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What are Hindu dietary restrictions?

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Quick Answer

Food and drink that the Hindus avoid include meat, eggs, poultry, fish, caffeine, alcohol and very spicy foods, and strict Hindus also do not eat mushrooms, onions, leeks and garlic. Not all Hindus avoid meat, but most of them try to avoid beef. The Hindu faith promotes a number of dietary practices arising from the belief of respecting God's creation and living in peace with nature.

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Full Answer

Hinduism is regarded as the oldest religion in the world and the third-largest religion. According to Hindu beliefs, the food a person eats determines his or her mental and physical state. It is believed that eating pure foods helps people to be clean and natural. Hindus believe that eating intoxicating and animal food may cause a person to develop animal qualities. Killing animals for food is considered a bad practice, and anyone involved in it may face negative consequences.

In Hindu, the name of the cow is "aghnaya," which refers to "not to be killed." Cow products including milk, dung, ghee, urine and curd are used during worship. This is one particular reason Hindus avoid eating beef. Pork and beef are the most strictly forbidden to eat, but some Hindus do eat meat from other animals.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Which foods are restricted among Hindus?

    A:

    The dietary restrictions of Hindus vary among practitioners: nearly all abstain from eating beef, and some follow a predominantly vegetarian diet, while others, such as Shaktas, consume meat, provided it comes from animals sacrificed in rituals. Among Hindus, Shaivites and Shaktas have the most lenient diets and may include meat products in their meals, while more conservative Hindu branches such as Vaishna abide by theological rules that dictate permissible and impermissible foods.

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  • Q:

    Why do Hindus not eat meat?

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    Many Hindus do not eat meat because it is considered tamasic, meaning influenced by ignorance. Some Hindu scriptures do not sanction meat, poultry, fish or eggs, although this is open to interpretation, as other scriptures refer to meals involving meat.

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    What are examples of "grow" foods?

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    Some examples of grow foods are meat, poultry, fish, seafood, milk and dairy products, eggs, nuts and beans. Grow foods aid the body in building and repairing body tissues and make muscles stronger. Grow foods form part of a curriculum developed for teaching preschoolers healthy eating and nutrition .

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    What foods are high in vitamin B12?

    A:

    According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the best food sources for B12 are beef liver and clams, followed by fish, meat, poultry, eggs and milk. Vitamin B12 can only be found naturally in animal foods and products.

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