Following a whole-foods, plant-based diet (WFPB) offers many rewards. Today, I’ll shed light on some of the health benefits of plant-based eating. Did you know that following a WFPB diet is associated with reduced risk for obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and hypertension? Here’s some more information about each of these conditions:
- Most of the world's population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than being underweight.
- Obesity is preventable, as it is caused by increased intake of energy-dense foods high in saturated fat, sugar, and sodium, combined with a lack of physical activity. - Health consequences of being obese include increased risk for cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, musculoskeletal disorders, and cancer of the breasts, prostate, liver, and colon.
Type 2 Diabetes
- Diabetes is considered the 7th leading cause of death in the United States. - Conditions associated with diabetes include blindness, amputation, and kidney failure. - Type 2 diabetes is preventable.
- Cardiovascular disease (CVD) - disorders of the heart and blood vessels - is the leading cause of death globally.
- Four out of five CVD deaths are due to heart attacks and strokes. Risk indicators include high blood pressure, increased glucose and lipids in the blood, as well as overweight and obesity.
- Indicators are associated with lifestyle-related factors, including an unhealthy diet and physical inactivity.
High Blood Pressure
- Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a condition that causes stress on blood vessels and forces the heart to work harder.
- High blood pressure is known as the ‘silent killer’ because most people do not experience symptoms.
- If left untreated, one could experience a heart attack or heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, blindness, and cognitive impairment.
Research has confirmed the health benefits of following a WFPB diet. Studies (linked below) also show that a plant-based diet can help to lower body weight and reduce your LDL cholesterol. The best part, it’s never too late to start!
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