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If you’re a regular reader of this site, then you probably get more than enough protein in your diet — which is great. High protein intake is essential not only for those who want bigger muscles or a leaner physique, but anyone who’s looking to live a healthier life.
But odds are you’re probably the traditional gym rat who relies on chicken and whey/casein protein powders to meet your daily marks for this vital macronutrient. And while those proteins are better equipped for getting you ripped than their vegan counterparts, a new study published in the British Medical Journal shows that the plant-based sources may help keep you around longer.
United States and Iranian researchers reviewed the results of 32 studies looking at the protein consumption and death rates of different populations.
Most studies discovered that higher protein intake was associated with a lower mortality risk, but plant protein (such as pea or soy) specifically was linked to a decreased death risk. Most notably, plant protein intake was tied to an 8 percent drop in all-cause mortality and a 12 percent lower risk of cardiovascular-related deaths.
Additionally, a 3 percent increase in plant protein intake was tied to a 5 percent drop in all-cause mortality.
The possible reason for this, the researchers say, is that plant proteins have long been tied to controlling blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and cholesterol.
The researchers claim government agencies should more strongly advocate for the consumption of plant proteins over animal sources.
We get why you might be hesitant to give up your beloved whey protein — it is, after all, the best source of essential amino acids, especially leucine, which helps muscle protein synthesis. But if your overall goal is to live a healthier life, it might be worth going to the vegan side.