We know that eating less meat is good for us – cutting down can curb the risk of heart disease and cancer, help us to lose weight, and it’s even good for the environment. And in spite of the British reputation for hearty, meaty meals – with everything from the traditional Sunday roast to the humble sausage roll bearing witness to the UK’s meat-eating habits – the UK population has actually seen falling rates of meat consumption. Brits now eat 13% less meat than they did in 2007, showing just how keen the UK has become on eating a more balanced diet.
But veggie food still has a bit of a reputation in the UK as being flavourless – calls to cut down on meat bring to mind a diet of lentils and broccoli, not anything that will really get the tastebuds tantalised. But we at Diforti know that that’s just a misconception – the lessons of Italian cuisine show that a vegetarian diet isn’t just healthy and achievable, it can also be exceptionally tasty. We know that the traditional Italian diet, rich with grains, nuts, flavoursome Italian cheeses, fresh vegetables and mouth-watering soups like our classic minestrone, can be both delicious and good for you – so we were happy to learn that Turin has gone further and proclaimed itself Italy’s first vegetarian city.
Turin’s new mayor has embarked on an ambitious program to emphasise the vegetarian and vegan diet in the food habits of the city. Schoolchildren will be taught about animal ethics and the impact of meat consumption on the environment, and “meat-free” days will be introduced once a week.
And with Turin now having 30 exclusively vegan or vegetarian restaurants, there are plenty of tasty options for visitors and residents to choose from.
If you’re looking to try going more vegetarian yourself, eating more Italian is the perfect way to do it. Try introducing a meat-free day for yourself, and you’ll find that there are more than enough vegetarian Italian dishes out there to do so without sacrificing taste. Try using some of our fresh pasta alongside one of our pesto sauces and a little of our tangy parmesan – we find that adding squash adds a tasty rustic flavour. Or go for a delicious tomato risotto, throwing in plenty of pine nuts and olive oil. And if you just want to swap out red meat, our seafood provides an excellent healthy alternative –it really captures the traditional diet of coastal Italy. Or if you’re looking to try the complete vegan diet, it’s always a good idea to exchange butter for olive oil – not only is it better for you, our Italian olive oil is perfect for getting that distinctive taste which makes Italian cuisine so beloved around the world.
So don’t let anyone tell you that going vegetarian means missing out on delicious meal – as we at Diforti know, a vegetarian diet can still preserve all the fantastic tastes that we love about our Italian food. So if you’re feeling health-conscious, try going vegetarian like Italians do, and you’re sure to find that it’s easier and tastier than you expected!