Effects of vegan diets on cardiometabolic health: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

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In parallel with an increased focus on climate changes and carbon footprint, the interest in plant-based diets and its potential health effects have increased over the past decade. The objective of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to examine the effect of vegan diets (≥12 weeks) on cardiometabolic risk factors in people with overweight or type 2 diabetes. We identified 11 trials (796 participants). In comparison with control diets, vegan diets reduced body weight (−4.1 kg, 95% confidence interval (CI) −5.9 to −2.4, p < 0.001), body mass index (BMI) (−1.38 kg/m2, 95% CI −1.96 to −0.80, p < 0.001), glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) (−0.18% points, 95% CI −0.29 to −0.07, p = 0.002), total cholesterol (−0.30 mmol/L, 95% CI −0.52 to −0.08, p = 0.007), and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (−0.24 mmol/L, 95% CI −0.40 to −0.07, p = 0.005). We identified no effect on blood pressure, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides. We found that adhering to vegan diets for at least 12 weeks may be effective in individuals with overweight or type 2 diabetes to induce a meaningful decrease in body weight and improve glycemia. Some of this effect may be contributed to differences in the macronutrient composition and energy intake in the vegan versus control diets. Therefore, more research is needed regarding vegan diets and cardiometabolic health.

TidsskriftObesity Reviews
Udgave nummer9
Sider (fra-til)1-17
StatusUdgivet - 2022

Bibliografisk note

Funding Information:
No authors have received support from any organization for the submitted work. ADT, ON, LJD, JSQ, and KF are employed at Steno Diabetes Center Copenhagen, a public hospital and research institution under the Capital Region of Denmark, which is partly funded by a grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation. KKBC is currently employed by Novo Nordisk A/S. SST has received grants from Novo Nordisk Foundation, Novo Nordisk A/S, Lundbeck Foundation, and Cambridge Weight Plan, and JSQ received grants from Danish Diabetes Academy, Danish Diabetes Association, and Novo Nordisk A/S. JMT owns stocks in Oatly group AB, KKBC, KF, and JMT own stocks in Novo Nordisk A/S, and KF owns stocks in ChemoMetec A/S and Genmab A/S. KF is a professional board member at ChemoMetec A/S. SST has received equipment/materials from Cambridge Weight Plan and Novo Nordisk. The authors have no other relationships or activities that could appear to have influenced the submitted work.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Obesity Reviews published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of World Obesity Federation.

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