Skip Nav
Health News
According to the Experts, These Are the 15 Safest Sunscreens
Fitness Gear
This Activewear May Appear Expensive, but It's All Under $28 and From Forever 21
We've Found Your Next Workout

Are You a Flexitarian?

Do you consider yourself a vegetarian with carnivorous benefits? Then you just might be a flexitarian.
Although this term sounds bizarre, it does make a bit more sense than using the oxymoronic term meat eating vegetarian. Although the word is new to me, it was actually coined by a Texas restaurateur to describe the food served up at her cafe as "flexitarian." You could also think of the terms as meaning semi-vegetarian.

The flexitarian diet is mainly plant based like a vegetarian diet, but with only a handful of one's weekly meals containing meat. The American Dietetic Association believes a quarter of Americans fit this relatively new category since they consume meatless meals at least four days a week. This nutritional philosophy makes great sense to me and I admit I find myself eating less and less meat weekly. By limiting meat consumption to just three days a week, you know for a hit of lean protein, and centering meals around fruits, veggies and grains, you're probably going to eat the recommended 5 to 7 servings of fruits and veggies a day.

So, do you consider yourself a flexitarian? Tell me in the comment section below.


Join The Conversation
fashionhore fashionhore 9 years
I would say that I am currently a flexitarian simply because I am finding that the more meat (of any sort) I eat, the worse I feel. But diary foods do not bother me. So I am simply just not eating as much meat as I can handle. My body still does let me know though when I need to eat a little meat, and I do!
DecemberBaby DecemberBaby 9 years
I would definitely say I'm a flexitarian. I don't eat red meat at all but I do eat chicken! I love this term!
Arrack Arrack 9 years
I love it! I was a vegetarian for 5 years but had to give it up since my health deteriorated (I had virtually no immune system in the end, had a stomach flue five times the last years plus bouts of flue every month or so). I know it was due to my laziness when it came to eating right and the student budget I was on, but I dropped the no-meat-stance and felt great. I've never been a huge meat fan, however, so when I moved in with my bf we decided we would try to eat healthy and mostly vegetarian, with occasional meat thrown in here and there. It's worked wonderfully for us! There are the obvious health benefits and it also helps me sleep a bit easier knowing it's one more thing I can do for the already over-burdened environment. :)
Vampyre Vampyre 9 years
I find all these labels ridiculous. Why must people come up with a fancy name for everything? It's quite simply, vegetarian, you don't eat meat, omnivore, you eat meat and vegies. Simple.
dejavu cuz i was just thinkin about what to call myself since i just started dieting again and my meals consist of greens...greens....greens...a lil bit of meat...then more greens. so i guess im a flexitarian =)
almostloli almostloli 9 years
i think i am one, most of the days in a week i only eat fruits and vegs, usually during weekends i let myself eat anything i want, but i cut back food with hi-cals and meat on weekdays
blackjade blackjade 9 years
The term is omnivore. It doesn't matter how often you eat meat. I eat mostly seafood and have red meat or poltury once a week - maybe. But it's not something new. People have been eating like this since forever because meat used to be something that was only had of special occasions.
CandyCane CandyCane 9 years
Wow! I didn't know that there was a name for it so I guess I am in the "Flexitarian" category cause I only eat meat 2 to 3 times a week, my mother and sister make fun of me casue i use Vegetarian and I eat meat here and there.
Firesheep Firesheep 9 years
I'm happy there is a new term for this. My parents used to say I was born a vegeterian because I hardly eat any meat. but I'm not totally vegetarian, and I like to eat meat once in a while, so this suites perfect for me. I've tried going off meat completely a while back, but my body demanded it, and I started fainting a lot, so I don't think it completely health, for me, to be vegetarian. The flexitarian way of living is right for me.
LVC LVC 9 years
Keep in mind that this word was made up by one person. She was probably looking to give the perception of her being a health concious person in hopes of driving business. Silly term, but whenever someone can find a creative way to STOP eating meat, I'm all for it. The less cunsumption of meat & meat products, and the less spending on factory farms...THE BETTER!!! Ive been vegetarian since I was 15 years. I am healthy, happy, and so is my healthy vegetarian daughter. You either eat meat (***which DOES include poultry and fish...come on now***) or you dont.
True-Song True-Song 9 years
It seems like there should be a label for this kind of eater. I'm not crazy about "flexitarian," but I'm baffled by those who seem insulted by people who want a term for a low-meat diet. I consciously try to avoid meat since I know doing so is good for me, good for the environment, and good for animals. I've progressively cut down over the years, and since I keep a food diary, I know I regularly go weeks without it. To say there's no difference between me and someone who chows down on steak every night seems wrong, like saying someone who eats a cookie isn't really on a diet. I don't call myself a vegetarian or semi-vegetarian. If asked, I say I eat a low-meat diet. I don't see why vegetarians or vegans would find that so horrible.
julieulie julieulie 9 years
I'm sorry, but this is one of the most ridiculous things I have ever heard. You can't be a mostly vegetarian anymore than you can be mostly Caucasian or mostly a certain religion -- it's not to pick and choose. I understand individuals who call themselves vegetarians but still eat fish, since growing up in a Kosher household, fish is not considered to be meat (though I definitely respect individuals who don't consider these people to be vegetarians), but the second you eat chicken or beef or any other land animal, no matter how infrequently, you are, by definition, no longer a vegetarian, and a meat eating vegetarian is about as much of a vegetarian as a Jew for Jesus.
jmast jmast 9 years
Lonewolf, I totally agree, I couldn't have written it better :)
marygrace marygrace 9 years
jennybop- as a vegan, it makes me sad to think that eliminating meat from your deit is something you want to do but feel like you can't. you can get plenty of protein from any sort of veg*n diet. whole grains, tofu, tempeh, seitan, beans, nuts seeds, and dairy or eggs if you're into that, all provide plenty of protein! as long as you are eating a balanced diet, you aren't missing out on anything! and even if you feel like you are a little low on a certain vitamin or mineral (vitamin b12 for example?) you could always take a supplement. you don't need meat to be healthy! you should do some research online about vegan bodybuilders; there are a lot of them, not to mention a lot of other hardcore athletes that are also vegan. you said if it were up to you that you'd still be vegetarian - it IS up to you! don't let such a personal and important decision like eating meat be made for you by someone else. i understand you are trying to respect the information your husband has provided you and i'm not trying to knock him. if he feels like he needs meat in order to keep his weight training performance up to par, that's cool. but if you are grossed out by meat and don't want to eat it, don't feel like you need to! as long as you plan your diet healthfully and carefully, you're better off without it!
jennybop jennybop 9 years
i HATE eating meat. I was vegetarian for 6 years, vegan for almost 2 years, but since getting married, my husband was a body builder and had to have a lot of protein. I ended up giving in because i know i was depriving my body of necessary nutrients that i wasn't getting.. so now i eat meat maybe a few times a week only for health reasons, but if it were up to me, i would still be vegetarian. whenever we get meat from the store, like ground beef, i make him separate it into bags and freeze it because i can't touch raw bloody uncooked meat. It grosses me out. i'm a freakin baby
jessy777 jessy777 9 years
The labeling seems strange but I understand it. I know alot of people, including me, who are vegetarians for health reason I do not think it degrades anything. Eating excessive amounts of meat leads to all sorts of health problems and it is a good thing to decrease the intake for personal and enviromental health. If people feel the need to label themselves then why not. To each their own I say.
tashspice tashspice 9 years
heck no, 100% veg
LoneWolf LoneWolf 9 years
The labeling thing drives me crazy because everyone sounds so superior and pretentious and that's annoying. And I know I'm generalizing here, so no stones please, but damn. I eat they way I eat and don't force my views on people. I have lots of opinions about what goes into my body and how I want to take care of myself, but just because someone doesn't agree with me that something is bad for them doesn't mean that I think I'm better than them. It's a choice. If a person is uninformed, that's one thing. But otherwise, let people eat what they want and stop labeling everything.
Spectra Spectra 9 years
My inlaws call me a vegetarian, even though I'm not. I guess it's because I don't eat a lot of meat. I eat meat probably 3 times a week and the rest of the time, I eat eggs and dairy. I wouldn't call myself "flexitarian" because isn't that what EVERYONE is?? No one eats all meat all the time. I think that's why they call it being an "omnivore", hello.
kerneschick2005 kerneschick2005 9 years
In terms of "meat," I don't eat it. I eat poultry, but only chicken & turkey (pheasant=ew!).
ley ley 9 years
Nah.. I'm too practical to be a vegetarian. i think lean meat is one of the best things to incorporate in a diet
demonkitty18 demonkitty18 9 years
No, you're either a vegetarian or not- you either eat meat or you don't. Many people think I am one bcause i dun eat chicken, beef etc but I do eat shrimps n crabs so I don't think I am. I'm just someone who likes farm animals alot :D
renaimarie renaimarie 9 years
Most people assume that I'm a vegetarian, although I'm not! I eat meat once or twice a month (usually only super lean game meat or turkey though) and I eat tons of seafood, and a little bit of eggs and dairy, although generally only once or twice per week. I hate most red meat, and I feel disgusting if I eat anything that isn't free-range or wild. Luckily I'm a spoiled brat, and my dad is both a commercial fisherman in Alaska, as well as a game hunter, so I get packages of moose, deer, salmon, and halibut fairly often. So, I'm not a vegetarian... I just don't really eat meat!
snapperdoodle snapperdoodle 9 years
I don't think labels matter, really, but how you live your life. I've gone for long periods not eating red meat, not eating any meat, not eating meat, eggs, or milk, and any other combination you can think of. Why do we have to make the word "Vegetarian" some righteous term that you must be worthy of earning the right to use? We're all just trying to do our best for ourselves and the world around us, and that's what's important.
moojibur moojibur 9 years
Uh, you're vegetarian/vegan, or you're not. I've been veg for 22 years (strict vegan for 5 of those). It kills me when I mention I'm a veg and someone asks do you eat chicken or seafood. NO!! Duh. I'm all for folks eating less meat, but sorry, no special name.
From Our Partners
Latest Fitness
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds