plant-based diet for heart health

Eating a plant-based diet not only benefits heart health, but it benefits your overall health.

There are two different types of plant-based diets, vegetarian and vegan. Vegetarian diets focus on not eating different types of animal foods, such as meat, poultry, and/or fish. While vegan diets restrict eating any form of meat or animal products, which includes foods like dairy and eggs. Eating a plant-based diet has been linked to lowering the risk of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

In a recent study, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, researchers examined whether eating a plant-based diet is associated with lowering the risk of developing heart disease, the potential of dying from heart disease, and other types of disease mortality in the U.S. The researchers used data collected from over 10,000 men and women between the ages of 45-64, who were followed from 1987 to 2016. The participants were required to keep a food journal and record how many times they consumed food and beverages.

The results revealed that participants whose diets were more plant-based had a 16% lower chance of having a stroke, heart attack, or heart failure. The researchers also found that eating a plant-based diet reduced the risk of dying from heart disease by 32%, and the risk of dying from any other cause also decreased by 25%. The results of this study suggest that eating a healthy diet, one that’s rich in fiber, plant-based, and low in animal products is beneficial not only to heart health but also to overall health.

Written by Nicole A. Brown, MS

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References:

Kim, H., Caulfield, L. E., Garcia-Larsen,V., Steffen, L.M., Coresh, J., Rebholz, C.M. (2019). Plant-Based Diets are associated with a lower risk of indicent cardiovascular disease, cardiovascular disease mortality, and all-cause mortality in a general population of middle-aged adults. Journal of the American Heart Association. 

Spitz, D. (2019). Eating more plant-based foods may be linked to better heart health. Retrieved from: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-08/aha-emp080219.php

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