The NCBI review concluded plant-based diets such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, and whole grains can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Most studies on vegetarian diets have been conducted in Europe, with one in Japan and three in the United States.
The main benefits of a vegetarian diet for cardioprotection are:
- The pooled analysis found that the death rate from stroke among vegetarian men was 22% lower than among omnivores, although this association was not so pronounced among women.
- Studies have shown that vegetarian diets lower blood pressure, accelerate weight loss, and improve glycemic control more than omnivorous diets.
- With a balanced vegetarian diet, fiber can reduce energy intake by triggering signals of satiety, as well as prolong nutrient absorption, further promoting satiety and mitigating postprandial insulinemic and glycemic responses, and potentially lowering cholesterol levels. Important components that can be found mainly in animal products, such as B12 and D, can be obtained from other sources. For example, the use of nutritional supplements, which are abundant in the health market.
- Research published in NCBI confirms the link between high unsaturated fat content in a plant-based diet can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Improving the lipid profile of the blood, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease due to its potential anti-inflammatory effects.
- The plant-based diet was also found to be rich in antioxidants and potassium, which can lower blood pressure and stroke risk through its effects on endothelial function and vascular homeostasis, and magnesium, which can affect glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity.
- It is worth mentioning the indirect benefits of a plant-based diet. We mean that substances used to store meat products, such as sodium, nitrates, and nitrites, can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease due to high blood pressure, impaired insulin response, and endothelial dysfunction.
The publication also clarifies that larger and longer studies evaluating diet, metabolome, and microbiome. Are needed to clarify the likely complex ways in which diet interacts with the gut microbial environment and affects cardiovascular health.
Photo by Gareth Hubbard