A plant-based diet can benefit your heart, but only if you eat certain healthy types of food, researchers say.
They tracked the eating behavior and the development of heart disease among more than 2,000 adults in Greece over 10 years, starting in 2002.
Compared to those who ate more animal-based foods, men who ate more plant-based foods had a 25% lower risk of heart disease. Though the same trend was seen among women, it was less strong: Those who ate the fewest animal-based foods cut their heart disease risk by 11%.
On average, people whose diet was heavier on plant-based foods ate three animal-based foods a day. Others ate five animal-based foods a day, according to the study being presented Wednesday as part of an online meeting of the American College of Cardiology and World Congress of Cardiology.
“These findings highlight that even a small reduction in the daily consumption of animal-based products – principally the less healthy foods, such as processed meat products – accompanied by an increase in healthy plant-based foods may contribute to better cardiovascular health,” said lead author Demosthenes Panagiotakos. He’s a professor and vice rector at Harokopio University in Athens. Read more…