Eating more (vegan) protein is good for your health, according to a recent study in the British Medical Journal. People who get enough protein have a lower risk of early death from various causes. If you replace the animal proteins with vegan proteins, you can add extra healthy years to your life.
The purpose of the study was to examine and quantify the potential dose-response relation between intake of total, animal, and plant protein and the risk of mortality from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.
32 prospective cohort studies were included in the systematic review and 31 in the meta-analysis. During the follow-up period of 3.5 to 32 years, 113 039 deaths (16 429 from cardiovascular disease and 22 303 from cancer) occurred among 715 128 participants. The results:
- Intake of total protein was associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality.
- Intake of plant protein was significantly associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality and cardiovascular disease mortality, but not with cancer mortality.
- Intake of total and animal protein was not significantly associated with risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer mortality.
- A dose-response analysis showed a significant inverse dose-response association between intake of plant protein and all cause mortality.
- An additional 3% energy from plant proteins a day was associated with a 5% lower risk of death from all causes.
Higher intake of total protein was associated with a lower risk of all cause mortality, and intake of plant protein was associated with a lower risk of all cause and cardiovascular disease mortality. Replacement of foods high in animal protein with plant protein sources could be associated with longevity.