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Vegetarian diets: Will they help me lose weight?

Maintaining a healthy weight is important to reduce your risk for many health conditions, including high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, sleep apnea, mental illness, and cancer. In this video, Dr. Megha Poddar discusses vegetarian or plant-based diets and their potential impact on health and weight loss.

 

Learn the answers to the following questions:

  • What are the different types of vegetarian diets?
  • What are the health benefits?
  • Will you lose weight on a vegetarian diet?
  • When planning a plant-based diet, are there specific nutrients you should think about to ensure adequate intake?

 

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References

  1. McMaster Optimal Aging Portal. Oh my veggies! Can a vegetarian diet help you lose weight? (2018 Mar 19). Accessed November 1, 2021. Available from: https://www.mcmasteroptimalaging.org/blog/detail/blog/2018/03/19/oh-my-veggies-can-a-vegetarian-diet-help-you-lose-weight
  2. Huang RY, Huang CC, Hu FB, Chavarro JE. Vegetarian diets and weight reduction: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. J Gen Intern Med. 2016;31(1):109-116.
  3. Medawar E, Huhn S, Villringer A, et al. The effects of plant-based diets on the body and the brain: a systematic review. Transl Psychiatry. 2019:9(226).
  4. Bennet WL, Appel LJ. Vegetarian diets for weight loss: How strong is the evidence? J Gen Intern Med. 2015;31:9-10.
  5. Tran E, Dale HF, Jensen C, Lied GA. Effects of plant-based diets on weight status: A systematic review. Diabetes Metab Syndr Obes. 2020;13:3433-3448.
  6. Melina V, Craig W, Levin S. Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Vegetarian Diets. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2016;116(12):1970-1980.
  7. Tuso PJ, Ismail MH, Ha BP, Bartolotto C. Nutritional update for physicians: plant-based diets. Perm J. 2013;17(2):61-66.
  8. Barnard ND, Levin SM, Yokoyama Y. A systematic review and meta-analysis of changes in body weight in clinical trials of vegetarian diets. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2015;115(6):954-969.
  9. Ng M, Fleming T, Robinson M, et al. Global, regional, and national prevalence of overweight and obesity in children and adults during 1980-2013: A systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013. Lancet. 2014; 384(9945):766-781.
  10. Fraser GE. Vegetarian diets: What do we know of their effects on common chronic diseases? Am J Clin Nutr. 2009; 89(5):1607S-1612S.

Acknowledgements

This work is supported through the McMaster Institute for Research on Aging and funds provided by the Dean and Vice-President, Faculty of Health Sciences at McMaster University. 

DISCLAIMER: These summaries are provided for informational purposes only. They are not a substitute for advice from your own health care professional. The summaries may be reproduced for not-for-profit educational purposes only. Any other uses must be approved by the McMaster Optimal Aging Portal (info@mcmasteroptimalaging.org).

Many of our Blog Posts were written before the COVID-19 pandemic and thus do not necessarily reflect the latest public health recommendations. While the content of these blogs identify activities that support optimal aging, it is important to defer to the most current public health recommendations such as social distancing and frequent hand washing. Some of the activities suggested within these blogs may need to be modified or avoided altogether to comply with current social distancing recommendations. To view the latest updates from the Public Health Agency of Canada, please visit their website.

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