The effect of a low-fat, plant-based lifestyle intervention on serum HDL levels and the implications for metabolic syndrome status - a cohort study.

Low-fat, plant-based diets are associated with low plasma levels of High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) and improved cardiovascular health.

The level of High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) in the blood is commonly used as an indicator of cardiovascular and metabolic syndrome risk. This study examined the effect of low-fat, plant-based diets on serum concentrations of HDL. Researchers fed 5,046 subjects recruited from the Complete Health Improvement Program (CHIP) with low-fat, vegetarian diets for 30 days. The systolic and diastolic blood pressure and serum concentrations of HDL, triglycerides (TG), total cholesterol (TC), low density lipoprotein (LDL), and fasting plasma glucose (FPG), LDL: HDL ratio, and TC:HDL ratio were assessed in all the subjects before and after dietary intervention.

Researchers discovered that low-fat, plant-based diets significantly reduced plasma levels of HDL, TG, TC, LDL, FPG, LDL:HDL ratio, and TC:HDL ratio of all the subjects, indicating a marked improvement in lipid profile and cardiovascular risk. According to this study, 323 metabolic syndrome patients was successfully treated with low-fat, plant-based diets after 30 days, but 112 participants acquired a positive metabolic syndrome status due to low serum concentrations of HDL at the end of the feeding period. The results of this study show that blood level of HDL is not a reliable biomarker of cardiovascular and metabolic syndrome risk in regular consumers of low-fat, vegetarian diets.

Research Summary Information

  • 2013
  • Kent L, Morton D, Rankin P, Ward E, Grant R, Gobble J, Diehl H.
  • Avondale College of Higher Education, 582 Freemans Drive (PO BOX 19), Cooranbong NSW 2265, Australia Australasian Research Institute, 185 Fox Valley Rd, Wahroonga, NSW 2076, Australia Medical Nutrition Therapy Northwest, 13568 SE 97th Ave. Suite 203 Clackamas, Oregon 97015, USA Lifestyle Medicine Institute, PO Box 818, Loma Linda, CA 92354, USA
  • Yes, Free full text of study was found:
A Plant-Based Nutrition Program.
Plant-based diets are not nutritionally deficient.

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