegetarianism')..." 
  8. ^ "2003 Words of the Year". American Dialect Society. 2007-01-13. Retrieved 2007-12-03. 
  9. ^ Italie, Leanne. "F-bomb makes it into mainstream dictionary". The Washington Times. Retrieved 15 August 2012. 
  10. ^ "Are you a 'flexitarian?'". nbcnews. 
  11. ^ "Flexitarianism: isn't it just vegetarianism with cheating?". Guardian. 
  12. ^ Preedy, Victor R.; Burrow, Gerard N.; Watson, Ronald (2009-02-09). Comprehensive Handbook of Iodine: Nutritional, Biochemical, Pathological and Therapeutic Aspects. Academic Press. p. 523. ISBN 978-0-12-374135-6. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  13. ^ Hayes, Dayle; Laudan, Rachel (September 2008). Food and Nutrition / Editorial Advisers, Dayle Hayes, Rachel Laudan. Marshall Cavendish. p. 1058. ISBN 978-0-7614-7827-0. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 
  14. ^ Kushi, Michio; Blauer, Stephen (2004-03-08). The macrobiotic way: the complete macrobiotic lifestyle book. Penguin. p. 83. ISBN 978-1-58333-180-4. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 

Further reading

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