While many people love their daily portion of meat, recent studies have shown that it can contribute to cancer and heart disease–and now a new Spanish study reports that eating animal products makes you twice as likely to develop Type 2 diabetes. 

But it isn’t just meat that can make you more at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. According to the study, eating just 12 grams (0.42 ounces) of butter a day can be a major player in whether or not someone goes on to develop diabetes.

This new conclusion praising the health benefits of the vegan diet comes from a new study at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona, Spain. 

For the study, researchers followed 3,349 Spaniards over the course of 4 and a half years. In order to qualify for the program, they had to be free of diabetes, but have a high risk for a cardiovascular event like a heart attack or stroke.

During the study, the participants record their diets and reported back to the university’s team. After four and a half years, 266 of them went on to develop type 2 diabetes, and most of them ate a diet rich in animal products during the research period.

Dr. Marta Guasch-Ferre of Harvard University stated about the study’s findings:

“These findings emphasise the healthy benefits of a Mediterranean diet for preventing chronic diseases, particularly type 2 diabetes, and the importance of substituting saturated and animal fats, especially red and processed meat, for those found in vegetable sources such as olive oil and nuts.”

Veganism has become more popular in the last couple of years, partially thanks to the growing concern over animal welfare practices. However, now there is even more of a reason to consider going full vegan, or at least reducing animal products in your everyday diet.

While a vegan diet can certainly be beneficial for preventing significant cardiovascular events, obesity and type 2 diabetes, Guasch-Ferre touts the benefits of the Mediterranean diet. This diet is rich in olive oil, pasta, fresh bread, fruit, vegetables and legumes as well as oily fish and poultry.

Therefore, if you are reluctant to give up animal products altogether, it is suggested in order to maintain health that you cut down on your dairy intake and meat intake, leaving only some fish and poultry a couple of times a week. According to the research, whole fat yogurt can also be beneficial for reducing type 2 diabetes. 


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