Do Vegetables Reduce Heart Disease Risk?

Do Vegetables Reduce Heart Disease Risk?

You may have seen in the news this week reports of a new study claiming that vegetables may not be as protective against heart disease as previously believed.

While these these findings don’t fit with our current understanding of diet and heart disease, we can’t immediately dismiss them. Vegetable intake alone may not be the panacea when it comes to reducing cardiovascular disease risk. However, eating vegetables is still important for many aspects of our health and diet does play a key role in reducing our risk of cardiovascular disease.


Studies on dietary habits and disease risk can be challenging to run. You tend to find that if someone has a higher vegetable intake, for example, they may also be more likely to implement other healthy habits like exercising regularly, eating less sugar, and so on. Therefore, it can be difficult to say for sure which of the habits is contributing to the reduced risk of disease.


Metabolic syndrome is the understood to be the biggest predictor of cardiovascular disease. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions that include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, weight gain around the middle and elevated blood lipids (cholesterol and/or triglycerides). Eating a healthy, nutrient dense diet and minimising intake of ultra processed foods is one of the best ways to prevent and reverse metabolic syndrome. This, in turn, will reduce your risk of heart disease. Our clinic specialises in weight loss and metabolic health optimisation. We see a lot of clients with metabolic syndrome which can often be reversed through diet and lifestyle improvements.


Vegetables provide essential vitamins, minerals and fibre and are still an integral part of our diet. The findings of this new study should not discourage us from getting our (minimum) five a day. The more vegetables we will our plates with, the less room there is for refined, nutrient devoid carbohydrates and highly processed foods. We encourage our clients to eat a variety of different vegetables. Preferably seasonal and organic. We recommend aiming for three portions at lunch and dinner as a minimum. The more you fill your plate with vegetables, the less room there is for processed foods and refined, starchy carbohydrates. Doing this will support your attempts to lose or maintain your weight, as well as provide a range of essential nutrients, beneficial to many aspects of health.


One of the best ways to eat more veg is to find ways to make them taste good. Let’s be honest, it’s hard to get excited about plain steamed greens. Try flavoursome Mediterranean dishes like ratatouille and caponata. Stews and curries with plenty of veg in are warming in the winter. You can even add vegetables to your breakfast smoothie. It sounds weird but you can’t taste them!

If you’re aware you could benefit from getting more vegetables into your diet, here’s a challenge for you. Each day for the next week, at every lunch and dinnertime, ask yourself this: how can I get one more portion of vegetables into this meal? If you’re eating out, order a vegetable side dish. Packing lunch to take to work? Chop up some veg crudités. If you’re heating up soup, throw in a handful of spinach leaves. No doubt you’ll be able to come up with some great ideas of your own. Aim to do this for just a week and see how you get on. You may well come up with some ideas that stick for good…


What we do know is this: a diet high in processed food and being overweight is strongly correlated with an increased risk of heart disease. On the other hand, a whole food diet and good metabolic health, which includes a healthy waist circumference, will help protect you from a number of diseases, including cardiovascular disease.


  1. Consume a whole food diet. Ultra processed foods are detrimental to health in a wide variety of ways. Cook from scratch using whole foods as much as possible
  2. Take steps to reduce stress. Meditation and mindfulness practices, journaling, yoga, deep-breathing exercises and spending time in nature can all help.
  3. Get active. Sedentary lifestyles are not supportive to cardiovascular health. A daily walk is great but resistance exercise and elevating your heart rate regularly are also important.
  4. Limit alcohol and don’t smoke. Keep an eye on your units and aim to keep under the recommended 14 units per week. If you smoke, do what you can to quit.
  5. Know your numbers. Blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels are all important numbers to be aware of. If these are elevated, take measures to reduce them naturally.



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Sarah has worked with hundreds of clients over the past decade to help them live in a healthy body that they feel confident in.

Sarah spent a large part of her teens and 20’s as a professional dancer battling with orthorexia and an unhealthy relationship with food and her body. This created a desire to understand the human body more so she could finally cut through the confusion and end the cycle of yoyo dieting. This fuelled her passion to help other women do the same.


Sarah specialises in supporting women who are struggling to lose weight due to underlying health issues. She’s helped many women manage their weight during and after the menopause, as well as clients with thyroid disease and immune system dysfunction. Sarah loves food and sharing healthy recipes with her clients. Her aim is to ensure that clients don’t feel deprived and instead, achieve their weight loss and health goals in a positive and sustainable way.


To enquire about working with Sarah, please contact us.



Ailsa is one of our most experienced practitioners. She specialises in helping clients to lose weight, develop a healthy relationship with food and finally feel comfortable in their skin. Ailsa’s mission is for everyone she works with to enjoy the journey and that working with a nutritionist should not be a punishment, but your access to a new possibility.


Ailsa is not only an experienced weight loss nutritionist, she is also a skilled coach. She helps our clients overcome emotional eating, destructive habits and self-sabotaging behaviours that have prevented successful weight loss in the past. Ailsa has spent years in clinic working with clients who have experienced yo-yo dieting and have discovered that long term weight loss is not just about eating less until you can stand it no longer.


Working with Ailsa you will be comprehensively supported, not only in improving your nutrition and lifestyle, but also your eating habits and your relationship with food. When you work on all these elements together, the results can be truly astonishing.


To enquire about working with Ailsa, please contact us.

Test Nikki is our Practice Manager, managing our team of practitioners and heading up the day-to-day running of the business. Nikki is involved in the strategic development of our practice, coming from a strong business background in town planning. A Florida girl, Nikki relocated to the UK in 2014 with her husband and two children.



Nikki is our Practice Manager, managing our team of practitioners and heading up the day-to-day running of th clinic.


Nikki is involved in the strategic development of our practice, coming from a strong business background in town planning.


A Florida girl, Nikki relocated to the UK in 2014 with her husband and two children.


Stéphanie is a skilled nutritional therapist and functional medicine practitioner with additional training in eating disorders, disordered eating and obesity. She believes that working towards both physiological and mental health is key in achieving optimum wellbeing.


Stéphanie’s personal experience of emotional eating and the ongoing struggle to find the right support led her to combine the science of nutrition with behavioural coaching to motivate and empower her clients. She specialises in helping people who struggle with their weight and their relationship with food. She helps them develop a healthier and more peaceful relationship with food and their bodies.


To enquire about working with Stéphanie, please contact us.


Inna is passionate about supporting women on their journey to improved health and wellbeing. She believes that the solution to effective weight loss does not lie in ever more restrictive diets, but a more sophisticated approach that optimises health and vitality, as well as promoting effective weight loss.


Working with Inna you will benefit from her in-depth knowledge of female health and hormones. She will support you in developing a healthy diet, lifestyle and mindset that ensures you reach your ideal weight and maintain it in the years to come.


Inna is passionate about food with a wide repertoire of delicious healthy recipes and meal ideas to ensure your weight loss journey is as enjoyable as possible!


To enquire about working with Inna, please contact us.



Ania is a firm believer that improving your health and losing weight should be a positive, empowering journey, not one centred around deprivation.


After being diagnosed with two autoimmune conditions in her twenties, Ania spent several years educating herself on the power of food and nutrition. She put it all into practise and changed her diet and lifestyle, reversing her endometriosis and thyroid disease. After experiencing such a significant improvement in her health, Ania had a big desire to help others. She embarked on a four year journey to study nutrition, graduating from the Institute for Optimum Nutrition with distinction.


Ania specialises in autoimmunity and works with clients who have underlying health issues preventing successful weight loss. Her expertise enables her to successfully support our clients with conditions such as hypothyroidsm (underactive thyroid), PCOS and diabetes. 


To enquire about working with Ania, please contact us.

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