A recent study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology has found that eating meat regularly is associated with a 60 percent increase in the risk of heart disease, while plant-based proteins have been found to benefit the heart. Researchers who investigated the effects of different sources of protein on the heart found that people who consume a large amount of meat saw a sharp uptick in the baseline risk of cardiovascular disease; conversely, eating protein from sources like nuts and seeds was linked to a 40 percent reduction in CVD.
Scientists analyzed data from over 81,000 participants of the Adventist Health Study, all of whom filled out questionnaire regrading their eating patterns between 2002 and 2007. The authors stated that the link between heart disease and diet was most apparent before participants reached old age, leading them to believe that choosing healthy protein sources is an important factor in preventing avoidable deaths. “Our results suggest that healthy choices can be advocated based on protein sources, specifically preferring diets low in meat intake and with a higher intake of plant proteins from nuts and seeds,” the authors wrote.