Vegan Diet Has Surprising Stick-to-it-iveness A meat-free menu is easier to maintain and lowers blood sugar better than a traditional diabetes food plan, according to a new study

Is a vegan diet the new "non-diet"?

The question isn’t if a diet works, but if it’s sustainable. Any number of diets can lower blood sugar, reduce cholesterol or promote weight loss over its initial three months. But the real winner is the one that can accomplish these tasks over the long term.

Enter the vegan diet – a low-fat eating plan that shuns all animal foods including meat, poultry, dairy and eggs. Such a diet has been shown to improve blood sugar in people with diabetes, lower LDL (bad) cholesterol, promote weight loss and even help reverse heart disease.

A study published in the February issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association has concluded that a vegan diet – no calorie counting or measuring foods required – is easier to stick to than you might think.

In the study, researchers from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, the George Washington University and the University of Toronto assigned 99 people with Type 2 diabetes to follow either a low-fat vegan diet or a conventional diabetes diet for 18 months.

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February 6, 2009

Leslie Beck, a Toronto-based dietitian at the Medcan Clinic, is on CTV’s Canada AM every Wednesday. Her website is