JAMA Internal Medicine published a study yesterday linking vegetarian diets to longer life. Among over 70,000 study participants, vegetarian habits reportedly reduced mortality risk by 12% overall, with even more dramatic risk reduction (28%) reported for vegan men. Plant-eaters, rejoice! … and meat-eaters, let’s talk about tempeh.
The study assessed death rates within a group of 73,308 people from the US and Canada, recruited for the Seventh-Day Adventists Health Study – 2 at Loma Linda University. Participants were followed for an average of just under 6 years.
Subjects were divided into 5 groups: nonvegetarian, semivegetarian, pescatarian, ovo-lacto vegetarian (29% of the study population), and vegan (8% of study population). 2,570 individuals died during the course of the study, with statistically significant differences observed between rates of death for vegan/ vegetarian versus nonvegetarian participants.
The most dramatic results involved reduced death for male subjects due to ischemic heart disease, or other forms of cardiovascular disease. Mortality rates among vegan men were 28% lower than those for nonvegetarian men; women’s rates of mortality from cardiovascular disease didn’t show such large differences, compared to other groups.
The ‘adjusted hazard ratio’ for all vegetarians combined — a measurement reflecting all causes of death during the study — was reportedly 12% lower than that of all nonvegetarians participating in the study.
Have I given you flashbacks? If this doesn’t sound like shocking news, it’s probably because such study results break along the food-blog shore pretty darn regularly.
- Death Wish? Eat More Meat!
- (Yet Another) New Study: Reduced Meat Consumption Means Less Chronic Disease, Less Pollution
- Citrus Fruits Linked to Reduced Stroke Risk
- New Study: Plant-Rich Diet Reduces Mortality from Heart Disease, Stroke
- Why Do Vegetarians Live Longer?
- Neal Barnard, John McDougall TED Talks: Health Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet
Even without consideration of all the animal cruelty or environmental reasons that drive people to explore plant-based eating, evidence continually accumulates to suggest that — if you enjoy living — eating vegan or vegetarian makes tons of sense!
Changing longstanding habits, with food or with anything else, can be daunting. But that initial effort pays off about a billionfold!
Check out these resources, to get started:
- Best Resources for New Veggie Cooks
- A Complete Guide to Vegan Cooking for Beginners
- Healthy Diet Makeover, Phase One: Foundations
- A Gift That Keeps On Giving: the 30-Day Vegan Challenge!
…. or just listen!
This new JAMA-published study represents the latest in a long long long long line of research indicting the Standard American meat-soaked nightmare of a diet.
Viva la (veg) revolucion!
Image credit: Creative Commons photo by CocteauBoy.