Vegans are at lower risk of developing diabetes, new research suggests.

Consuming animal products doubles someone's risk of developing the potentially fatal condition, scientists claim.

And it only takes less than a tablespoon of butter each day, according to the spanish study, reports Daily Mail.

Researchers evaluated the link between eating different types of fat and type 2 diabetes.

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Some 3,349 participants were assessed over a period of nearly five years by a team from the universitat rovira I virgili in tarragona.

Consumption of 12g of butter each day doubled the risk of the condition, they discovered.

While eating the same amount of whole-fat yoghurt was associated with a lower risk, the study published in the american journal of clinical nutrition found.

Recently, dietary guidelines have shifted toward a plant-based diet rich in legumes, whole-grain cereals, fruits, vegetables and nuts.

It is also recommended to keep consumption of animal-based foods low, as they may linked to cancer, heart disease and strokes.

At the same time, vegan diets have become increasingly popular in the past few years mainly due to growing concerns about the treatment of animals.

More and more people are ditching the meat in favour of an animal-free diet,
and research last august suggested it could be a clever switch after scientists found swapping meat and eggs for lentils and nuts could add years to someone's life.

Eating less protein from animal sources and choosing instead to eat cereals, beans and soya, substantially reduced death rates.

New research suggests that vegans are at lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes because they avoid animal fats. Photo / 123RF
New research suggests that vegans are at lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes because they avoid animal fats. Photo / 123RF

But a study published yesterday suggested that a lack of meat in a father's diet could massively impact their chances of ever having grandchildren.

In a study on fruit flies, scientists from monash university, melbourne, found skipping out on protein can damage their offspring's chances of conceiving.

Another benefit of going vegan

Vegans don't need to worry about bulking up.

Their diets are just as effective in protein uptake and maintaining muscle strength as meat eaters, new research suggested.

Critics of the ethical diet have long been convinced that those who stick to plant-based foods are missing out on protein from meat.

But scientists from the university of massachusetts discovered that so long as they eat legumes, nuts and kale, they will have the same strength as a meat-eater.