Heart risk reduced by switching to a Mediterranean diet

Heart risk reduced by switching to a Mediterranean diet

The Journal of the American Heart Association reports that simply switching one meat meal for a plant based meal can reduce risk of heart attacks. In a meta-study of 112 randomised, controlled studies (1)  the researchers showed that swapping animal fats for plant based protein reduced the risk of cardiovascular disease. 

Observing the effects on three markers for cholesterol,  low-density lipoprotein (LDL or bad’ cholesterol),   high density lipoprotein (HDL or good cholesterol)  and apolipoprotein B, a specific protein found in bad cholesterol that clogs arteries, they concluded that just substituting one or two meat or dairy ,eals with animal protein slashed the risk of heart disease. High-fibre foods had a further helpful effect.

“We are seeing a major interest in plant-based diets from Mediterranean to vegetarian diets in the supermarket and the clinic, and this comprehensive analysis of the highest level of evidence from randomized trials provides us with more confidence that these diets are heart healthy,” said lead researcher Dr. John Sievenpiper.


  1. Siying S. Li, Sonia Blanco Mejia, Lyubov Lytvyn, Sarah E. Stewart, Effie Viguiliouk, Vanessa Ha, Russell J. de Souza, Lawrence A. Leiter, Cyril W. C. Kendall, David J. A. Jenkins, John L. Sievenpiper  


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