Inflammatory material from meat and dairy linked to chronic diseases

| 6 September 2023
minute reading time

More than half of global deaths are attributed to chronic conditions, such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and certain cancers and inflammation is a key feature of all these. This study looked at how different diets affect inflammation in around 12,000 people. They found that diets that followed the Dietary Guidelines for Americans with a plant-based emphasis, lowered inflammation more than following the guidelines alone.

Replacing animal-based foods with vegetables, fruits, nuts and pulses significantly reduced inflammation as these foods contain compounds such as dietary fibre, vitamins, polyphenols and unsaturated fatty acids which reduce inflammation. Animal-based foods and unhealthy plant-based foods increased inflammation. The authors suggest improving guidelines to focus more on plant-based diet quality.

Wang YB, Page AJ, Gill TK et al. 2023. The association between diet quality, plant-based diets, systemic inflammation, and mortality risk: findings from NHANES. European Journal of Nutrition. doi: 10.1007/s00394-023-03191-z.

About the author
Dr. Justine Butler
Justine joined Viva! in 2005 after graduating from Bristol University with a PhD in molecular biology. After working as a campaigner, then researcher and writer, she is now Viva!’s head of research and her work focuses on animals, the environment and health. Justine’s scientific training helps her research and write both in-depth scientific reports, such as White Lies and the Meat Report, as well as easy-to-read factsheets and myth-busting articles for consumer magazines and updates on the latest research. Justine also recently wrote the Vegan for the Planet guide for Viva!’s Vegan Now campaign.

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