"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

More plant-based protein is linked to healthy aging in women

January 18, 2024 – Consuming just barely more protein from plant sources than from animal sources was related to significantly higher probabilities of overall healthy aging in women, in keeping with a big latest study that followed middle-aged to older people.

The results showed that each 3% of calories replaced with plant-based protein from animal options was related to an increased likelihood of avoiding declines in considering skills, mental and physical health, and 11 serious health problems corresponding to Type 2 Diabetes and other diseases to be spared heart attack.

The results were published this week in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Researchers analyzed health and nutrition information from a database developed as a part of the Nurse's Health Study, which followed female health care professionals from 1984 to 2016. The health professionals whose data were used for this study were between 38 and 59 years old firstly of the study and had no physical or mental problems firstly.

Of the 48,762 women who were under 60 years old and healthy in 1984, 7.6% were still considered healthy 30 years later. The researchers defined healthy aging as having good mental health, with no considering or physical problems, and being freed from 11 major chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, Parkinson's disease, kidney failure, heart attack, stroke, heart failure and other common conditions that affect the Affect the center and blood vessels.

Overall, almost one in three women within the study remained freed from one in every of the 11 chronic diseases, and almost half of the ladies reported no memory problems. But about 85% of girls developed limitations of their physical functioning and almost two-thirds didn’t have good mental health.

“Protein consumption in midlife was associated with promoting good health in older adulthood,” said lead study writer Andres Ardisson Korat, DSc, a scientist on the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, in a Press release. “We also found that the protein source is important. Consuming most of your protein from plant sources in midlife, along with a small amount of animal protein, appears to be beneficial for good health and survival into old age.”

The researchers specifically checked out protein intake because previous studies have linked it to physical function, including limiting muscle loss and even reducing the chance of hip fractures and bone loss.

The evaluation included estimates of how much protein the ladies within the study consumed based on their answers to questions on what they ate or drank as part of standard surveys. Women reported how often they ate a food, starting from “never or less than once per month” to “six or more times per day.” The commonest animal protein sources the ladies consumed were beef, chicken, milk, fish and cheese. The commonest plant sources were bread, vegetables, fruits, pizza, cereal, baked goods, mashed potatoes, nuts, beans, peanut butter and pasta.

The evaluation showed that total protein intake, or just protein intake from dairy sources, had no impact on the probabilities of healthy aging. Consuming animal proteins was related to a 6% lower likelihood of healthy aging, while consuming plant proteins was related to a 46% greater likelihood of healthy aging.

The researchers decided to look into proteins of this kind because animal proteins consumed in middle age are related to higher mortality rates from health problems corresponding to heart disease, they said

The authors cautioned that the ladies within the study were predominantly white and that further studies in a more diverse population are needed to generalize the outcomes to other populations.