Biotech Updates

Consuming Plant-based Meat Substitutes Lowers Cholesterol Levels

April 26, 2023

Researchers from the University of Warwick in the United Kingdom were able to conclude that consuming plant-based meat substitutes can significantly lower a person's total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and triglyceride levels. The findings add support to the continuing list of benefits of plant-based meat substitutes for people and the environment.

Global reduction of meat intake has prompted scientists and researchers to come up with alternative sources of protein to sustain the population's demands while trying to mitigate climate change challenges. Plant-based and mycoprotein-based meat alternatives have become popular in the last few years but their impact on human health is not clear. This was addressed through a systematic review and meta-analysis of controlled intervention of trials, which initially involved 934 records. The study's objective was to assess the short-term effects of meat substitutes on certain cardiometabolic markers, namely total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, systolic and diastolic blood pressures, fasting blood glucose and overall weight.

After conducting the analyses, the researchers found that consuming meat substitutes was associated with significantly lower total cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, and triglycerides. It was also associated with non-significantly lower fasting blood glucose, systolic blood pressure, and weight, and with non-significantly higher HDL-cholesterol and diastolic blood pressure.

The results support the development of food- and health-related policies to encourage consumers to switch to meat alternatives to achieve better health and environmental sustainability.

Learn more from Dietetics.

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