Wondyefraw Mekonen1, Diresibachew Haile1 and Richard J Bloomer2*
1Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia
2School of Health Studies, The University of Memphis, Memphis, TN, USA
*Corresponding Author: Richard J Bloomer, School of Health Studies, The University of Memphis, Memphis, TN, USA.
Received: May 04, 2018; Published: June 22, 2018
Citation: Richard J Bloomer.et al. “Blood Lipid Fractions Following a Vegan Diet in Ethiopian Society: A Study from a Developing Nation”. Acta Scientific Nutritional Health 2.7 (2018).
Background: Dyslipidemia is a risk factor for the development of cardio-metabolic diseases. Limited information exists from developing countries like Ethiopia concerning the health effects of a vegan diet in optimizing blood lipid profiles.
Objective: This study compared the effect of short-term (7-week) intake of a vegan diet with an omnivorous diet with regards to blood lipid profiles in a group of male and female Ethiopian subjects.
Methods: 97 subjects (52 females and 45 males), who consumed strict vegetarian (vegan) diets for 7 weeks participated in the study. Following a gap of one week, participants shifted to consuming an omnivorous diet for an equal period of 7 weeks. After the end of each dietary period, height (cm), weight (kg), and BMI (kg∙m-2) were recorded. Serum total (TC), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, as well as triglyceride (TG) concentrations, were analyzed. Mean ± SD values obtained from the two diets were compared by paired t-tests, using p < 0.05 for significant differences.
Results: The vegan diet resulted in significantly lower TC, LDL-C, and HDL-C concentrations compared with the omnivorous diet. The values in mg∙dL-1 for TC were (157.64 ± 41.89 vs. 166.86 ± 48.63, p < 0.003), for LDL-C (107.95 ± 39.97 vs. 113.21 ± 42.68, p < 0.044), for HDL-C (42.21 ± 9.22 vs. 45.68 ± 9.20, p < 0.001), and for BMI were (21.22 ± 3.12 vs. 21.27 ± 3.13, p < 0.015), respectively. Comparisons between genders showed significantly lower lipid values in males as compared to females (p < 0.05), with men experiencing a greater percent decrease in TC and LDL-C following the vegan diet as compared to women.
Conclusion: Short-term intake of a vegan diet compared with an omnivorous diet resulted in lower TC and LDL-C levels, which may potentially be linked to improved cardio-metabolic health. Men responded to a greater extent than women. The small decrease in HDL-C with the vegan diet, however, is unwelcome and requires consideration if adopting a vegan approach solely for purposes of improving cardio-metabolic health.
Keywords: Vegetarian; Vegan; Omnivorous; BMI; Lipoproteins; Cholesterol
Copyright: © 2018 Richard J Bloomer ., et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.