This cohort study was different to the earlier mortality study in that it investigated factors related to the incidence of disease and mainly compared Adventist with Adventist.
- On average Adventist men live 7.3 years longer and Adventist women live 4.4 years longer than other Californians
- Five simple health behaviors promoted by the church for more than 100 years (not smoking, eating a plant based diet, eating nuts several times per week, regular exercise and maintaining normal body weight) increase life span by up to 10 years
- Increasing consumption of red and white meat was associated with an increase of colon cancer
- Eating legumes was protective for colon cancer
- Eating nuts several times a week reduces the risk of heart attack by up to 50%
- Eating whole meal bread instead of white bread reduced non-fatal heart attack risk by 45%
- Drinking 5 or more glasses of water a day may reduce heart disease by 50%
- Men who had a high consumption of tomatoes reduced their risk of prostate cancer by 40%
- Drinking soy milk more than once daily may reduce prostate cancer risk by 70%
In summary, frequent eating of fruits and vegetables lowers the risk of several cancers. Eating nuts and whole grains reduces the risk of heart attack.
Adventist Health Study-2 2002-2008 97,000 Adventists aged 30+ years living in the USA and Canada
Preliminary Key Results
- 1% smoke tobacco
- .6% are current drinkers of alcohol
- About 50% drink soy milk ( the relationship between soy milk and certain cancers and heart disease is one of the major themes of the study)
- There is a wide distribution of diet:
- Total vegetarians (vegan)—4%
- Lacto-ovo vegetarians—31%
- Pesco vegetarians—i11% (eat fish and dairy)
- Semi-vegetarians—6% (eat meat more than once per month, but less than once per week)
- Type of diet is a significant factor for body weight:
- Our data shows a progressive weight increase from a total vegetarian diet toward a non-vegetarian diet. For instance, 55 year old male and female vegans weigh about 30 pounds less than non-vegetarians of similar height.
- The closer you are to eating a vegetarian diet, the better you can control your weight.
- Levels of cholesterol, diabetes, and high blood pressure, all had the same trend—the closer you are to being a vegetarian, the lower the health risks in these areas.
Loma Linda Adventist Health Studies – better health for everyone! Report 2008 Volume V