Meta-Analysis: Plant-Based Diets for Type 2 Diabetes

Can avoiding meat consumption improve biomarkers for type 2 diabetes?

Adding some scientific support to plant-based diets, researchers with the Physicians Committee just completed a meta-analysis of trials comparing plant-based diets to control diets in people with type 2 diabetes. The results suggest that avoiding meat consumption can improve at least one marker for type 2 diabetes.

Using the most well-powered published studies on type 2 diabetes with diet intervention, researchers compiled data on a total of 255 adults engaged in dieting studies of four weeks or longer. Compared to subjects on control diets, those feeding on low-fat vegan or lacto-ovo vegetarian diets saw improvements in levels of glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c). The effect was deemed comparable to oral anti-diabetic drugs known as alpha-glucosidase inhibitors.

In addition to HbA1c benefits, subjects on plant-based diets saw a non-significant reduction in fasting blood glucose. The results of the meta-analysis are now published in the journal Cardiovascular Diagnosis and Therapy. Studies were pulled from populations in Brazil, the United States, and the Czech Republic.

 

 

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