Definitions of vegetarian diets
There is a wide variation of types of vegetarianism, which may be followed for ethical, sustainability, health, or religious reasons. There are an estimated 6-8 million vegetarians in the USA, and 50% will eat vegetarian sometimes, often, or always when eating out (VRG/Harris Interactive 2008).
Here are the types of vegetarian diets, from most restrictive to least restrictive.
Fruitarian (fruit only diet)
There are a few different definitions of fruitarianism. Some fruitarians will eat only fruit, possibly only fruit that has fallen from the plant. Others will eat only fruits, nuts, and seeds. And others will eat any part of a plant that will not harm the plant if removed, so they may include some leaves. Raw fruitarians will only eat raw fruits.
Raw vegans eat only raw foods that are not animal products (see Vegan below). They define raw foods as those that have not been cooked above 104 to 118 degrees Fahrenheit (40-48 degrees centigrade/Celsius) – the temperature varies among the raw food community.
Vegan (plant based diet)
Vegans will not eat animal products. Usually this includes meat, poultry, fish/seafood, and anything obtained from animals such as milk products and eggs. Honey is often not eaten. The vegan diet is also known as a plant-based diet, especially when it’s being followed for health rather than ethical reasons.
Raw vegetarians may eat raw milk products in addition to vegetables. A few may eat raw eggs. They will not eat cooked/heated produce, or cooked/heated milk products, eggs, meat, poultry, or fish/seafood. They define raw foods as those that have not been cooked above 104 to 118 degrees Fahrenheit (40-48 degrees centigrade/Celsius) – the temperature varies among the raw food community.
Lacto-vegetarians will not eat meat, poultry, fish/seafood, or eggs. The lacto-vegetarian diet includes milk and milk products.
Ovo-lacto-vegetarian (also known as lacto-ovo-vegetarian)
Ovo-lacto-vegetarians will not eat meat, poultry, or fish/seafood. They will eat eggs, milk, and milk products.
Pescetarian (also known as pesco vegetarian or pescatarian vegetarian)
Pescetarians will not eat meat or poultry. They will eat fish/seafood. The pescetarian diet may or may not eat eggs, milk, and milk products. Other spellings include pescatarian and pescotarian
Pollo-pescetarians will not eat meat. They will eat poultry and fish/seafood. They will usually eat eggs, milk, and milk products.
Flexitarian (also known as semi-vegetarian)
Flexitarians will often eat meals with little or no meat, poultry or fish/seafood. They do not consider animal protein to be central to meals.