Doing This Food Swap Could Extend Your Life, Says New Study – Eat This, Not That

There are many benefits to reducing meat consumption in favor of eating more plant-based products. It could protect your brain, help your skin and boost your energy levels. Now, new research suggests that Swapping the calories you get from animal-based protein for the same amount of plant-based protein could help you live longer and lower your risk of dying from heart disease.

In the study published in the journal Nutrients, the researchers looked at data from a series of previous experiments, looking at information from about 1.5 million adults about sources of protein in their diets and their health outcomes.

The researchers not only found that swapping calories from animal protein for calories from plant protein was associated with lower all-cause mortality and heart disease, but they also found that replacing meat red from bread, cereal, and pasta protein was particularly strongly linked to lower mortality from heart disease. Admittedly, filling your diet with refined grains has its own negative health consequences, so if you’re adding more of these foods to your diet, opt for whole grains when possible.


Commenting on the study, Julieanna Hever, MS RD CPT, author of The plan Choose you now and The Healthspan Solution recount Eat this, not that! that it adds to the growing evidence linking the substitution of animal products for their plant-based counterparts to reduced mortality from disease and longer lifespans.

“When looking at the data broadly, plant-based diets not only have the ability to reduce the risk of chronic disease and mortality, but also to reverse such serious conditions as early-stage cardiovascular disease. advanced and type 2 diabetes,” says Hever.

Despite all the benefits of sticking to a plant-based diet, it can still be difficult to make the switch. You’ll probably have better luck starting with small changes, rather than trying to cut out animal protein altogether.

“One of my favorite tips for getting more plant-based protein into the diet is what I call ’50-50,'” Charlotte Martin, MS, RDN, CSOWM, CPT, author of The avant-garde solution, said. “Simply swap half the animal protein in a favorite recipe for plant protein – it works well for many recipes.”

For example, she recommends replacing half the meat in Bolognese sauce with lentils. In general, she notes that adding an ounce of tofu or 1/4 cup of legumes can usually replace every “ounce or two” of meat. Additionally, Martin suggests using legume-based pasta to get more plant-based protein in your diet and adding protein-rich seeds to your meal when you can.

Whether you want to go totally vegan or just want to start adding a few more plant-based meals to your recipe, get inspired by these 33 easy plant-based recipes that even carnivores will love.

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