Topics » Nutrition Science » Nutrient Profiles of Plant-Based Versus Animal-Based Foods (Video)
T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies

There can be significant variation in the nutrient content of a single type of food depending on how and when it is produced, soil conditions, and other factors. The bioavailability, in turn, will depend on many factors, especially the body’s needs at the time of ingestion.

That being said, it can be instructive to compare the general nutrient profiles of broader food groups. In the following video, Thomas Campbell, MD, discusses these differences and some implications.

Remember: far more nutrients and nutrient-like substances are not included in this brief analysis. For example, many thousands of phytonutrients (also known as phytochemicals) found in plant foods—carotenoids, lignans, flavonoids, sulfides, etc.—combine in whole foods in countless extraordinary ways to promote health and prevent disease. Keeping the focus on the video, however:

  • Were there specific differences between the food groups that surprised you?
  • How did the data change your perspective on how a whole food, plant-based (WFPB) dietary lifestyle differs from a vegan or vegetarian diet? What might be the consequences of those differences, and why might it be important that they are accounted for in research studies comparing the health outcomes of various diets?

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