A vegetarian diet may just save you from a devastating health issue

There are two main kinds of strokes.

An ischemic stroke occurs when blood flow becomes restricted in arteries leading to the brain, while a hemorrhagic stroke refers to bleeding that results when a blood vessel bursts abruptly.

The risk factors associated with both can be reduced by abstaining from activities like smoking, eating processed foods, and drinking, as well as adopting habits like meditation, regular physical activity, and vegetable intake.

In fact, according to a new study published in the journal Neurology titled Vegetarian diet and incidence of total ischemic, and hemorrhagic stroke, adhering to the Taiwanese Vegetarian diet can reduce one’s risk for experiencing a stroke by more than 70%.

The authors more discreetly identified the habitual consumption of nuts, vegetables, and soy as potential contributors to this outcome.

The initial findings were derived from a Tzu Chi Health Study composed of 5,050, participants recruited studied between 2007 and 2009 and a Tzu Chi Vegetarian Study that included 8,302 participants from back in 2005.

The authors employed a subgroup of 1,528 to verify results. Thirty-percent of all of the cohorts examined were vegetarians, defined by the authors as someone who neither eats fish or meat. A quarter of these were men.

The average age of the study group was 50 and none had a previous history of stroke incidence.

“Participants without stroke in the Tzu Chi Health Study and the Tzu Chi Vegetarian Study (cohort 2, n = 8,302, recruited in 2005) were followed until the end of 2014. Diet was assessed through food frequency questionnaires in both cohorts at baseline. Stroke events and baseline comorbidities were identified through the National Health Insurance Research Database,” the authors wrote in the new paper. “Associations between vegetarian diet and stroke incidences were estimated by Cox regression with age as time scale, adjusted for sex, education, smoking, alcohol, physical activities, body mass index (only in cohort 1), hypertension, diabetes, dyslipidemia, and ischemic heart diseases.”

Although all of the participants ate a comparable amount of fruit, those who enjoyed the most profound benefits limited their dairy intake, and regularly consumed plant protein and fiber.

Three vegetarians endured ischemic strokes in the first group of the 5,050 included (1,424 vegetarians & 3,626 non-vegetarians), which means vegetarians enjoyed a total risk decrease of 74%.

Only 24 vegetarians suffered strokes of any kind in the second group which equated to 48% risk decrease overall—60% lower risk for ischemic strokes, and 65% lower risk for hemorrhagic strokes.

“Stroke is the second most common cause of death worldwide and a leading cause of disability,” study author Dr. Chin-Lon Lin explained in a media release. “Stroke can also contribute to dementia. If we could reduce the number of strokes by people making changes to their diets, that would have a major impact on overall public health.

Overall, our study found that a vegetarian diet was beneficial and reduced the risk of ischemic stroke even after adjusting for known risk factors like blood pressure, blood glucose levels and fats in the blood. This could mean that perhaps there is some other protective mechanism that may protecting those who eat a vegetarian diet from stroke.”

As previously reported by Ladders, plant protein offers a plurality of benefits without the disease risk associated with meat sources.

A recent report published in the BMJ journal it was determined that every 10 grams of plant-for-animal protein per 1,000 calories result in a 12% lower risk of death from any cause for men and 14% for women.