We already know how essential vegetables are to our diets — they nourish our bodies with nutrients as well as keep us thin and satiated thanks to belly-filling fiber. But did you know that vegetarians can lose more weight than folks depriving themselves on a low-calorie diet?
A new study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition discovered that people who switched to a vegetarian diet improved their metabolism by reducing muscle fat, which is found both on the surface and inside of the muscles. "Vegetarian diets proved to be the most effective diets for weight loss,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Hana Kahleová, explained in a press release. “However, we also showed that a vegetarian diet is much more effective at reducing muscle fat, thus improving metabolism. This finding is important for people who are trying to lose weight, including those suffering from metabolic syndrome and/or type 2 diabetes. But it is also relevant to anyone who takes their weight management seriously and wants to stay lean and healthy.”
So how did researchers come to this enlightening discovery? Seventy-four participants with type 2 diabetes were randomly divided into two groups. One group followed a vegetarian diet consisting of veggies, legumes, grains, fruits, and nuts, and limiting animal products to one daily serving of low-fat yogurt. The other group followed a conventional diabetic diet with foods recommended by the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD).
Then, the researchers used magnetic resonance imaging to study the adipose (fatty) tissue in the participants' thighs. It turns out that veggie-eating folks lost an average of 6.2 kilograms compared to their non-vegetarian counterparts, who lost about 3.2 kilograms — proving that the vegetarian diet was almost twice as effective! Giving vegetarianism a go is totally worth a shot if you’re trying to get rid of the muffin top. Not to mention, losing weight is only one of the things that Happen to Your Body When You Stop Eating Meat!