Posts in Health & Nutrition

Low carb diets and plant based eating

August 31st, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition 0 thoughts on “Low carb diets and plant based eating”

A nutrition study on carbohydrate intake and risk of death has been causing a media stir this week.

This news may cause people following low carbohydrate diets rethink what they put on their plate.

 

The study, published in leading medical journal The Lancet, found that both low and high carbohydrate diets increased risk of death in the population studied.

 

It followed over 15’000 adults in the USA from the late 1980s, it analysed their dietary intake and followed up on the participant’s health over 25 years.

 

Their main finding was an increased risk of death at both low (being less than 40% of energy) and high (over 70% energy) carbohydrate intakes. The optimal level of carbohydrate intake being 50-55% energy. That equates to around 250g carbohydrates per day for the average woman and 313g per day for the average man, based on the UK recommended energy intakes of 2000kcal for women and 2500kcal for men.

 

They further analysed the dietary data and found that people who swapped antifungals carbohydrate for animal proteins and fats, for example lamb, beef, pork and chicken had the greatest risk of death. Those, who instead, chose plant based alternatives such as vegetables, nuts, nut butters and wholegrains decreased the risk of death by 18%.

 

The study concludes…

These data also provide further evidence that animal-based low carbohydrate diets should be discouraged. Alternatively, when restricting carbohydrate intake, replacement of carbohydrates with predominantly plant-based fats and proteins could be considered as a long-term approach to promote healthy ageing.

 

The take home message?

That, as always, moderation is key. And, that carbs are not the enemy! There is a clear difference, for example in carbohydrates in the form of added sugar (such as fizzy drinks, cakes, biscuits, sweets) to carbohydrates found in wholegrains, legumes or vegetables. If you choose to reduce your carbohydrate intake, be sure to replace this with plant based protein and fats, instead of animal sources. Fill your plate with wholegrains, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes and pulses!

Plant protein and heart health

July 25th, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Healthy Eating 0 thoughts on “Plant protein and heart health”

At Liberto we love to offer great tasting food that is good for our health. We also love to read the most current evidence about how our diet can impact our families’ health for the future.

This recently published study looked at the effects of swapping portions of animal protein for plant protein on heart health. The study combined the results from many (112) smaller randomised controlled trials, making it a meta-analysis, which is the highest grade of evidence (think top of the class!).

What did they find?

Swapping animal for plant protein significantly reduced three different measurements of blood lipids – LDL Cholesterol (bad cholesterol), non HDL Cholesterol and a lipoprotein called Apo-B. These have all been associated with higher risk of cardiovascular (heart) disease.

The researchers calculated that this level of reduction of LDL cholesterol equates to a 4% reduction in risk of major cardiovascular events.

How does it work?

Potential mechanisms include:

  • The displacement of saturated fatty acids and cholesterol, so the more plant protein we eat, the less saturated fat we eat from other sources such as red meat.
  • Foods rich in plant protein also contain soluble fibre (such as beans), and healthy fats (such as nuts) that lower cholesterol.
  • Plant protein itself lowers cholesterol (they found no difference in effect of whole plant protein foods, and protein isolates (so, for example, soy beans versus a soy protein powder). Plant protein is higher in the amino acid argenine, which in animal models has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol.

How to attempt to achieve this effect:

  • The studies most commonly substituted 30g of protein, so aim to swap animal protein sources for 30g plant protein each day. This equates to around two servings a day, so swap meat, eggs or cow’s milk for soya, peas, beans, nuts and legumes.
  • Most of the trials used soy protein as the plant protein, but other plant proteins studied included legumes, pulses, pea and nuts so include a variety in your diet to make it more interesting!
  • The studies included a mix of whole proteins (as you would find them in whole foods) and isolates (such as plant protein powders) – so alongside whole foods you could try a plant protein powder or shake.
  • The study included both people with high cholesterol and normal cholesterol levels – and found it lowered levels in both groups so you don’t have to have high cholesterol to reap the benefits!

Try some Liberto plant protein

One serve of our Edamame pasta contains an amazing 22g of plant protein

One serve of our Pea Protein powders contains 20g of plant protein as a minimum

To maximise the effect

While the impact of this dietary change on blood cholesterol levels was a small percentage, to achieve a greater reduction you can include this change as part of the portfolio diet – which makes other dietary changes to maximise the reduction in bad cholesterol levels (by up to 30%!). For more information on the portfolio diet check out our blog post here.

Read the full article here.

Effect of Plant Protein on Blood Lipids: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Siying S. Li, HBSc; Sonia Blanco Mejia, MD, MSc; Lyubov Lytvyn, MSc; Sarah E. Stewart, MSc, Effie Viguiliouk, MSc; Vanessa Ha, MSc; Russell J. de Souza, ScD, RD; Lawrence A. Leiter, MD; Cyril W. C. Kendall, PhD; David J. A. Jenkins, MD, PhD, DSc; John L. Sievenpiper, MD, PhD. Journal of the American Heart Association. 

Try the Portfolio Diet to lower your Cholesterol

July 22nd, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Healthy Eating 0 thoughts on “Try the Portfolio Diet to lower your Cholesterol”

Do you have high cholesterol? You might like to try the Portfolio Diet.

This evidence based diet includes many foods that have been proven to lower total cholesterol, and combines them to maximise their effect.

These foods include:

  • Nuts, such as almonds
  • Soluble fibre (found in beans, pulses and oats for example)
  • Soya protein
  • Plant stanols and sterols

These need to be included on the base of a healthy plant based diet (low in saturated fat, sugar and salt and high in fruits and vegetables) and lots of physical activity.

This diet has been extensively studied and has been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol (often called ‘bad cholesterol’) by 30%, which can be as much as first line low dose drug treatment with statins.

We’ve been investigating how including Liberto products can help dosage make the portfolio diet more exciting and flavoursome.

As part of the Portfolio diet you should aim to eat 80-100g of beans each day and 25-50g of soya protein.

The good news is that one 50g serving (dry weight) of Liberto Edamame Pasta contains 22g of soya protein.

Also, one serving of Liberto black bean pasta contributes 50g towards your intake of beans each day.

Traditional, wheat based pasta would not contribute to either of these goals.

For some inspiration please check out our recipe collection.

We love it when tasty food is also good for your health!

 Liberto

 

For more detailed information on the diet please click here. If you are concerned about your cholesterol level you should consult your GP, and may ask to see a Registered Dietitian for personalised dietary advice.

BAOBAB

April 3rd, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Healthy Eating, Super Additions 0 thoughts on “BAOBAB”

Our Vegan Protein Shakes are super powered by select additional ingredients. In this series of blogs we will go through why we hand selected each addition to boost our shakes! This month, the wonderful Maca & Baobab!

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MACA

April 3rd, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Healthy Eating, Super Additions 0 thoughts on “MACA”

Our Vegan Protein Shakes are super powered by select additional ingredients. In this series of blogs we will go through why we hand selected each addition to boost our shakes! This month, the wonderful Maca & Baobab!

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Probiotics & Prebiotics

March 1st, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Super Additions 0 thoughts on “Probiotics & Prebiotics”

Our Vegan Protein Shakes are super powered by select additional ingredients. In this series of blogs we will go through why we hand selected each addition to boost our shakes! This month, our probiotics and prebiotics!

 

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Super Seeds!

January 16th, 2018 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Super Additions 0 thoughts on “Super Seeds!”

Our Vegan Protein Shakes are super powered by select additional ingredients. In this series of blogs we will go through why we hand selected each addition to boost our shakes!  To begin, our super seed mix!

 

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Packed with Pea Protein!

November 29th, 2017 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Healthy Eating, Updates 0 thoughts on “Packed with Pea Protein!”

Our new range of vegan protein shakes are made using pea protein.

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What’s in a Portion?

September 28th, 2017 Posted by Health & Nutrition 0 thoughts on “What’s in a Portion?”

A portion of Liberto bean pasta really packs a punch….

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Plant based eating is one of the top lifestyle choices to reduce your carbon footprint

September 23rd, 2017 Posted by Health & Nutrition 0 thoughts on “Plant based eating is one of the top lifestyle choices to reduce your carbon footprint”

We know that plant based eating is healthy, however did you know it is also good for the environment?

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NEW RESEARCH: The health benefits of plant protein

September 25th, 2016 Posted by Health & Nutrition 0 thoughts on “NEW RESEARCH: The health benefits of plant protein”

A new study has been published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) showing the health benefits of plant protein.

 

The study analysed a large group of people’s diet and their risk of mortality (death) over a period of 32 years.
They found that people who ate more plant based protein had a lower risk of death. They also found that by replacing protein from meat sources with protein from plant sources risk of death could be cut by as much as 34%! This largest reduction in risk came from reducing intake of red processed meat (e.g. sausages & burgers).

Interestingly this study found that people who ate the highest amounts of meat protein were more likely to be heavier, less physically active, have higher intakes of saturated fat and lower intakes of fibre. People with high intakes of meat protein also had higher risk of death from cardiovascular disease.

As you may expect people who ate more plant protein had healthier diets and lifestyles. It seems our sources of protein (whether plant or meat) can be a marker of a healthy diet, this is because we need to consider which other nutrients come ‘packaged’ with the protein. For example, plant based protein is often packaged with fibre, vitamins, minerals and low levels of fat. Whereas, red meat protein is packaged with saturated fat, sodium and nitrates.

The authors of this study concluded:

‘Public health recommendations should focus on improvement of protein sources.’

This means increasing intake of plant based proteins, and cutting down on meat protein especially processed and red meat.

This study provides more convincing evidence that we should all be focusing on a plant based diet for our future health and happiness.

For tips on how to make your diet more plant based click here to see our blog post on the topic.

To read the study in full on JAMA’s website click here.

Heart-blue Liberto x

Reference: Song M, et al. Association of animal and plant protein intake with all-cause and cause-specific mortality. JAMA Internal Medicine 2016.

Plant Protein – are you getting enough?

September 3rd, 2016 Posted by Health & Nutrition, Healthy Eating 0 thoughts on “Plant Protein – are you getting enough?”

Make sure you are meeting your protein requirements from healthy sources.

 

How much protein do we need?

If you are vegan, vegetarian, or following a plant based diet, it’s important to make sure you are still meeting your daily protein requirements. We need protein to maintain our muscle mass, skin, hair and nails to support our immune system and to make enzymes for essential bodily processes. As our muscle is constantly being broken down and repaired we need to eat protein every day.

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.8 g/kg of body weight per day. On average this amounts to: 56 grams per day for a sedentary man and 46 grams per day for a sedentary woman. To calculate your minimum requirement: times your weight in kg by 0.8.

Some people will require more protein than this, such as those who are very active, athletes, the elderly and pregnant women. Some studies have shown for optimal use of the protein we eat it’s important to spread intake out through the day. So try to include a source at breakfast, lunch and your evening meal.

Healthy protein sources

Plant based sources of protein often come in a healthier ‘protein package’. While they can sometimes be less concentrated sources of protein than meat, meat protein can come ‘packaged’ with saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium. The good news is that plant based proteins often come ‘packaged’ with fibre, and have low levels of fat, saturated fat and sodium!

If you eat fish, oily fish are a great source of protein and also heart healthy fats such as Omega 3 fatty acids. If you don’t eat fish you can get Omega 3 from nuts such as walnuts, seeds such as flaxseeds, vegetable oils and soya beans and tofu.

Plant protein sources

To help you get enough protein see below for some good sources of protein:

Soya beans14g per 100g
Quorn14g per 100g
Kidney beans8.5g per 100g
Chickpeas8.5g per 100g
Tofu8g per 100g
Quinoa8g per 1 cup cooked
Lentils7.5g per 100g
Peas7g per 100g
Nuts7g per 1 oz
Soya milk6g per 200ml glass
Soya yogurt4.5g per 125g pot
Chia seeds4g per 2 tbs

Values derived from manufacturers packaging and McCance and Widdowson’s The Composition of Foods.

All of the Liberto range are high in protein!

If you’re looking to boost the plant based protein in your diet check our our Liberto range – all are high in protein! Our pastas are made from soya beans so one 50g serving contains 46% of your RDA for protein! If you want a quick & easy protein boost, our Chilli Sin Carne pasta sauce contains 16.5g protein per 225g jar (the protein coming from soya and kidney beans).

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