Packaged plant-based foods not necessarily healthy

People could potentially add years to their lives by switching from a typical Western diet—high in animal products and sugar—to a more plant-based diet, according to a study from researchers in Norway.

But it would be healthier for people to make their own plant-based foods rather than relying on packaged foods like meat-free burgers, said Deirdre Tobias, assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in a February 9, 2022 Good Morning America article about the study. Tobias, who was not involved with the study, noted, “A lot of these plant-based products might still be highly processed and have a lot of sodium and saturated fats.”

Plant-based diets can be flexible and include room for occasional animal products, Tobias said. “The science isn’t there to say a steak or a burger once in a while is horrible for you, it’s the daily consumption that’s problematic,” she said.

Read the Good Morning America article: Eating a more plant-based diet can add years to your life, study finds