How Healthy is Plant-Based Meat? Benefits and Considerations

Many people around the world are choosing to shift towards plant-based diets for health reasons. With a growing awareness of metabolic conditions and how they directly impact your health and cause other issues, high-meat and/or high-calorie diets are no longer a sign of prosperity. However, we still want to enjoy our cultures’ traditional foods, which typically involve meat. But are plant-based meats really a healthier option?


How Switching Meat for Peas Can Improve Your Health

Switch Foods is proud to bring plant-based meats to Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and beyond based on pea protein, not soy or gluten. By using peas and pea proteinour vegan burgers achieve the same texture and nutritional profile as conventional meat burgers. Even better, allergies to pea proteins are far rarer than those to soy or gluten, which is a relatively common barrier to plant-based diets. Also unlike soy, pea protein does not contain substances that behave like oestrogen. If you already take oestrogen therapy or any other hormonal replacement therapy, or if you have to avoid intake of all oestrogens for medical purposes, this is a clear advantage.

As for protein quality, pea protein may have similar benefits in improving strength and body composition to whey protein. This is an essential factor for people who cannot or choose not to eat dairy products. Both whey protein and peas outweigh carbs when it comes to building muscle and strength, too. Many people who start vegan, vegetarian, or flexitarian diets substitute protein-rich meat for carbohydrates such as rice or potatoes, but alternatives such as Switch Food’s vegan burger or kafta are an easy way to maintain your protein intake.

If you’re working on muscle growth, pea protein may give you the same benefits at a lower volume than other protein types. It contains more of the amino acid leucine than egg and possibly soy protein. Leucine is one of the essential amino acids, which cannot be synthesized by the body and therefore must be obtained from food sources or supplements. It plays a crucial role in protein synthesis and muscle growth. Studies show that increasing leucine intake alongside sufficient protein intake in regular meals may increase muscle growth.

Other Potential Benefits of Pea Protein

Pea protein has several other potential health benefits:

  • It may support friendly species of gut bacteria in their ability to stay in the digestive system. This could work well alongside probiotics because they typically have temporary benefits when used alone.
  • It contains antioxidants, a category of nutrients that can protect your cells against oxidative damage. As a result, you may have lower levels of inflammation.
  • Additionally, pea protein may have substances that could help control blood pressure.
The Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet

Switching to a plant-based diet can help with your overall health, especially your heart and metabolic health. Replacing conventional meat with legumes, which includes peas, is linked to a 23% lower risk of heart disease. This also reduces your risk of all-cause mortality by around 9%, and replacing meat with any plant source of protein drops your risk of diabetes by 8-22%. Overall, a plant-based diet can increase antioxidant capacity, magnesium, potassium, and feeling satisfied after meals, while decreasing blood sugar, cholesterol, body weight, and inflammation. All of these factors underly metabolic syndrome, and can progress to chronic conditions like diabetes mellitus, if the condition is left alone.

These benefits are extremely important to UAE residents. Around one in six people in this country have diabetes, compared to around one in 11 people worldwide. In the Northern Emirates, this figure reaches as high as one in four for UAE nationals. If you’re looking for healthy dinner ideas, plant-based meat is a great place to start.

Plant-Based Diets and Obesity

Overweight and obesity are, together, now the most common nutritional problem in the world. It’s not just about appearances, with obesity increasing your risk of high blood pressure by eight times. What’s more, being obese since childhood can rocket your risk of developing type II diabetes mellitus by over 12 times, and increase heart failure rates by over six times.

As plant-based meat are lower in calories than conventional meat, they can be a convenient, side effect-free solution. A study comparing a lower-fat plant-based diet to a very high-fat diet found that the plant-based group ate 500-700 fewer calories per day. This is likely because plant-based foods are usually less energy dense, but are usually no less satisfying than meat dishes if they have a similar volume. Fibre contributes to this lower energy density, and humans’ poor ability to digest it can slow nutrient absorption and help you feel more satisfied for longer.

Plant based diets are an effective and sustainable way to lose excess weight, with one analysis showing a decrease by 3.4-4.6 kilograms after participants were prescribed such a dietary pattern. In postmenopausal women, who often have great difficulty in losing weight, a plant-based diet led to significant weight loss and improved insulin sensitivity. When compared to a “free-diet”, people who went plant-based had a 28% drop in blood sugar levels, more than double the 12% seen in the control group.

The Switch Foods Difference

Switch Foods moves past the highly-processed ingredients of other vegan meat brands. Besides vegan burger and kafta, we also offer kabab, mince meat, and soujuk alternatives. We make our products with just a few wholesome ingredients like pea protein, natural flavors, and spices;ome products have fresh vegetables too!, as they feature pea protein and the typical flavouring ingredients you can find in traditional foods, e.g. onion, parsley, and spices.

Better yet, none of our foods contain gluten or soy, two common ingredients in other brands that many people are allergic or intolerant to. There are no genetically-modified ingredients either. This is a problem with non-organic, genetically-modified soy, as its resistance to pesticides means it can survive accumulating high levels of glyphosate. When popular media warns you about plant-based meat, pesticide levels are one of the most common points, but Switch Foods does not rely on “Roundup-Ready” ingredients.

Whether a vegan burger or kafta is more to your tastes, Switch Foods is proud to bring the benefits of pea-based meat alternatives. If you want to make a positive change to your health, simply swap your favourite meat-based dishes for our delicious plant-based alternatives!

Click here to know more about our products and where to find them, or visit our recipes pages for some healthy dinner ideas.

Shopping Cart Icon Shop Now Show form submit popup

Thanks for signing up!

Don’t forget to follow us on our social media channels too