Does Vegan Diet have an Effect on the Aging Process?

vegan diet

The vegan diet mainly centers around plant-based foods. The trend of following a vegan diet in the United States is becoming even more popular with time. A 2017 report found that the percentage of vegetarians has risen from 1% to 6% in just three years.

Several reasons have contributed to this drastic change. Mainly, people prefer a vegan diet over others as it is cruelty-free and helps lower the effects of extensive farming. A vegan diet ranks higher on the Healthy Eating Index as it has a good content of fiber, low cholesterol, and fat.

A new study has found further health benefits of following it. It may reduce the risk of type II diabetes, heart disease, and cardiometabolic disorders – a common cause of death in the United States.

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) in Washington, DC set up the research. The findings are in the journal Journal of the American College of Nutrition.

The Rapidly Aging world

This new review primarily focuses on aging, considering the fact that people are getting older at a faster pace. Hana Kahleova, first author and M.D., Ph.D., director of clinical research for the PCRM, has found a shocking truth.

She reveals that the 60 or above aged 841 million population would double to 2 billion within thirty years. It is one of the great challenges to the health care system. According to researchers, adopting a vegan diet would help to reduce the health care cost, which is $3.5 trillion every year.

To get clear results, Dr. Kahleova and her team went through both clinical and epidemiological studies. Clinical studies are done under controlled conditions to follow the effect of a particular intervention. On the other hand, epidemiological studies follow normal conditions.

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In both cases, the vegan diet was found to curb the threat of coronary heart disease, type II diabetes, and obesity. To be specific, the vegan diet reduces the risk of developing metabolic syndrome by half. Metabolic syndrome increases the chances of getting type II diabetes and heart disease greatly.

A direct relationship between a vegan diet and type II disease was also found. In addition, the review also reports a vegan diet having the potency to directly drop the risk of coronary heart events like myocardial infarction by 40 percent.

Vegan Diet Can Help to Get Same Benefits as Living in Blue Zones

As per the analysis, vegetarians may live more than the people following an omnivorous diet. The authors refer to areas as ‘Blue Zones’ where people usually have a high life expectancy.

One such area is Loma Linda, CA, where people are found to live ten years more than other people in California. Not to forget, Okinawa, Japan is one of those places where people have the highest life expectancy in the world.

People living in Blue Zones do not smoke and indulge themselves in a moderate-intensity workout. Also, they are found to stick to a vegan diet. The meals of Okinawan people are rich in soy products, sweet potatoes, and green vegetables.

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Besides living longer, people incorporating a vegan diet show better and healthier cognitive function for longer. Researchers noted that both the Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet have the potency to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

In addition, they found in one study that the MIND diet may also protect the person from developing Alzheimer’s disease. The MIND diet is a hybrid of two diets mentioned above and includes fruits, grains, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and animal products.

Bottom Line

Even though no one can stop the process of aging, adopting a healthy lifestyle, like a vegan diet, can help to slow down the process and increase life expectancy. A cost-effective approach to prevent chronic diseases and slow aging is to increase the intake of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.

About the author

Bob Luthar

After serving as a lead author in leading magazines, Bob planned to launch its own venture as HealthWriteups. With a decade-long work experience in the media and passion in technology and gadgets, he founded this website. Luthar now enjoys writing on tech and software related topics. When he’s not hunched over the keyboard, Bob spends his time engulfed in Sci-Fi/Fantasy novels and movies.

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