Mediterranean diet decreases risk of death from any cause

Mediterranean diet decreases risk of death from any cause

The benefits of a diet of the type Mediterranean In pursuit of better cardiovascular health, as well as its role in longevity and the prevention of noncommunicable diseases have been well known for some time.

Now, researchers from the Autonomous University of Madrid and the TH Chan School of Public Health of Harvard revealed that adherence to Mediterranean lifestyle habits, along with adequate rest, exercise and socialization were more strongly associated with a lower risk of all-cause and cancer mortality. In addition, they reinforced the idea of associating (the Mediterranean diet) with a lower risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease.

The work, which was published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, was based on analysis of data from the habits of 110,799 members of the UK Biobank, a population-based study in England, Wales and Scotland using the Mediterranean Lifestyle Index (MEDLIFE), which is derived from a lifestyle questionnaire and dietary assessments.

And while many studies have already established the health benefits of a Mediterranean diet and lifestyle, until now little research has been done on the diet outside its region of origin. “This study suggests that Non-Mediterranean populations may adopt the Mediterranean diet using locally available products and adopting the wider Mediterranean lifestyle within their own cultural contexts,” said lead author Mercedes Sotos Prieto, Ramón y Cajal researcher at the University. Autonomous of Madrid and adjunct professor of environmental health at Harvard Chan School. “We are seeing the transferability of lifestyle and its positive effects on health,” he said.

For work, the participants, who had between 40 and 75 years old, provided information about their lifestyle according to the three categories measured by the index: “Mediterranean food consumption” (intake of foods that are part of the Mediterranean diet, such as fruits and whole grains); “Mediterranean dietary habits” (compliance with habits and practices around meals, including limiting salt and consuming healthy drinks); and “physical activity, rest, and social and convivial habits” (adherence to lifestyle habits that include regular naps, exercise, and spending time with friends).

Researchers followed them for nine years. to examine health outcomes. And they saw that among the study population, 4,247 died from all causes; 2,401 died of cancer; and 731 for cardiovascular disease. Analyzing these results alongside MEDLIFE scores, the researchers observed an inverse association between adherence to the Mediterranean lifestyle and mortality risk.

Among the conclusions of the study Association of a Mediterranean lifestyle with all-cause and cause-specific mortality: a prospective study from the UK biobank, the researchers highlighted: “Greater adherence to the Mediterranean lifestyle was associated with lower cancer and all-cause mortality in middle-aged and older British adults in a dose-response form. Adopting a Mediterranean lifestyle adapted to the local characteristics of non-Mediterranean populations may be possible and be part of a healthy lifestyle.”

The Mediterranean diet, identified in the 1950s through a global study of men’s heart health, is an eating pattern based on the habits of Italians, Greeks and other inhabitants of the region.

The scheme is based on the consumption of healthy fats, also known as monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs), which are found in foods such as nuts, fish, and olive oil. In addition, it limits the consumption of animal products.

Thus, the Mediterranean diet is characterized by a high consumption of vegetables, fruits, legumes and cereals, but has, as said, olive oil as practically the only source of monounsaturated fats. Except for that, the diet of southern Europe is really low in saturated fat, includes a moderate consumption of fish, Little meat and poultry, and almost no dairy. Wine – contrary to what prejudice might indicate – is incorporated in very moderate quantities and only with meals.

Unlike other types of diets such as DASH, designed to lower blood pressure and whose guidelines were developed based on scientific research, the Mediterranean diet has evolved without strict guidelines: people simply started following it because they noticed that those who consumed it were healthier.


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