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  The effects of plant-based diets on the body and the brain: A systematic review

Medawar, E., Huhn, S., Villringer, A., & Witte, A. V. (2019). The effects of plant-based diets on the body and the brain: A systematic review. Translational Psychiatry, 9: 226. doi:10.1038/s41398-019-0552-0.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0004-AD12-5 Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0004-D844-C
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Medawar, Evelyn1, 2, 3, Author              
Huhn, Sebastian4, Author              
Villringer, Arno1, 2, 3, Author              
Witte, A. Veronica1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_634549              
2Berlin School of Mind and Brain, Humboldt University Berlin, Germany, ou_persistent22              
3Charité University Medicine Berlin, Germany, ou_persistent22              
4Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UfZ), Leipzig, Germany, ou_persistent22              

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 Abstract: Western societies notice an increasing interest in plant-based eating patterns such as vegetarian and vegan, yet potential effects on the body and brain are a matter of debate. Therefore, we systematically reviewed existing human interventional studies on putative effects of a plant-based diet on the metabolism and cognition, and what is known about the underlying mechanisms. Using the search terms “plant-based OR vegan OR vegetarian AND diet AND intervention” in PubMed filtered for clinical trials in humans retrieved 205 studies out of which 27, plus an additional search extending the selection to another five studies, were eligible for inclusion based on three independent ratings. We found robust evidence for short- to moderate-term beneficial effects of plant-based diets versus conventional diets (duration ≤ 24 months) on weight status, energy metabolism and systemic inflammation in healthy participants, obese and type-2 diabetes patients. Initial experimental studies proposed novel microbiome-related pathways, by which plant-based diets modulate the gut microbiome towards a favorable diversity of bacteria species, yet a functional “bottom up” signaling of plant-based diet-induced microbial changes remains highly speculative. In addition, little is known, based on interventional studies about cognitive effects linked to plant-based diets. Thus, a causal impact of plant-based diets on cognitive functions, mental and neurological health and respective underlying mechanisms has yet to be demonstrated. In sum, the increasing interest for plant-based diets raises the opportunity for developing novel preventive and therapeutic strategies against obesity, eating disorders and related comorbidities. Still, putative effects of plant-based diets on brain health and cognitive functions as well as the underlying mechanisms remain largely unexplored and new studies need to address these questions.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2019-06-222019-02-202019-07-172019-09-12
 Publication Status: Published online
 Pages: -
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 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1038/s41398-019-0552-0
PMID: 31515473
PMC: PMC6742661
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Funding organization : German Federal Environmental Foundation
Project name : Obesity Mechanisms / SFB 1052
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Funding organization : German Research Foundation (DFG)
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Grant ID : WI 3342/3-1
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Funding organization : German Research Foundation (DFG)

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Title: Translational Psychiatry
  Abbreviation : Transl Psychiatry
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Nature Pub. Group
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 9 Sequence Number: 226 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 2158-3188
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/2158-3188