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Plant-Based Vegan Diets for Cardiovascular Safety and Performance in Endurance Sports

Studies have suggested that endurance athletes are at higher-than-average risk for atherosclerosis and myocardial damage.

In this report published in Nutrients magazine, in January 2019, the ability of plant-based regimens to reduce risk and positively affect performance was reviewed.

A plant-based vegan diet with its beneficial effect on cardiovascular risk factors, especially plasma lipid concentrations, body weight, and blood pressure, and its ability to reverse existing atherosclerotic lesions, could provide a substantial measure of cardiovascular protection.

Plant-based diets are also believed to offer many performance advantages. They have consistently been shown to reduce body fat, leading to a leaner body composition.

Because plants are typically high in carbohydrate, they foster effective glycogen storage. By reducing blood viscosity and improving arterial flexibility and endothelial function, they would be expected to improve vascular flow and tissue oxygenation.

Because many vegetables, fruits, and other plant-based foods are rich in antioxidants, they can reduce oxidative stress.

Plant-based diets have also been shown to reduce indicators of inflammation.

These features of plant-based vegan diets may present safety and performance advantages for endurance athletes.

This review explores the role of nutrition in providing cardio protection, focusing on plant-based diets previously shown to provide cardiac benefits.

You can read the full review here: Plant-Based Diets for Cardiovascular Safety and Performance in Endurance Sports