Eating a Mediterranean diet could save your life. Recently, a study comparing two different versions of the Mediterranean diet with a low-fat diet was published, showing the health benefits of all of the diets. Other studies have shown that eating this way could reduce your likelihood of struggling with stroke and heart disease. One of the diets focused on nuts, the other on extra virgin olive oil and the last one was just a low-fat diet. The study was publish in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Both of the Mediterranean diets proved to be good for your health. Combined, both of those diets reduced the risks of heart disease and stroke by nearly 30 percent. The majority of drugs that provide comparable health benefits only reduce our overall risk by 25 percent, showing that a heart-healthy diet can be more effective than medication.
The Mediterranean diet incorporates healthy fats, unlike low-fat diets that try to reduce all fats. The diet is rich in olive oil, dairy, fruits and vegetables, some fish and poultry and not too much red meat or dairy. The trial used 7447 patients and followed them for five years.
The Mediterranean diets incorporated olive oil, fatty fish, wine and white meat. The low-fat diet included pasta, potatoes, bread, rice, lean seafood and dairy products. The low-fat diet also discouraged many of the staples of the Mediterranean diet.
Both groups were about equal in physical activity. In the next publication the authors of the study will discuss the weight of the participants and how that may or may not have changed during the course of the study.