A new study was published today in the journal Circulation and revealed that your heart health can be kept with two well-known diets that seem to be equally good for heart health – a vegan diet and the Mediterranean diet.
The study was conducted on 107 overweight participants
For three months, researchers asked some subjects to consume a low-calorie Mediterranean diet, while they asked the others to eat a low-calorie vegan diet based on eggs, vegetables, and dairy products.
The Mediterranean diet combined fish, red meat, and chicken meat with vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and fruits.
After the three months period ended, the subjects were asked to shift the menus. The majority of the subjects remained on both diets, combining them.
Regardless of the diets, all the subjects got rid of 1.5 kg of body fat, on average, and approximately 2 kg of body weight, on average.
Even more, the participants presented almost the same BMI (body mass index) decrease rate.
The differences between the two diets
However, researchers discovered 2 significant discrepancies between the Mediterranean diet and the vegan diet. The vegan diet produced a higher decrease in the blood LDL (bad cholesterol) levels.
On the other hand, the Mediterranean diet produced a higher decrease in the triglycerides levels, thus reducing the risks for cardiovascular diseases, stroke, and heart attack.
“The take-home message of our study is that a low-calorie lacto-ovo-vegetarian diet can help patients reduce cardiovascular risk about the same as a low-calorie Mediterranean diet,” explained Francesco Sofi, the leading author of the research.
“People have more than one choice for a heart-healthy diet,” added Sofi, quoted by the journal Circulation.
According to Cheryl Anderson, a professor at the University of California, San Diego, both the Mediterranean diet and the Lacto-ovo vegan diet have their similarities and most probably that’s the reason why the study concluded that these two great diets seem to be equally good for heart health.