Vegetarian diets better for weight loss regardless of calorie intake

Vegetarian diets better for weight loss regardless of calorie intake

Those eating plants have almost triple the weight loss of those eating meat.

The findings point to a potential use of plant-based eating styles in the prevention and treatment of obesity and related chronic diseases.  These are eating patterns - not diets in the traditional sense of the word - and they don’t involve calorie restriction.  Many researchers agree that vegan eating styles are tied to lower BMI, lower prevalence of type II diabetes, and less weight gain with age.  This is the first randomized study that directly compares how vegan, vegetarian, and omnivorous dietary patterns that do not emphasize caloric restriction can impact body weight.  We found that participants consuming vegan and vegetarian diets lost an average of 8.2 to 9.9 pounds over eight weeks while those consuming some meat lost 5.1 pounds”
Lead researcher Brie Turner-McGrievy, PhD, MS, RD, of the University of South Carolina, November 15, 2013.

“This pilot study could have implications for those struggling to cut back on calories to lose weight.  These results show that weight loss can be achieved by following vegan and vegetarian dietary patterns that do not focus primarily on calorie restriction”
Adam Tsai, MD, TOS Public Affairs Committee Chair and Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado, November 2013.

What did this latest study uncover about eating more plants?

  • Eating ‘mostly plants’ or ‘all plants’ helped obese patients lose more weight than those eating meat
  • The plant-eaters 2-month weight loss was over DOUBLE that of the meat-eaters
  • The plant-eaters 6-month weight loss was almost TRIPLE that of the meat-eaters
  • The plant-eaters lost up to 10 pounds over the 6 month period
  • The meat-eaters lost around 5 pounds over the 6 month period
  • The plant-eaters lost around 5% of body weight over a two month period
  • The meat-eaters lost around 2% of body weight over a two month period
  • After those initial 2 months, all patients ate whatever they liked – regardless of calories (though sticking to either plant-rich or meat-rich diets)
  • The plant-eaters lost around 8% of body weight over the 6 month period
  • The meat-eaters lost around 3% of body weight over the 6 month period
  • The plant-eaters also had the greatest declines in cholesterol

The award winning study by Turner-McGrievy B, et al “How do plant-based achieve weight loss? Results of the New Dietary Interventions to Enhance the Treatment for Weight Loss (New DIETs) study” as presented on November 15 at a special session of The Obesity Society (TOS) Annual Meeting during Obesity Week, 2013; Abstract T-53-OR.  The researchers followed 63 overweight and obese patients, eating low-glycemic-index foods but without any calorie restrictions in place.  As reported by The Obesity Society, MedPage Today, Healthline.com, digitaljournal.com and on November 18, 2013.

Posted: Wednesday 20 November 2013