Vegan Health ArticlesHeart Disease and High Blood Pressure
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Beating Heart Disease

Vegetarian diets also help prevent heart disease. Animal products are the main source of saturated fat and the only source of cholesterol in the diet. Vegetarians avoid these risky products. Additionally, fiber helps reduce cholesterol levels,[1] and animal products contain no fiber. One study even demonstrated that a low-fat, high-fiber, vegetarian diet combined with stress reduction techniques, smoking cessation, and exercise could actually reverse atherosclerosis—hardening of the arteries.[2] Heart diets that include animal products are much less effective, usually only slowing the process of atherosclerosis.

Lowering Blood Pressure

Back in the early 1900s, nutritionists noted that people who ate no meat had lower blood pressure.[3] It was also discovered that vegetarian diets could, within two weeks, significantly reduce a person’s blood pressure.[4] These results were evident regardless of the sodium levels in the vegetarian diets.


1. Sacks FM, Castelli WP, Donner A, Kass EH. Plasma lipids and lipoproteins in vegetarians and controls. N Engl J Med 1975;292:1148-52.

2. Ornish D, Brown SE, Scherwitz LW. Can lifestyle changes reverse coronary heart disease? Lancet 1990;336:129-33.

3. Salie F. Influence of vegetarian food on blood pressure. Med Klin 1930;26:929-31.

4. Donaldson AN. The relation of protein foods to hypertension. Calif West Med 1926;24:328-31.

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We began this archive as a means of assisting our visitors in answering many of their health and diet questions, and in encouraging them to take a pro-active part in their own health. We believe the articles and information contained herein are true, but are not presenting them as advice. We, personally, have found that a whole food vegan diet has helped our own health, and simply wish to share with others the things we have found. Each of us must make our own decisions, for it's our own body. If you have a health problem, see your own physician.