Plant based diet & diabetes

Did you see the headlines last week “Vegan diet may boost mental, physical heath of diabetics“? Or “Vegan diet ‘can boost mood and ease symptoms for those with Type 2 diabetics’, scientists say”?

The headlines were based on a study published in the BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care journal. The lead author was Anastasios Toumpanakis from the University of London.

Marika Sboros spotted it first and she sent it to me for a comment. My first thoughts were 1) that the number of trials upon which the researchers claimed to have based their findings didn’t look right (more on that to follow) and 2) that the trials compared a plant-based (vegan) diet with the respective country's advice for Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) (whether in Korea, Italy, Europe or America). If a (nutritionally deficient) plant-based diet had done better than standard advice for T2D, that didn’t say much about the standard advice!

I then took a longer look for my weekly newsletter and it turned out to be one of those “how did it get through peer-review?” papers.

The full dissection can be seen below.

The headlines are as follows:

 

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