Heart Conditions

6 Ways In Which A Plant-Based Diet Improves Your Heart Health

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By Apollo 24|7, Published on- 28 March 2023, Updated on - 21 June 2023

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For years, medical professionals and dieticians have discussed the benefits of plant-based diets. Nowadays, vegetarianism and veganism are becoming trendy, due to the multiple health benefits associated with them. Plant-based diets usually include leafy vegetables, fruits and fruity vegetables that, when combined, are not only aesthetically appealing but also provide nutrients like fibre and antioxidants. These elements aid in keeping the heart healthy in multiple ways. Let’s discuss how plant-based diets can help you improve your heart health.

1. Lower Cholesterol Levels

A plant-based diet helps reduce cholesterol levels due to a natural compound called phytosterols. Traces of phytosterols are found in all plant-derived eatables like nuts, legumes and seeds, fruits and vegetables. Moreover, plant-based foods such as oats, chia seeds, berries and kidney beans are high in fibre, which can also help lower cholesterol levels. Furthermore, some plant foods, such as avocados, can help increase the production of HDL (good) cholesterol and reduce triglycerides (fat). 

2. Lower Risk Of Heart Attack

Following a plant-based diet can reduce the chances of having a heart attack, heart stroke, heart failure and other chronic heart ailments. However, these plant-based foods should be natural and consumed fresh for the best results. Research shows that young adults who incorporate more plants into their diet and mostly avoid unhealthy foods like junk foods, carbonated soft drinks, and red meats, have a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases (CDV), including heart attack when they are middle-aged.

3. Reduced Inflammation

A plant-based diet can help lower inflammation and cardiac stress since it is high in antioxidants and other anti-inflammatory chemicals. Studies have shown that certain compounds in plants, such as flavonoids, terpenoids, and polyphenols, help reduce inflammation through their anti-oxidative and anti-allergic effects. 

4. Improved Blood Pressure

Plant sources, such as bananas, avocados, spinach and sweet potatoes, are rich in potassium, which is known to lower blood pressure. In addition, plant-based foods are low in fat and sodium and contain healthy fats, which in turn helps in maintaining blood pressure efficiently.

5. Boosts The Immune System

Unprocessed, organic foods contain nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin D, zinc, selenium, iron, protein, phytochemicals and antioxidants that help keep cells healthy and allow the immune system to function effectively.

6. Better Weight Management

Vegetables like broccoli, spinach, kale, and Brussels sprouts are all nutrient-dense and low in calories, making them ideal for weight loss. Additionally, plant-based proteins such as legumes, beans, nuts and seeds can help keep you fuller for longer and assist with weight loss. A plant diet enables you to stay fit as it also has a low glycaemic index (glucose level) and helps avoid the risk of obesity, which is a concern for heart health. 

Following a plant-based diet is always a good idea, however, before making a switch it is advised to do your own research and consult a dietician, especially if you have a pre-existing medical condition. They would be able to analyse what your nutrition requirements are and then recommend you the food accordingly. 

Consult Apollo's Expert Dieticians


Medically reviewed by Dr Sonia Bhatt.


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