A fruitarian diet is a more restrictive diet than vegan diet. In vegan diet, the menu plan consists of any plant food products. In fruitarian diet, not all plant foods are included. The menu plan is comprised of only fruits, berries, and leaf vegetables, and not of legumes (e.g. beans, lentils, peas, and peanuts), tubers (e.g. potatoes, cassava, taro and yams), grains, and other plant parts (e.g. buds, rhizomes, bulbs, and sprouts) that could essentially harm the plant when consumed. Thus, those who follow this type of diet (referred to as fruitarian) would eat plant parts that would naturally fall or detach from the plant. In general, their diet includes raw fruits, dried fruits, olive oil, and other fruit-based food products. Their preference to eat select plant parts is motivated by a philosophy of not wanting to harm or deprive plants of life. Thus, they would also abstain from eating seeds, which are a potential source of a new plant life. Nevertheless, there are those who include seeds in their diet and still call it a fruitarian diet.
Since fruitarian diet urges regular consumption of fruits, this type of diet is expected to be high in fiber, vitamin C, sugars, and phytochemicals. Regular intake of fruits is associated with decreased risks of cancer, stroke, Alzheimer's disease, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. However, following a fruitarian diet is not recommended for prolonged periods. It may also be detrimental to the growth and development of children and teens since it is lacking in food providing important nutrients, such as calcium, protein, iron, zinc, and B vitamins.
Word origin: fruit + -arian, from Latin –ārius (associated with)