freelance journalist, print journalist, online journalist, copywriter, content editor, freelance editor, health and lifestyle, blogger Is meat-free the way to better health? | Christine Morgan - Journalist
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If I had a substantial royalty cheque for each time I’ve written about vegetarianism and how it benefits health, I’d be considerably better off than I am today. There again, I’d only spend it all on braised tofu (as regular Riskfactorphobes Anonymous readers know, I am a particularly die-hard veggie).

And today there’s more news about how eating a plant-based diet benefits your health and wellbeing compared to eating a flesh-based one. Published in the journal Diabetes Care, a study by Loma Linda University researchers suggests vegetarians have a 36 percent lower rate of metabolic syndrome – a group of symptoms that lead to diabetes, heart disease and stroke – than people who eat meat and fish.

Their study of metabolic syndrome – which includes conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides and high blood glucose – suggests 25 percent of vegetarians are affected by it, compared to 37 percent of ‘semi-vegetarians’ (whatever that means, I’ve never seen the sense of the term, either you’re a vegetarian or you’re not a vegetarian) and 39 percent of people who’ll eat anything that moves or grows. It’s a relatively small but – as the researchers no doubt believe – significant risk reduction.

Good news for 75 percent of vegetarians though. Which is a result.

There again, you could say the Loma Linda research community is somewhat biased. Loma Linda – for those of you who don’t live in the US and therefore don’t already know – is particularly notable as the home of Seventh Day Adventists. And guess what the standard diet for a Seventh Day Adventist is? You’ve got it. Vegetarianism. I thought I should point that out in the name of balance.

Loma Linda, a Californian city, is also notable as being one of the places in the world where people live particularly long and healthy lives. Could their diet be responsible, many experts wonder?

I for one would like to think so.