A new study has found a diet that is helping women to live longer. When women choose to eat a Mediterranean diet in middle age, 40% had a better chance of living to age 70 or higher. The study was a collaborative effort between Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts.
Not only did these women live longer lives, but they lead healthier lives as well. They had very few if any chronic diseases or injuries that impaired their everyday normal life. They had better mental health and functioning skills. Those women who followed this diet strictly had a lower risk of heart diseases as they grew older. They aged gracefully and were very healthy up into their later years. They lived much fuller lives as opposed to those who did not follow the diet as strictly as the others.
More than 10,000 women were followed during this study. They were all a part of a larger study as well. The ages of these women were late 50s and early 60s in 1984 & 1986. They had no chronic diseases at the time of the beginning of the study. Fifteen years after the study the women would report back about their health and their diet to see where they were at.
The basis of the Mediterranean diet is a lot of fruits and veggies, fish, whole grains, and a lower amount of alcohol and red meats. It also includes more monosaturated fats like those that come from olive oil and less saturated fats. This study was not conducted on men but one of the authors speculates that the results would be the same and there would be no difference between genders.