New research suggests that people who eat plant-based diets — including leafy greens, fruits, beans, whole grains, and also fish — are less likely to develop heart failure.
Introducing more leafy greens, beans, and whole grains into your diet may keep heart failure at bay, a new study suggests.
Heart failure is a condition in which the heart becomes unable to effectively pump blood around the body. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 5.7 million adults in the United States live with heart failure.
This condition is not normally curable, and it requires appropriate treatment for long-term management. This is why prevention is preferable, so researchers are constantly working to identify potential risks and ways of avoiding them.
New research from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, NY, has now revealed that individuals who follow a mostly plant-based diet have a significantly reduced likelihood of developing heart failure.
First study author Dr. Kyla Lara and her colleagues presented their findings at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2017, held in Anaheim, CA.
Plant-based diet fits ‘heart-healthy lifestyle’
The scientists analyzed the medical data of 15,569 participants in the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke longitudinal study, involving both white and black U.S. adults over 45 years of age.
All of these participants were free from coronary artery disease and heart failure when they joined the study. They were recruited between 2003 and 2007 and were followed for health outcomes until 2013.
The new research was spurred by existing studies that emphasized the role of diet in the onset of atherosclerosis, which is characterized by a buildup of fat in the arteries, leading to a narrowing down of the channel through which blood can circulate.
A diagnosis of atherosclerosis is one of the main risks behind heart failure, stroke, and heart attack.
In their study, Dr. Lara and team focused on the impact of diet on the likelihood of developing heart failure in the case of healthy individuals with no previous history of heart disease.