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Eat lentils, not meat, to live longer

On 2 August 2016 global headlines reported “Eat More Plant Proteins To Live Longer, Study Suggests” and “Why a vegan diet can help you live longer: Ditching meat for lentils, nuts and quinoa 'lowers the risk of an early death”.

Immediately my eyes rolled and phrases like “association, not causation”, “don’t they know the difference between complete and incomplete protein?” came to mind. However, those of us who inhabit the ‘real food/don’t fear fat’ world get nonsense like this shoved in front of our noses every time they appear in the media by white coat respecting low fat/high carb devotees. Hence these studies need taking apart; so let’s do it...

The study

The study was a population study, which means that the researchers took data already in existence and analysed it for patterns. The data for this article (original here) included 131,342 participants from two studies: the Nurses’ Health Study (which has been running since 1976-1980) and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (which has been going since 1986). I have written about both of these before here.


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