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Health benefits from a plant-based diet
Researchers have now found that switching to a vegan diet reduces the risk of dying from a heart attack or stroke by a third.
The recent study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that a vegan diet can protect against death from a heart attack or stroke. The results of the study were published in the journal of the American Heart Association (JAHA).
Reduced meat consumption improves health
A vegan diet seems to have a positive impact on our overall life expectancy. In their research, the researchers found that a plant-based diet reduced the overall probability of premature death by a quarter. The results of the study suggest that simply reducing the amount of meat consumed contributes to better heart health.
Data from more than 10,000 people were analyzed
The study evaluated data on the food intake of more than 10,000 middle-aged adults in the United States. The participants were medically monitored from 1987 to 2016 and did not suffer from any heart disease at the start of the study. The researchers categorized the eating habits of the participants according to the proportion of plant foods compared to the consumption of animal foods. They found that people who consumed most of the plant foods had a 16 percent lower risk of heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, or other heart conditions. These people were also 32 percent less likely to die from cardiovascular disease. The overall risk of dying prematurely for some reason was also reduced by 25 percent compared to people who consumed the least amounts of plant-based foods.
Make sure you have a healthy and balanced diet
The results underline the importance of focusing on a healthy diet. There may be differences in individual foods, but to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, people should eat more vegetables, nuts, whole grains, fruits, legumes, and fewer animal foods, the researchers report. The results found are fairly in line with previous results on other eating habits, including the hypertension diet or the DASH diet, which emphasizes the same foods, the research group added.
More research is needed
This is one of the first studies to investigate the ratio of plant to animal food in public, the researchers report. Previous studies had already shown that plant-based nutrition has benefits for heart health, but only for certain groups of people, such as vegetarians. Future studies on plant nutrition should examine whether the quality of plant foods affects heart disease and mortality. (as)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- Hyunju Kim, Laura E. Caulfield, Vanessa Garcia ‐ Larsen, Lyn M. Steffen, Josef Coresh, Casey M. Rebholz: Plant ‐ Based Diets Are Associated With a Lower Risk of Incident Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Disease Mortality, and All ‐ Cause Mortality in a General Population of Middle ‐ Aged Adults, in Journal of the American Heart Association (query: 08.08.2019), JAHA