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Buddhist Diet

Buddhist Diet

Can you reach nirvana through the food you eat?

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Inspired by the spiritual practices of the Buddha, the Buddhist Diet is a way of eating that attempts to support the Buddhist practice of non-violence, or ahimsa.

This particular kind of vegetarian East Asian cuisine is consumed in slightly different styles all over the world, but primarily in countries with large Buddhist populations like China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan and Singapore.

In general, The Buddhist Diet avoids meat, while some allow the consumption of certain meats. Some sub-sects of the Buddhist Diet restrict the consumption of many vegetables like root vegetables because the cultivation of them kills the plant itself. Other sects avoid eating plants that contain a strong odor such as onions, garlic, leeks or any member of the allium family.

All forms of the Buddhist Diet are followed to pay homage to the Buddha and to ensure that the individual is following the path toward enlightenment.

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  • A vegetarian diet has been linked to broad health benefits
  • Vegetarian diets are earth- and animal-friendly
  • There is great variety in the kinds of Buddhist diets
  • Must have a strong conviction in spiritual beliefs
  • Must eat a variety of foods in order to consume the proper balance of nutrients

The Buddhist Diet is a vegetarian diet that is comprised of eating certain vegetables, fruits, grains, soy, seitan or wheat gluten, and other faux meat sources.

Dishes are typically flavored with a variety of seasonings and spices and since there are no restrictions on how dishes can be prepared, vegetables, grains and non-meat protein sources can be consumed raw, baked, in soups, stir-fries, casseroles, stews and numerous other ways.

For those sects of Buddhists that can't consume root vegetables, foods like potatoes, beets, carrots, onions and parsnips are avoided. In addition, for those that abstain from eating strong-smelling vegetables, onions, shallots, garlic, leeks and even the spice coriander are not consumed.


There are no specific exercise recommendations.


The Buddhist Diet is an umbrella term for a variety of styles of eating followed by Buddhists throughout the world. While most of the individuals following the Buddhist Diet adhere to a vegetarian way of eating, some eat certain kinds of meat while others avoid specific kinds of vegetables.

Overall, when a vegetarian diet is followed correctly, it can be extremely healthy and can help to lower risk of certain disease and cancers.

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Great way to go veggie!

posted Oct 18th, 2011 2:43 pm


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