The Washington Post
Make these food swaps
Regarding the Feb. 28 Health & Science article “Are these five food swaps healthy?”:
Choosing plant-based alternatives to meat and dairy can help people avoid heart disease, certain cancers and other health risks associated with consuming animal products.
Swapping dairy creamers for plantbased creamers might keep your heart healthier. Research shows that replacing dairy fat with vegetable fats can decrease the risk of heart disease. Consuming dairy products is associated with a higher risk of developing breast, ovarian and prostate cancers. Lactoseintolerant people can avoid the digestive issues that come with consuming dairy products by eating plant-based alternatives.
Opting for plant-based chicken — and other plant-based alternatives to meat — is also good for lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Studies show that consuming both poultry and red meat increase the risk of heart disease. And cooking chicken and other meats at high temperatures can form heterocyclic amines, which are carcinogens.
As a dietitian, I recommend patients consume a diet based on fruits, vegetables, grains and beans to stay healthy, but plant-based versions of meat and dairy products can be part of a healthy diet.
Anna Herby, Washington The writer is a nutrition education program manager with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.