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Plant-Based Diets Linked with Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

Plant-based diets show promise for a number of . Using more than 20 years of health and nutrition data, researchers scored the diets of more than 200,000 U.S. adults to see how closely they aligned with a plant based diet (mostly plant foods, minimal animal foods), a healthy plant based diet (emphasizing whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and legumes), or an unhealthy plant based diet (emphasizing refined grains, juice, and sweets). Plant-based diets were associated with a 20% lower risk of type 2 diabetes, while healthy plant based diets indicated an even greater risk reduction (34%). On the other hand, unhealthy plant based diets were linked with a 16% increased risk of type 2 diabetes. The researchers note that “plant-based diets need not completely exclude animal foods,” as those with the highest healthy plant based diet scores averaged 4 servings of animal foods per day, compared to 5-6 servings per day in those with the lowest scores. 
PLoS Medicine. 2016 Jun 14;13(6):e1002039. (Satija A et al.)