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Plant-Based: the New Processed Food?

From eNewsletter 8/3/2020

DID YOU KNOW that a single serving of 85% dark chocolate attenuated blood pressure during mental stress in young healthy women? Thus, according to a study in this month's Journal of the American College of Nutrition, dark chocolate has a beneficial effect during acute stress due to its ability to buffer cardiovascular reactivity. Ingestion of milk chocolate had no positive effect.  STAYING SAFE AMIDST A PANDEMIC

Continue with extra immune support until summer of 2021. SARS-CoV-2 knows no boundaries and does not discriminate. Besides, SARS-CoV-2 is not the only virus we fight. There is influenza (flu), norovirus (stomach flu), adenovirus (common cold), and four other coronaviruses (common cold), among others. Prevent and Fight Coronavirus 2.0 is our must-read protocol.


Steve and Bonnie: The growing availability of industrial plant-based meat, masquerading as healthy food, should be reclassified as ultra-processed food (UPFs). 

Very little is known about the consumption of UPFs by those who only eat plant-based. A study from this month's The Journal of Nutrition examined consumption of ultra-processed foods in a population of over 20,000, divided into 4 groups: meat eaters, pesco-vegetarians, vegetarians, and vegans. Plant-based diets diets were described by the proportion of energy from UPFs and the nutritional quality of the diet using healthy and unhealthy plant-based diet indices. Surprisingly, higher avoidance of animal-based foods was associated with a higher consumption of UPFs, with UPFs supplying 33.0%, 32.5%, 37.0%, and 39.5% of energy intakes for meat eaters, pesco-vegetarians, vegetarians, and vegans respectively. This study shows that most vegetarian/vegan diets are not very healthy, because of potential adverse effects of UPFs on nutritional quality and healthiness. As true vegetarians and vegans know, it takes a lot of work to achieve the amount of real food calories without incorporating ultra processed foods. The current plant-based food craze, which is derived almost exclusively from ultra processed sources, is not improving public health.


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