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What a Vegan Diet Can Do for Diabetics

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

As a physician who follows a vegan diet, I was excited that columnist Sally Squires covered the results of the NIH-funded study on diet and Type 2 diabetes [" 'Good' Carbs to the Rescue," Health, July 25]. Despite misconceptions about vegan diets, adherence to plant-based diets is much higher than most people think.

The American Diabetes Association diet involves eating almost anything you want -- in limited amounts. People on this diet have to count calories and fat and contend with the dietary inclusion of meat and animal products, which contain artery-clogging cholesterol and fat without the benefit of fiber.

But a vegan diet based on fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes is naturally low-fat, cholesterol-free and full of fiber. As long as you avoid added oils and fried foods you can eat unlimited amounts of these foods without worrying about negative consequences.

A vegan diet may be the key to reversing the current trends of obesity and diabetes. It's important for people to know that switching to a vegan diet is not as difficult as some make it out to be.

SARAH KEATING

Etobicoke, Ontario

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