Plant-based Diets and Blood Lipids

Can a plant-based diet replace drugs in hyperlipidaemia?

Dr Shireen Kassam

Tuesday 17 October 2023 20:00–21:00 BST

Season 4


Blood lipid abnormalities are common, affecting over half of the UK population, and are a leading cause of cardiovascular disease and dementia risk. Unhealthy diets are a leading driver, and thus dietary approaches are key to prevention and management. Which type of foods, nutrients and dietary patterns should we be recommending?

In this Journal Club session, we’ll discuss a recently published meta-analysis of randomised trials looking into the effect of vegetarian and vegan diets on blood levels of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and apolipoprotein B.

This session covers:

  • Strengths & limitations of a meta-analyses
  • Which dietary patterns are associated with healthier blood lipid levels
  • Foods that are particularly beneficial for optimising blood lipids
  • How to communicate the role of plant-based diets for management cardiovascular risk factors

Watch this webinar to

Gain clear understanding of:
  • Which dietary patterns are associated with healthier blood lipid levels
  • The role of systematic reviews and meta-analyses within the hierarchy of evidence
  • Factors to consider when critically appraising systematic reviews and meta-analyses​
Be aware of:
  • The context for supporting the role of plant-based diets and consequently, the significance of interpreting the findings from the research paper being discussed
  • Foods that are particularly beneficial for optimising blood lipids
  • The strength and reliability of the evidence supporting the impact plant-based diets can have on blood lipids
Be able to:
  • Communicate the role of plant-based diets for the management of cardiovascular risk factors
  • Give practical advice for following a plant-based diet when considering cardiovascular health
  • Identify strengths and limitations of systematic reviews and meta-analyses

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Shireen Kassam

Expert speaker

Dr Shireen Kassam
Founder and Director of Plant-Based Health Professionals UK


Shireen is a Haematologist, Lifestyle Medicine Physician and Visiting Professor of Plant-Based Nutrition. She is founder of Plant-Based Health Professionals UK, a community interest company that provides education on plant-based diets. Her first book, Eating Plant-Based, was published in January 2022. She has also co-edited the textbook Plant-Based Nutrition in Clinical Practice.

Paper reference

Koch, C. A., & Kjeldsen, E. W. (2023). Vegetarian or vegan diets and blood lipids: A meta-analysis of randomized trials. European Heart Journal, 44(28), 2609-2622.


Dr Caroline Childs - Lecturer in Nutritional Sciences within Medicine at the University of Southampton

About Journal Club Chair, Dr Caroline Childs


Each Journal Club session is chaired by Dr Caroline Childs, Nutrition and Metabolism subject lead in Medicine at the University of Southampton. She received student-nominated awards for ‘most engaging lecturer’ and ‘best pastoral support’ and a colleague-nominated award for teaching excellence. Dr Childs is a Nutrition Society Ambassador and a South East Regional Representative for the Association for Nutrition.

As she says, “Developing skills in critical appraisal is an essential part of being a competent nutrition professional – whether you’re a dietitian, nutritionist or health professional specialising in nutrition.”


Nutrition research reported in the media often highlights mixed or contradictory results between studies. So, as a nutrition professional, how can you ensure you use the strongest available evidence to inform your practice?


This webinar has been approved for CPD by the AfN

Once you have viewed a full recorded session the mynutriweb team will review and arrange to send you your certificate via email from hello@mynutriweb.com within two weeks of viewing the session.