Plant-based Diet May Reduce Obese Children’s Risk of Heart Disease
Cleveland Clinic research suggests that obese children who begin a plat-based diet can improve their weight, blood pressure, BMI, cholesterol levels, insulin sensitivity and levels of myeloperoxidase and C-reactive program. That translates into a lowered risk of heart disease.
In just over 4 weeks, half the children in the study (along with a participating parent) followed the eating recommendations and significantly improved all the above-mentioned health profile measurements. The diet outline included plants and whole grains with limited avocado and nuts, no added fat and no animal-based foods. The other half of the study participants followed the American Heart Association Diet which offers fruits and vegetables, whole grains and non-whole grains, limited sodium, low fat dairy products, selected plant oils, and lean meat and fish in moderation. These children improved in four specific parameters – weight, waist circumference, mid-arm circumference, and a common marker of heart disease, myeloperoxidase.
Clearly the American Heart Association Diet has benefits, but the plant-based diet offered similar and in some cases, superior results. Researchers feel that people may find the plant-based diet recommendations easier to follow.
Protein-rich Black Bean and Garbanzo Salad
- 1 can of whole kernel corn (toss the liquid and rinse the corn in a colander)
- 1 16 ounce can of black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 16 ounce can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- ¼ cup of chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 2 tablespoons of minced red onion
- 2 cups of chopped Romaine lettuce leaves
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of minced fresh garlic
- 1 teaspoon of honey
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Mix the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl and toss gently.
- Prepare the dressing in a separate small glass bowl and whisk
- Dress the salad just before serving.
-Amy Hendel, PA/HealthCoach