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Public Health Nutr. 2015 Feb;18(3):537-45. doi: 10.1017/S1368980014000263. Epub 2014 Mar 17.

Vegetarian diets and cardiovascular risk factors in black members of the Adventist Health Study-2.

Author information

1
1Department of Biostatics,Loma Linda University,24951 North Circle Drive,NH 2005,Loma Linda,CA 92350,USA.
2
2Internal Medicine,VA Loma Linda Healthcare System,Loma Linda,CA,USA.
3
3Health Promotion and Education,Loma Linda University,Loma Linda,CA,USA.
4
4Adventist Health Study,Loma Linda University,Loma Linda,CA,USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To compare cardiovascular risk factors between vegetarians and non-vegetarians in black individuals living in the USA.

DESIGN:

A cross-sectional analysis of a sub-set of 592 black women and men enrolled in the Adventist Health Study-2 (AHS-2) cohort of Seventh-day Adventists.

SETTING:

Members of the AHS-2 cohort, who lived in all states of the USA and provinces of Canada.

SUBJECTS:

Black/African-American members of two sub-studies of AHS-2 where blood and physiological measurements were obtained.

RESULTS:

Of these women and men, 25% were either vegan or lacto-ovo-vegetarians (labelled 'vegetarian/vegans'), 13% were pesco-vegetarian and 62% were non-vegetarian. Compared with non-vegetarians, the vegetarian/vegans had odds ratios for hypertension, diabetes, high blood total cholesterol and high blood LDL-cholesterol of 0·56 (95% CI 0·36, 0·87), 0·48 (95% CI 0·24, 0·98), 0·42 (95% CI 0·27, 0·65) and 0·54 (95% CI 0·33, 0·89), respectively, when adjusted for age, gender, education, physical activity and sub-study. Corresponding odds ratios for obesity in vegetarian/vegans and pesco-vegetarians, compared with non-vegetarians, were 0·43 (95% CI 0·28, 0·67) and 0·47 (95% CI 0·27, 0·81), respectively; and for abdominal obesity 0·54 (95% CI 0·36, 0·82) and 0·50 (95% CI 0·29, 0·84), respectively. Results for pesco-vegetarians did not differ significantly from those of non-vegetarians for other variables. Further adjustment for BMI suggested that BMI acts as an intermediary variable between diet and both hypertension and diabetes.

CONCLUSIONS:

As with non-blacks, these results suggest that there are sizeable advantages to a vegetarian diet in black individuals also, although a cross-sectional analysis cannot conclusively establish cause.

KEYWORDS:

Adventists; Blacks; Cardiovascular risks; Vegetarian diet

PMID:
24636393
PMCID:
PMC4167463
DOI:
10.1017/S1368980014000263
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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