Doctors Should Have a Rudimentary Knowledge of the Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet for Six Health Conditions

A new comment in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine says all physicians should be aware of the benefits of a plant-based diet for six health conditions: weight loss and maintenance, cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and COVID-19.

The field of medicine, despite its predominant influence in society, has invested little in promoting healthy lifestyle choices“, states the commentary co-authored by Saray Stancic, MD, FACLM, director of medical education for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.”The consequence of this is reflected in our ever-increasing statistics on chronic disease, including rates of obesity and diabetes..”

Part of the problem, the authors say, is that “medical schools provide an anemic number of hours of nutrition education over 4 years,” which does not improve in postgraduate training. They note that in a recent survey of more than 600 cardiologists, 90% said they did not receive necessary nutrition education during training.

The commentary acknowledges that not all doctors need to be nutrition experts, but says they should at least have a rudimentary knowledge of the benefits of a plant-based diet for these six conditions, for which they provide detailed evidence. , including the following:

  1. Weight loss and maintenance. A study of 70,000 people found that those who ate a vegan diet weighed about 9 pounds less than those who didn’t. They also had a reduced risk of death.
  2. Heart disease. Animal products are high in saturated fat and cholesterol, which are major drivers of cardiovascular disease. But a recent meta-analysis found that those who ate a vegetarian diet reduced “bad” LDL cholesterol by 13 mg/dl. Another analysis found a 24% lower death rate from heart disease in vegetarians compared to omnivores.
  3. Cancer. Adopt healthy behaviors, including staying physically active and eating a diet rich in vegetables, fruits and whole grains has the potential to reduce breast cancer risk by 50-70%. Research also shows that soy-based and high-fiber diets reduce the risk of breast cancer. Diets high in dairy products increase the risk of prostate cancer. Diets high in fiber reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, while daily consumption of red and processed meat increases its risk.
  4. Diabetes. A Harvard study, which included participants from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, the Nurses’ Health Study, and the Nurses’ Health Study II, concluded that those who consumed a diet herbal remedies could expect a 34% reduction in the risk of type 2 diabetes.
  5. Alzheimer’s disease. A study found that those who adhered to the primarily plant-based DASH Mediterranean Diet Intervention Diet for Neurodegenerative Delay (MIND), which focuses on brain-healthy foods such as green leafy vegetables, other vegetables, beans, berries, nuts and whole grains, had a 60% lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
  6. COVID-19[FEMININE L’étude COVID-19 basée sur un smartphone de Harvard a révélé que chez ceux qui consommaient un régime principalement à base de plantes, il y avait une réduction de 41% du risque de COVID-19 sévère ainsi qu’une réduction de 9% des infections de toute gravité.

“Il est temps que tous les médecins du monde entier parlent de l’importance de l’alimentation et du mode de vie pour la santé”, conclut le commentaire, qui recommande aux médecins de le faire en conseillant les patients, en s’assurant que les hôpitaux proposent des menus sains, en donnant des conférences dans la communauté, en écrivant des articles , en utilisant les médias sociaux et en fournissant des commentaires aux médias.

Le Dr Stancic présentera “Ce que chaque médecin doit savoir sur la nutrition” lors de la Conférence internationale sur la nutrition en médecine qui se tiendra à Washington, DC, du 18 au 20 août.

La source:

Référence de la revue :

Stancic, S., et coll. (2022) Six applications des régimes à base de plantes pour la promotion de la santé. Journal américain de médecine de style de vie. doi.org/10.1177/15598276221104023.

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