Replacing animal fats with plant-based foods decreases your risk for heart disease, according to a study published online in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Researchers followed 222,234 participants from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study and the Nurses’ Health Study I and II and monitored dietary fat intake and cardiovascular disease incidence rates. The results showed that replacing 5 percent of dairy fat with an equal amount of vegetable and polyunsaturated fats decreased heart disease risk by 10 percent and 24 percent, respectively. Researchers also observed a 28, 34, and 16 percent lowered risk for cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, and stroke, respectively, when participants replaced dairy fat with whole grains.
Chen M, Li Y, Sun Q, et al. Dairy fat and risk of cardiovascular disease in 3 cohorts of US adults. Am J Clin Nutr. Published online August 24, 2016.
Nutrition Tip of the Day
Challenge yourself to cut out the extra sugar in your diet. Avoid foods that are considered diet products or contain artificial sweeteners. For breakfast, try plain yogurt or breakfast cereals with zero grams sugar [oatmeal is a great choice]. For a snack, try plain, unsalted nuts or peanut butter sandwiches on whole grain bread instead of granola bars. This will help you re-learn to appreciate the natural sweetness in wholesome food, as well as increase your enjoyment of sweet fruits and desserts when you have them.