A new study just published finds that plant-based diets help you metabolize glucose, lose weight (especially in overweight people) and avoid type 2 diabetes. The study, from the University of Bergen in Norway, looked at different plant-based diets and found that in light of the rising prevalence of obesity and metabolic disorders that are related to impaired glucose metabolism, an effective strategy to delay or prevent disease is to go plant-based.

"A plant-based diet has been suggested as an effective lifestyle change that may reduce the degree of obesity and improve outcomes related to glucose metabolism," the study found. "This systematic review aimed to evaluate the effect of a plant-based diet on outcomes related to glucose metabolism."

The study aimed to evaluate the effect of a plant-based diet on outcomes related to glucose metabolism which effects weight, body fat, BMI and risk for metabolic disorders and diabetes.

The authors compared plant-based diets to an omnivorous diet and reviewed nine trials on subjects who were identified as overweight, or obese, had type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular disease. Five studies reported that the plant-based intervention significantly improved markers of glycemic control and four of the trials revealed a "significant improvement"  in the intervention group given a plant-based diet, compared to the control group. The remaining four studies did not observe a significant effect.

The findings suggest that a shift to a plant-based diet has favorable effects on glycemic control in individuals diagnosed with type 2 diabetes mellitus and/or obesity. Overall, no clear conclusions regarding the effects of different plant-based diets can be drawn based on the current findings alone.

This is only the most recent study to show that a plant-based diet has beneficial effects on weight, diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Another recent study found that eating more plant-based foods, even just one more serving of fruits and vegetables a day, had a beneficial effect on your risk of becoming overweight or getting diabetes. And still another recent review found that those who ate the most meat in their diets raised their risk of diabetes by 33 percent. Still another study from last February showed that a strict whole food plant-based diet can reverse symptoms of diabetes.

Eating plant-based can lead to optimal health and weight. For the easiest way to lose weight on a plant-based diet, try The Beet's own VegStart Diet, which provides 14 days of meals, snacks and expert tips to stay on track to lose the healthy way.

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