Virat Kohli turns vegan; here are the benefits of veganism

New Delhi Oct 9 Indian skipper Virat Kohli is the latest sportsman to turn vegan, joining the likes of tennis player Serena Williams and football star Lionel Messi. As per reports, the Indian cricket team captain has given up on animal protein like eggs and dairy products for over four months now. Kohli, who has been a fitness inspiration has reportedly included protein shakes, vegetables and soy in his regular diet.

Sources claim that the cricketer who was once fond of biryani is not missing meat anymore. It might be a tough choice for a hardcore non-vegetarian, but veganism has its benefits too.

Here are a few:
* Veganism means cutting down the intake of saturated fat, animal hormones and cholesterol and replacing them with fresh fruits and vegetables. Hence, it helps to reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and obesity among others.

* According to research by Nobel Prize winner Dr Elizabeth Blackburn and Dr Dean Ornish, a vegan diet caused more than 500 genes to change in only three months, “turning on genes that prevent disease and turning off genes that cause heart disease, prostate cancer, and other diseases”.

* Studies claim that non-vegetarians and vegetarians are more prone to cancer than the vegans. Vegan women have 34% lower risk of breast, cervical, and ovarian cancer than others.

*According to research, for people who are suffering from any degree of kidney damage, consumption of animal protein increases the risk of further kidney deterioration. Including limited acid producing food like fresh fruits and vegetables helps.

* Veganism also shows inflammation-fighting benefits which in turn helps to fight arthritis. In a study published in Complementary Therapies in Medicine in 2015, 600 participants were made to follow a vegan diet for three weeks. It was found that vegan diet reduced C-reactive protein, an important factor resulting in acute and chronic inflammation which causes arthritis.