A Plant-based diet can offer protection against hypertension

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AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF) – Have you ever considered switching to a plant-based diet? A new study proves there are benefits to not eating meat.

Dr. David L. Mattson, Chair of the Medical College of Georgia Department of Physiology, says “a diet based or consistent with plant-based protein was quite protective to salt sensitive hypertension and related renal damage.”

Augusta University researchers say switching to a plant-based diet has its benefits.

Dr. Justine M. Abais-Battad, a Physiologist at the Medical College of Georgia, says “These two different diets change the bacteria that compose our guts.”

The study looked at rats given a diet high in salt versus rats given only a whole grain diet. The results were astounding.

“When we feed them high salt diets their blood pressure increases, and they develop some kidney damage and they have some issues with other circulating factors which are very similar to humans,” says Dr. David L. Mattson.

According to the Georgia Department of Public Health, people living a unhealthy lifestyle are most at risk for high blood pressure with African-Americans having the highest rates of diagnosis.

“Hopefully the work that we’re doing with this model will give us some insights to what might have pre-exposed this specific population to greater disease than the general population,” says Dr. Justine M. Abais-Battad.

And researchers say it could have benefits for pregnant women as well.

“When we switched the diet, John Henry switched the diet and he found that that was protective to these preeclamptic-like symptoms and there appeared to be downstream effects on the offspring, so it appears to be beneficial no matter what stage in life you change your diet,” says Dr. David L. Mattson.

If you’re thinking of going cold turkey and tossing out the meat in your fridge, the best ways to do it are:

Eat more vegetables!

Change the way you think of meat

Choose good fats

AND…Go for the greens. For more tips, click or tap here.

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