AHDB is an evidence-based organisation, funded by farmers, growers and others in the supply chain, helping inspire world-class food and farming in a rapidly changing world.

A group of independent experts providing evidence-based information on a wide variety of foods in the context of a healthy, balanced and sustainable diet.

Photo of Food Advisory Board member Gill Jenkins Gill Jenkins
Photo of Food Advisory Board member Robert Pickard Robert Pickard
Photo of Food Advisory Board member Nigel Scollan Nigel Scollan
When it comes to the food we eat, the way it is produced has an impact on the environment.

Eating a healthy, balanced diet is an important part of maintaining good health.

Not all meat and dairy is produced in the same way across the globe, but the food from UK farmers is produced to world-class standards.

Articles

When it comes to the food we eat, the way it is produced has a huge impact on its environmental impact and sustainability.

All articles

Is switching towards a more plant-based diet healthier for you?

Last updated 16th December 2020

Well-balanced plant-based diets can provide the nutrients the body needs to be healthy. There is some evidence that dietary patterns that include plenty of plant-based foods (but don’t necessarily exclude meat/animal foods) have health benefits. A plant-based diet is typically high in fruit and vegetables, wholegrains and dietary fibre while, being low in saturated fat and added sugars.

The evidence specifically for vegan diets and health is limited, although some evidence suggests a reduced risk of certain diseases, such as Type 2 diabetes. However, these studies are mainly observational so can’t prove direct cause and effect. It may be that people who follow more plant-based diets have healthier lifestyles overall, for instance, they may be more physically active, maintain a healthier weight, consume less alcohol, and are less likely to smoke. In addition, not all plant-based diets are equal! Well-planned vegetarian and vegan diets can be nutritious and healthy, but it is also possible to follow a vegan diet badly. Some processed foods that are suitable for vegans can also be high in saturated fat, salt and added sugars, such as deep fried foods, biscuits, crisps and confectionery.

Is switching towards a more plant-based diet healthier for you