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Animal Foods and Cardiovascular Disease

From the website

While cancer may be the most frightening diagnosis to receive, cardiovascular disease, which includes heart disease, stroke and hypertension (also known as high blood pressure), is the world’s number-one killer, claiming twice as many lives as cancer (1,2). In the US, about half of all people have it, and one in four will die from heart disease (3,30).

Here again, the protein and pro-inflammatory constituents of animal foods appear to play a central role.

A 2016 cohort study led by Harvard involving 131,342 participants found that every 10% increase in calories from animal protein led to a corresponding 8% increased risk of dying from cardiovascular disease, and concluded that “high animal protein intake was positively associated with cardiovascular mortality and high plant protein intake was inversely associated with all-cause and cardiovascular mortality” (31).

Another major cohort study involving more than 81,000 participants, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, found that those eating the most protein from meat versus those eating the least had a 61% increased risk of cardiovascular death, while those eating the most protein from nuts and seeds experienced a 40% reduction in risk (32).

All told, simply avoiding animal products can reduce the risk for coronary heart disease by 55% (25).

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