In a randomized control trial published in the JAMA Network Open by researchers with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine early this week, they found evidence that a plant-based diet may promote after-meal burn and, as a result, lead to weight loss.
Among the 244 participants, half were randomly selected to follow a low-fat, plant-based diet for sixteen weeks, while the other half was a control group. They were advised to focus the diet on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes, but were given no calorie limit, while the control group made no diet changes.
The group that adopted a plant-based diet was shown to have around a 16% increase in post-meal calorie burn, and lost an average of 14 pounds. By comparison, the control group saw no change over the same period.
The plant-based group also saw fat reduction in liver and muscles cells, which reduced insulin resistance in these organs. There was also a decrease in total and LDL cholesterol. Each of these factors contribute to overall metabolic health.
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