Plant-Based Meats and Our Health

According to the United Nations, meat and dairy production would increase you have to duplicate it to meet projected demand for animal protein in 2050, but the opposite is required to contain ecological damage. As I analyze it in my video. The Environmental Impacts of Plant-Based Meat SubstitutesIf we have any chance of sustainably meeting future food needs, we must reduce our meat consumption. The biggest barrier Following a plant-based diet may simply be a taste for meat.

Enter plant-based meats.

Alternative meat and our planet

Before we delve into the health profile of plant-based meats, let’s look at their impact on the health of our environment. Both Beyond the hamburger and the Impossible Burger Accredited groups have published environmental life cycle assessments and, in fact, switching to any of those meatless meat alternatives results in 90 percent reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, land use and Water footprint. Similar analyzes Over 50 different plant-based meats have been tested and all of them have been found to be much more sustainable.

Is plant-based meat healthy?

We have to ask: Compared to what? Food is a zero-sum game. Every time we eat, there is an opportunity cost, a lost opportunity to put something even healthier in our mouths. For example, are eggs healthy? Yes, compared to a breakfast. sausage link, but not compared to oats.

Plant-based meat alternatives are No match Look for unprocessed plant foods, like beans or lentils, and a bean burrito or lentil soup could certainly fill the same culinary niche as a lunchtime burger. But, if you’re going to eat some type of burger, it’s easy to argue that plant-based versions are healthier.

Is beyond meat healthy? Is impossible meat healthy?

Four of the worst components of the food supply are cholesterol, trans fats, saturated fats, and sodium. As I analyze it in my video. Are Beyond Meat and the Impossible Burger healthy?, plant-based meat hands down beats animal-based meat when it comes to cholesterol and trans fats. Trans fat intake is a serious potential risk factor of cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes, and has been linked to depression symptoms, lower testosterone in men and dementia. Higher levels of trans fats in the blood are associated with up to a 50 percent more risk of developing dementia, including Alzheimer’s. TO main source of trans fats? Animal products.

Plant-based meat is also free of hormones and antibiotics, further tipping the scales in its favor, but it can have saturated fat from added coconut oil. However the largest study to date of nutritional value of plant-based meats found that saturated fat levels of similar products only average about 2 grams per serving, which is much better than animal-based equivalents. However, sodium remains an industry-wide problem, like almost every other processed food out there.

Therefore, plant-based meat is healthy compared to animal-based meat, but not as healthy as directly eating unprocessed or minimally processed plant foods.

Table showing a nutritional comparison between beef and other plant-based meat burgers

Animal protein versus plant protein

Is there any advantage to eating protein from plants instead of animals? Studies have found that animal protein intake is associated with a increased risk of mortality, particularly dying from cardiovascular disease, while higher consumption of plant protein is linked to lower all-cause mortality: a lower risk of dying from all causes combined. When it comes to living a longer life, plant protein sources outperform any and all animal protein sources. Not only better than bacon and eggs, but also better than hamburgers, chicken, turkey, fish, and dairy proteins. What’s more, plant protein has also been linked to lower blood pressure, reduced LDL cholesterol, and improved insulin sensitivity.

Is Pea Protein Isolate Good for You?

The Beyond Burger is primarily made up of pea protein isolate. Will we still get any benefit from the whole plant if the proteins have been isolated? Surprisingly, yes. As I analyze it in my video. Plant-Based Protein: Are Pea and Soy Protein Isolates Harmful?The researchers found no significant difference in cholesterol lowering between protein isolate products and whole food sources, “suggesting that the cholesterol-lowering effects are at least in part attributable to the plant protein itself and not just the associated nutrients.

Is soy protein isolate bad for your health?

We’ve known about soy’s beneficial effects on cholesterol for about 40 years, but what about its impact on the cancer-promoting growth hormone IGF-1? Soy protein is similar enough to animal protein that, in high enough doses, such as eat two impossible burgers (mainly concentrated soy protein) a day, can increase your IGF-1 level. But the only reason we care about IGF-1 is cancer risk, and if anything, higher soy intake is linked to lower cancer risk.

For example, a recent systematic review and meta-analysis found that soy protein consumption is associated with a lower risk of breast cancer mortality: a 12 percent reduction in breast cancer death associated with each increase of 5 grams of soy protein per day. More than 10 grams a day of soy protein has been associated with reducing the risk of breast cancer mortality by almost half, and more than 16 grams a day with a huge 62 percent lower risk of dying from breast cancer.

Table showing the reduction in the risk of dying from breast cancer due to the consumption of soy protein

What about mycoproteins?

Mycoprotein is a meat alternative made from the fungal kingdom. Quorn makes beef without meat, chicken without chicken, fish without fish and pork without pork. As I analyze it in my video. The Health Effects of Mycoprotein (Quorn) Products Versus BCAAs in MeatIn terms of its environmental impact, Quorn meat carbon footprint It is at least ten times smaller than that of beef and its chicken-free chicken is at least four times better than chicken-chicken. From a health point of view, mycoprotein is rich in protein and fiber, low in fat, cholesterol, sodium and sugar, and can help people control cholesterol, glycemiaand insulin levelsand get better satiety. This is not a surprise, given that fiber and mycoprotein are fermentable by our good gut bugs, so they can also act as a prebiotic for our friendly flora.

Graph comparing the effects of chicken consumption versus mycoproteins on insulin levels

What happens to heme in impossible meat?

As I analyze it in my video. What happens to heme in impossible burgers?A specific problem with the Impossible Burger is the added heme, derived from soy plants to enhance the meaty flavor and appearance of the product. Security analysis have been unable to find any specific toxicity risk from soy heme produced by yeast, and the Food and Drug Administration has agreed that It is safe—both for use as a flavor and color enhancer.

Plants to win

Plant-based foods, including meatless meats, are not only healthier for our planet, but also for our bodies. But, as I analyze in my video Plant-based meat substitutes put to the test, whole Plant-based protein sources, such as beans, are even better. That’s why I consider plant-based meats to be more of a helpful step toward a healthier diet, rather than the end-all, be-all. The same amount of protein in a bean burrito would be better in almost every way.

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