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Table 1 Characteristics of a vegetarian diet (modified according to Mensink et al. [26] and Kersting [16])

From: Vegetarian diets in childhood and adolescence

Type of dietExcluded food groupsReduced nutrient intake
Lacto-ovo-vegetarianMeat, fish productsMeat: vitamin B12, animal protein, iron, zinc (high bioavailability)
Fish: iodine, omega-3 fatty acid, e.g. DHA
Lacto-vegetarianMeat, fish products, eggsSame as above
Eggs: animal protein, vitamin D and A
Ovo-vegetarianMeat, fish products, milk and milk productsSame as above
Milk: animal protein, calcium, iodine, vitamin B12, B2, D, A
Pesco-vegetarianMeat productsSame as above but with fish
Flexitarian (generally vegetarian)Meat and fish products, occasional consumption of small portionsSame as above
Only slight reduction in nutrients
VeganAll animal-based products (meat, fish, milk, eggs, honey)Same as above
In addition, primarily vitamin B12
Raw vegansAll animal-based products, certain plants, cooked foodsSame as above
In addition, calories and fat
  1. DHA docosahexaenoic acid