Vegan, Vegetarian Diets Linked to Reduction in Cholesterol, Apolipoprotein B

In HealthDay News
by Healthday

Reductions seen across ages, continents, health statuses

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 31, 2023 (HealthDay News) — Vegetarian and vegan diets are associated with reduced total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and apolipoprotein B levels, according to a review published online May 24 in the European Heart Journal.

Caroline A. Koch, from Copenhagen University Hospital-Rigshospitalet in Denmark, and colleagues conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to examine the effect of vegetarian and vegan diets on blood levels of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and apolipoprotein B in adults older than 18 years. Data were included from 30 trials.

The researchers found that the plant-based diets reduced total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and apolipoprotein B levels compared with the omnivorous diet, with mean differences of −0.34 mmol/L, −0.30 mmol/L, and −12.92 mg/dL, respectively. Across ages, continents, duration of study, health statuses, intervention diets, intervention programs, and study designs, the effect sizes were similar. For triglyceride levels, there was no significant difference noted.

“If people start eating vegetarian or vegan diets from an early age, the potential for reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease caused by blocked arteries is substantial,” a coauthor said in a statement. “Importantly, we found similar results across continents, ages, different ranges of body mass index, and among people in different states of health.”

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