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Not All Vegetarian, Plant-Based Diets Equal for CHD Risk

 A new study suggests that to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease it is simply not enough to eat a plant-based diet but that the foods in that diet must be high quality.

After 2 decades of follow-up in more than 200,000 adults, researchers found that adherence to a plant-based diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and legumes was associated with a substantially lower relative risk of coronary heart disease (CHD), whereas following a plant-based diet emphasizing less healthy foods such as refined grains and sugar-sweetened beverages had an adverse effect.

Their findings were published July 17, 2017 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

  1. Satija A, Bhupathiraju SN, Spiegelman D, et al. Healthful and unhealthful plant-based diets and the risk of coronary artery disease in US adults. J Am Coll Cardiol 2017; 70:411-422. Abstract
  2. Williams KA, Patel H. Healthy plant-based diet: What does it really mean? J Am Coll Cardiol2017; 70:423-425. Editorial