News

Plant-Based Diets - A Physician’s Guide May 10, 2017 15:43

ABSTRACT

Because of the ever-increasing body of evidence in support of the health advantages of plant-based nutrition, there is a need for guidance on implementing its practice.

This article provides physicians and other health care practitioners an overview of the myriad benefits of a plant-based diet as well as details on how best to achieve a well-balanced, nutrient-dense plan.

It also defines notable nutrient sources, describes how to get started, and offers suggestions on how health care practitioners can encourage their patients to achieve goals, adhere to the plan, and experience success. 

SUMMARY OF HEALTH BENEFITS

Plant-based nutrition has exploded in popularity, and many advantages have been well documented over the past several decades. Not only is there a broad expansion of the research database supporting the myriad benefits of plant-based diets, but also health care practitioners are seeing awe-inspiring results with their patients across multiple unique subspecialties. Plant-based diets have been associated with lowering overall and ischemic heart disease mortality supporting sustainable weight management reducing medication needs4-6; lowering the risk for most chronic diseases decreasing the incidence and severity of high-risk conditions, including obesity, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and hyperglycemia and even possibly reversing advanced coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes.

The reason for these outcomes is twofold. First, there are inherent benefits to eating a wide variety of health-promoting plants. Second, there is additional benefit from crowding out—and thereby avoiding—the injurious constituents found in animal products.

Read the full report on our site here

 

Citation: Hever J. Plant-based diets: A physician’s guide.

The Permanente Journal/Perm J 2016 Summer;20(3):15-082


Nutritional Update for Physicians: Plant-Based Diets May 10, 2017 15:17

Introduction

In the HBO documentary The Weight of the Nation, it was noted that if you “go with the flow” in the US, you will eventually become obese.

1. In 2011, Witters reported that in some areas of the country, the rate of obesity is 39% and is increasing at a rate of 5% per year.2 Risks of obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, along with their ensuing complications (eg, behavioral health and quality-of-life problems) often go hand-in-hand and are strongly linked to lifestyle, especially dietary choices.3 Of all the diets recommended over the last few decades to turn the tide of these chronic illnesses, the best but perhaps least common may be those that are plant based. Despite the strong body of evidence favoring plant-based diets, including studies showing a willingness of the general public to embrace them,4 many physicians are not stressing the importance of plant-based diets as a first-line treatment for chronic illnesses. This could be because of a lack of awareness of these diets or a lack of patient education resources.

2. Risks of obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, along with their ensuing complications (eg, behavioral health and quality-of-life problems) often go hand-in-hand and are strongly linked to lifestyle, especially dietary choices.

3. Of all the diets recommended over the last few decades to turn the tide of these chronic illnesses, the best but perhaps least common may be those that are plant based. Despite the strong body of evidence favoring plant-based diets, including studies showing a willingness of the general public to embrace them. 4 many physicians are not stressing the importance of

4. Many physicians are not stressing the importance of plant-based diets as a first-line treatment for chronic illnesses. This could be because of a lack of awareness of these diets or a lack of patient education resources.