If you want to lose weight in the summer – be vegetarian.
Researchers have found that, on average, overweight people who switch to a plant-based diet lose 1-2 pounds (7.4 kg) in the first three months.
They believe that their secret lies in their inability to eat fatty, high-calorie foods such as cheese and red meat, as well as in restricting their intake.
The study analyzed the results of 11 scientific trials on a vegetarian diet and weight loss involving about 800 adults who are overweight or have type 2 diabetes.
Some studies have compared the vegetarian diet to typical Western diets, while others have compared it to other fashionable diets, such as the Mediterranean diet.
Vegetarian diets have become popular in Britain by banning the consumption of animal products and opting for fruits, vegetables, nuts, greens and seeds instead (pictured)
What are the disadvantages of being vegetarian?
Nutritionists have warned that switching to a completely plant-based diet can make you tired or develop acne.
Avoiding or consuming animal products can deprive you of essential vitamins such as B12 and protein.
Lack of vitamin B12 in milk and eggs can lead to fatigue or tiredness, which can negatively affect your mental health.
Vitamin D is another nutrient in animal products, such as oily fish, that may be deficient in vegetarians.
Vitamin D deficiency can lead to bone development problems and disease.
Lack of protein in dairy products, fish, eggs and meat can stop children from growing and lead to acne.
Iron deficiency in red meat and liver can lead to anemia, fatigue and heart attacks.
Iodine is found mainly in seafood, is another food known to be deficient in a vegetarian diet, and is important in maintaining a healthy metabolism.
A plant-based diet can include all of the foods mentioned above, but people need to carefully manage what they eat to get enough nutrition or take supplements.
This is especially true if people switch to a vegetarian diet after consuming these foods from animals.
But another danger is the misconception that vegetarian products are healthier than non-vegetarian options.
MailOnline analysis of meat-free vegetarian alternatives showed that they contained more salt, sugar and fat than the products they had to replace.
Vegetarians lost 1-2 pounds (7.4 kg) in 12 weeks compared to those who did not change their diet and continued to eat meat and animal products.
Vegetarians lost 9 pounds (4.1 kg) compared to other fashionable diets.
However, the vegetarian diet did not significantly exceed the blood sugar or cholesterol levels of these diets, but only slightly improved.
Ann-Ditte Termannsen, chief author of the University of Copenhagen Hospital, said: “This careful assessment of the best evidence available to date clearly shows that adhering to a vegetarian diet for at least 12 weeks can lead to clinically significant weight loss and blood improvement. The sugar level can therefore be used to manage overweight and type 2 diabetes.
“Vegetarian diets can lead to weight loss because they are associated with low calorie intake due to low fat and high dietary fiber,” he said.
“However, more evidence is needed regarding other cardiometabolic results.”
British experts urged caution in the study, noting that it was not reviewed and that people should take into account the health risks of a vegetarian diet.
This includes the loss of essential nutrients such as vitamin D or animal products such as B12 and iodine.
Another factor is the amount of sugar in certain vegetarian foods, which can be especially dangerous for people trying to control their blood sugar levels, such as diabetes.
Another limitation of the study was that none of the trials prescribed a special control diet for participants who were not vegetarian.
This means that there are problems in accurately comparing the effects of a vegetarian diet.
Responding to the study, Professor Gunter Kunle, a nutritionist at the University of Reading, said he did not actually show people a vegetarian diet that helps them lose weight.
“Vegetarian diets are lower in fat and fiber than other diets and generally have less energy,” he said.
“But it can be achieved with a diet, not just a plant.
“While this study provides very useful information for the study, it does not mean that adopting a vegetarian diet will automatically lead to weight loss.”
Dr. Duane Mellor, a nutritionist at the University of Aston, also warned against switching to vegetarianism, despite the health risks.
“Reducing the full range of foods without thinking about how to replace foods in a vegetarian diet that includes foods like vitamin D, vitamin B12, iron and iodine can worsen health in the long run,” he said. .
“It’s also important to keep in mind that not all vegetarian foods are good for your health, because as sugar is vegetarian and more people choose a plant-based diet, the amount of highly processed foods produced to meet this demand is increasing.”
He encouraged people to talk to a medical professional, especially a nutritionist, before switching to a vegetarian diet if they have a health condition such as type 2 diabetes.
Obesity is associated with many health problems, including musculoskeletal disorders, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and at least 13 types of cancer.
The latest data released by the NHS in the UK in 2019 found that 64 percent of adults were overweight or obese. Treatment of obesity-related illnesses costs the NHS £ 6 billion a year.
In the United States, an estimated 73.6 percent of adults are overweight or obese.
An analysis of the vegetarian diet was presented at the European Congress on Obesity in Maastricht, the Netherlands.
WHAT SHOULD A BALANCED DIET BE?
According to the NHS, foods such as potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates should ideally be whole grains
• Eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day. All fresh, frozen, dried and canned fruits and vegetables are taken into account
• The main food is potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, preferably whole grains.
• 30 grams of fiber per day: This is equivalent to eating all of the following: 5 servings of fruits, 2 whole grain biscuits, 2 large loaves of bread and a large baked potato
• Choose low-fat and low-sugar types and have milk or dairy alternatives (such as soy drinks)
• Eat small amounts of beans, peas, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins (including 2 servings of fish per week, one of which should be fatty)
• Choose unsaturated fats and spreads and use small amounts
• Drink 6-8 glasses / glass of water per day
• Adults should have 6 g of salt per day and 20 g of saturated fat for women and 30 g for men.
Source: NHS Eatwell Guide