Vegans Could Very Well Be the Healthiest Individuals Around, This Study Says
Those of us who aren’t vegan wonder why anyone would choose such a diet plan, right? How can someone live without the pleasures of slicing meat off a sumptuous rib? Or without ever enjoying a well-cut steak?
And while this new study may not directly give us the answers to these questions, it sheds light on why going vegan may just be the best diet decision you ever make.
Appearing in The Journal of Nutrition, this study has an approach different from the norm when it comes to going vegan or not.
Everyone knows of the effects of red meat, and how taking less of it could significantly reduce the risk of developing hypertension, cancer, and heart disease. What’s more, studies have proven that plant-based meal plans act to counter the effects of red meat.
However, this specific research looks at it via the antioxidants angle. Apparently, vegans have more antioxidants present in their bodies compared to everyone else, and who doesn’t know of the important role they play in the body?
In light of this finding, the research team concluded that vegans live the longest, and they’ll probably outlive fellow meat lovers.
The study group comprised of 840 individuals, grouped into five categories according to their eating styles. There was the non-vegetarian group, the vegan group who consumed zero animal products, and the lacto-ovo vegetarian group who consume eggs as well as dairy products but no fish or meat.
There were also pesco-vegetarians who consume fish but no other type of meat, and a semi-vegetarian group, this being a class of individuals who consume meat less than once per week, but at least twice every month.
Each of these individuals gave the fat, urine, and blood samples which were then analyzed for their levels of vitamins, unsaturated fat, saturated fat, and antioxidants.
As the research team would soon discover, vegans led the pack in terms of carotenoid levels, an important antioxidant. There were also in first place concerning enterolactone and isoflavones, the former of which decreases inflammation in the body. In having higher levels of enterolactone, vegans are less likely to develop cancer, among a host of other diseases.
This group also exhibited higher levels of omega-3, which the scientists found a bit odd. Ordinarily, this fatty acid is found in abundance in individuals who consume lots of fish, which vegans certainly don’t do.
However, a lot of nuts and seeds do contain a high amount of omega-3, and the research team took this as the reason for their peculiar finding. It could be that the vegan group had focused much on nuts such as walnuts, and seeds such as chia and flaxseeds.
The results from all other groups of vegetarians showed somewhat similar findings, save from those in the semi-vegetarian group. According to the study, the difference between semi-vegetarians and non-vegetarians was very minute.
While no one is saying that you should quit meat cold turkey, this new study should compel you into adding more vegetables into your meal plan. While at it, why don’t you also fix a fruit before every meal? Your body will surely thank you for it!
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