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Mediterranean Diet Deterrent To Heart Disease, Study Claims

Mediterranean Diet Shows Signs Of Fighting Heart Disease

A study on the Mediterranean diet has revealed it to be an effective deterrent in the fight against heart disease, according to a report from The New York Times on Monday, February 25.

The study, first published online by The New England Journal of Medicine, showed that following a diet dense in olive oil, fish, beans, nuts, vegetables, and fruits, can result in a 30 percent reduction in the amount of heart attacks, strokes, and deaths instigated by heart disease.

The study also supported drinking wine with a meal.

Rachel Johnson, professor of nutrition at the University of Vermont and American Heart Association (AHA) spokesperson called the results “really impressive” in comments to The NY Times.

“And the really important thing … the coolest thing … is that they used very meaningful endpoints. They did not look at risk factors like cholesterol or hypertension or weight. They looked at heart attacks and strokes and deaths. At the end of the day, that is what really matters,” Johnson added.

The study was conducted by Dr. Ramon Estruch, professor of medicine at the University of Barcelona, and his team, who selected 7,447 participants considered at high risk for heart disease.

The participants were broken up into three groups. One group followed a low-fat diet and the other two stuck to the Mediterranean diet.

The Mediterranean diet groups produced remarkably superior results to the low-fat group, the study found.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that each year heart disease kills more than 600,000 in the United States alone, which accounts for 25 percent of recorded deaths.

Following the new study’s findings, the Mediterranean diet could reduce that number to around 420,000.

Heart disease is a growing concern for baby boomers, who, according to a recent study, suffer from obesity by an alarming rate.

The study offers insight on how to avoid the risk factors that bring on heart disease as well as a healthier alternative than calcium supplements for men looking to preserve their health through the aging process.

Estruch admitted, however, that it isn’t known what effects the Mediterranean diet would have for individuals at low risk.

Have you followed the Mediterranean diet? Do you believe it is a more effective tool than low-fat?

[Image via ShutterStock]

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