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Replacing Animal-Based Proteins with Plant-Based Proteins Changes the Composition of a Whole Nordic Diet—A Randomised Clinical Trial in Healthy Finnish Adults

1
Department of Food and Nutrition, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 66 (Agnes Sjöbergin katu 2), University of Helsinki, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
2
Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 20, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2020, 12(4), 943; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12040943
Received: 5 March 2020 / Revised: 23 March 2020 / Accepted: 26 March 2020 / Published: 28 March 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Macronutrients and Human Health)
Increased consumption of plant-based foods and decreased consumption of animal-based foods is recommended for healthy diets and sustainable food production. We investigated the effects of partial replacement of dietary animal proteins with plant-based ones on intake of energy-yielding nutrients, fibre, and plasma lipoproteins. This 12-week randomised clinical intervention comprised 107 women and 29 men (20–69 years) in three diet groups with different dietary protein compositions (“ANIMAL”: Animal 70%/plant 30%; “50/50”: Animal 50%/plant 50%; “PLANT”: Animal 30%/plant 70%; all: Protein intake 17 E%). Nutrient intakes were assessed by 4-day food records. Saturated fat intake (E%) was lower and polyunsaturated fatty acid intake (E%) higher in the PLANT and 50/50 groups compared to the ANIMAL group (p < 0.001 for all). Fibre intake was higher in the PLANT (p ˂ 0.001) and 50/50 (p = 0.012) groups. Total and LDL cholesterol were lower in the PLANT than in the ANIMAL group (p = 0.003 for both) but no differences in HDL cholesterol or triglycerides were observed (p > 0.05). Replacing animal protein with plant protein sources in the diet led to an increased fibre intake and improved dietary fat quality as well as blood lipoprotein profile. Flexitarian diets could provide healthy and more sustainable alternatives for the current, predominantly animal-based diets. View Full-Text
Keywords: plant protein; animal protein; whole diet; protein; fibre; lipoproteins; plant-based; dietary intake; dietary fatty acids plant protein; animal protein; whole diet; protein; fibre; lipoproteins; plant-based; dietary intake; dietary fatty acids
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Päivärinta, E.; Itkonen, S.T.; Pellinen, T.; Lehtovirta, M.; Erkkola, M.; Pajari, A.-M. Replacing Animal-Based Proteins with Plant-Based Proteins Changes the Composition of a Whole Nordic Diet—A Randomised Clinical Trial in Healthy Finnish Adults. Nutrients 2020, 12, 943.

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