Press J to jump to the feed. Press question mark to learn the rest of the keyboard shortcuts
2.0k
Posted by
MD-PhD-MBA | Clinical Professor/Medicine
6 months ago
Archived

A Mediterranean diet high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts, may make seniors less likely to become frail and help them maintain their health and independence, according to a systematic review and meta-analysis in this week’s Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

144 comments
93% Upvoted
This thread is archived
New comments cannot be posted and votes cannot be cast
Sort by
[deleted]
258 points · 6 months ago

The Standard American Diet is such a disaster that almost any other diet will outperform it.

[deleted]
45 points · 6 months ago(2 children)
[deleted]
11 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
2 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
Comment deleted6 months ago(More than 22 children)

the barriers

Excuse me? Beans and rice are the cheapest things you can get. Frozen veggies are cheap too

29 points · 6 months ago

They were referring to how many people live in food deserts, where they don't have access to quality, healthy foods like the ones recommended.

Seniors living in assisted living or nursing homes don't get much fresh anything. It's all highly processed and microwaved.

When I visit my mother, she's craving fruit, and barely eats, and is therefore getting more frail. It's frustrating.

Cooking requires time, skill, a kitchen, a nearby grocery store and transportation to said grocery store.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)

Is education or tone the barrier? Genuinely curious

32 points · 6 months ago

Price - this is a barrier to some people, but as you said, you can prepare healthy foods at low cost. The problem is not just money, though, a lot of it is...

Lack of Time - preparing healthy foods requires enough time to make them. It's much faster to get something from McDonald's.

Branding/advertising - billions of dollars advertising unhealthy foods speak for themselves.

Palatability - for many, unhealthy food simply tastes better than healthy ones.

Availability - some people live in areas where they cannot access supermarkets or grocery stores without a lot of effort. The places are called 'food deserts'. Concurrently, there can be numerous convenience stores and fast food chains areas creating a 'food swamp'.

6 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

Why is this such a problem in the US? It seems like a surreal situation in which food distributors have decided to act like drug dealers.

9 points · 6 months ago

The US has a relatively low population density and a highly industrialized food system. The cost of delicious, high calorie, ready to eat, easy to ship food is very low. American workers are very busy working long hours and commuting so people choose the little $1 hamburger over a $1 zucchini squash.

This type of decision making has been standard for decades, so any new competing food products have to overcome sourcing challenges. Most farmland is tended by a small number of farmers with the money to employ new technology on vast tracts of land. These farmers only have time to sell bulk to the big food distribution network.

In short, hand picked kale can't come close to competing with corn on a cost per calorie basis from sun to stomach.

OK, but you still have canned and dry goods to work with, and they are cheap. Do local administrations not have any urbanism/planning policy that covers aspects of food provision ?

Nope not usually, most of the US does not have planned policy beyond structural improvements, taxes and defining fines or fees.

3 points · 6 months ago

I don't know about anywhere else, but in the town where I live, there are four grocery stores, none of which are within walking distance (for most people) to the poorer sections of town. If you don't have a car, you'll have a hard time getting groceries unless you buy whatever is available at the nearest convenience store, which is not rice, beans, or fresh fruit and vegetables. Especially true if you have kids; it's not like you could hop on your bike with three children under the age of 5, and head off to the grocery store, and you wouldn't want to bike in winter at all. The closest we have to public transportation is a sort of "shuttle service" that you call to arrange a pickup. I've never used it, but I've been told it takes 45 minutes to get across this small town.

3 points · 6 months ago

I've only ever been in the US so I'm not really sure how involved other countries get with nutrition. Here, if you are poor you get food stamps which covers food ready for storage. (cold food and non-perishables) Recipients shop at regular stores and buy whatever they want within those bounds.

The government dictates where stores can be located and what foods are ok to sell, but the consumer chooses what they buy.

Many consumers live in areas where the nearest grocery store is over a mile away and public transportation is pitiful. American cities (excluding some areas on the east coast) were designed with cars in mind and people who struggle to afford a car don't have good access to anything really.

Fair enough, interesting, thank you

I guarantee you time is not a factor. There are plenty of foods that take minutes and a single pan to cook, and that's still going with 100% fresh ingredients. If you opt for some canned goods included you can make plenty.

At the very least they also require a cooking surface, cooking vessels / utensils, and time. A hamburger from McDonalds requires none of the above. The cost of ingredients is not the only cost barrier of self prepared food. While those other requirements may seem trivial to one with food security, if you are rationing out each dollar to put food on a plate, those other requirements can be substantial barriers.

Electricity, or even access to a kitchen could stop someone cooking beans and rice

[deleted]
3 points · 6 months ago

Headline says fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains nuts and legumes.

Why did you bring rice into the conversation?

1 point · 6 months ago · edited 1 month ago

4e23bb5d4ba3a84e8a72 d5b74a21c4f320e5a1c4 2bafad8580665110a6f6 01ed7cc914b800840a86 116a41f2079b993de4a4 29f4a08443166554b931 e8cf4db388a1719b2ab9 a2b464d8438a1226c9be e7b3cdbab202d6c20d83 8fe3f3bcad237065207c

Italian who visited USA two times and each time for three weeks in a row. Yes I love your country. As many pointed out the main difficulty in eating as I do at home (fresh fruit once a day and fresh vegetable two times a day) was finding the right options. We managed to do it in San Francisco and NY but it was pretty difficult in Nevada, Utah, Arizona and other remote areas. Let me also point out the HUGE portions. Many time I skipped dinner and split my order with my co traveller. In any case the lack of options of most menu is the main problem. Why having some simple grilled vegetables instead of fries is so difficult? Or a simple green salad with oil/salt/vinegar? I had to expressly ask for them as out of menu. I also noticed that in more expensive places vegetables were more available. Here in Italy also the cheapest place (except for fast food) have vegetables option for a very low cost. In any case I want to point out that I asked for these because I was grown up eating many veggies. And this bring back the problem to education and upbringing. Children eat what they parents eat (not what parents tell them). And of course in Italy is normal to spend a bit of time preparing meals at dinner (vegetables require a lot of time to prepare). So my guess is if American parents had more time for family maybe they could cook better and healthier. Just my anecdotal experience.

MD-PhD-MBA | Clinical Professor/Medicine
Original Poster11 points · 6 months ago

Journal Reference:

Gotaro Kojima, Christina Avgerinou, Steve Iliffe, Kate Walters.

Adherence to Mediterranean Diet Reduces Incident Frailty Risk: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 2018;

DOI: 10.1111/jgs.15251

Link: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jgs.15251/full

Abstract

Objectives

To conduct a systematic review of the literature on prospective cohort studies examining associations between adherence to a Mediterranean diet and incident frailty and to perform a meta-analysis to synthesize the pooled risk estimates.

Design

Systematic review and meta-analysis.

Setting

Embase, MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, and Cochrane Library were systematically searched on September 14, 2017. We reviewed references of included studies and relevant review papers and performed forward citation tracking for additional studies. Corresponding authors were contacted for additional data necessary for a meta-analysis.

Participants

Community-dwelling older adults (mean age ≥60).

Measurements

Incident frailty risk according to adherence to a Mediterranean diet.

Results

Two reviewers independently screened the title, abstract, and full text to ascertain the eligibility of 125 studies that the systematic search of the literature identified, and four studies were included (5,789 older people with mean follow-up of 3.9 years). Two reviewers extracted data from the studies independently. All four studies provided adjusted odds ratios (ORs) of incident frailty risk according to three Mediterranean diet score (MDS) groups (0–3, 4–5, and 6–9). Greater adherence to a Mediterranean diet was associated with significantly lower incident frailty risk (pooled OR = 0.62, 95% CI = 0.47–0.82, P = .001 for MDS 4–5; pooled OR = 0.44, 95% CI = 0.31–0.64, P < .001 for MDS 6–9) than poorer adherence (MDS 0–3). Neither significant heterogeneity (I2 = 0–16%, P = .30) nor evidence of publication bias was observed.

Conclusion

Greater adherence to a Mediterranean diet is associated with significantly lower risk of incident frailty in community-dwelling older people. Future studies should confirm these findings and evaluate whether adherence to a Mediterranean diet can reduce the risk of frailty, including in non-Mediterranean populations.

[deleted]
23 points · 6 months ago(2 children)
[deleted]
3 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
7 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
7 points · 6 months ago

tl;dr eating a well rounded diet is good for you. we've known this for decades. we just don't act on it.

[deleted]
3 points · 6 months ago(3 children)
[deleted]
1 point · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
0 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
0 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

If everyone ate like that their whole lives we'd have sognificantly lower rates of obesity and obesity-related illnesses.

Another study in support of a plant based diet.🙂

[deleted]
4 points · 6 months ago(1 child)
[deleted]
1 point · 6 months ago(0 children)
34 points · 6 months ago

However, a Mediterranean diet includes milk and its derivates, fish or meat.

While yes, it does, the Mayo Clinic explains:

The Mediterranean diet emphasizes eating primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts.

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/mediterranean-diet/art-20047801

12 points · 6 months ago

And then right below it:

Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week

That's a big change from animal protein in every meal though. To defend the slightly smug vegetarian.

He doesn't need defending, I just object to calling the Mediterranean diet plant based. Saying people could do with a little less meat... yeah, I can't object to that at all.

PS. Awesome name!

[deleted]
5 points · 6 months ago

How is eating fish and poultry twice a week even remotely comparable to the amount of animal products people on the standard western diet eat?

[deleted]
6 points · 6 months ago

emphasizes eating primarily plant-based foods

They are not mutually exclusive. In fact, it is more in favor of plant based food than fish or poultry.

But couldn't we say that of every diet? Every diet, with perhaps a very few exceptions, are mostly plant based.

I'm not saying that it doesn't advocate more plant based nutrition when compared to the average diet (American/Western European), but I feel that calling this diet plant based is something of a misrepresentation.

Anicdotal, but as a Mediterranean I eat meat almost everyday. The meat is not the main ingredient, but every vegitable/beans stew has meat cuts in it. Eggs and cheese are a staple breakfast foods, and fish is consumed regularly. Calorie wise rice/beans/vegetables/grains count for around 40-60 percent of the calories. Between meals people typically snack on fruits.

[deleted]
-15 points · 6 months ago(19 children)

The emphasis isn't on whatever random thing you say. Fish is an integral part of the Mediterranean diet.

And trying to act like you know for certain that a veg diet is better than an omnivorous one when it's still a hotly debated topic among actual researchers is beyond stupid.

Surprisingly, it’s not! I always thought that too until I looked into it more. The Mayo Clinic says you should only eat fish once or twice a week. A Mediterranean diet is almost completely plant-based!

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/mediterranean-diet/art-20047801

13 points · 6 months ago

I don't really care either way honestly, but that isn't what the site you just listed says.

The Mayo Clinic says you should only eat fish once or twice a week.

Is what you said.

Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week

Is what your link states followed later with

Fish is eaten on a regular basis in the Mediterranean diet.

Is also what your link states. Finally followed by

Go fish. Eat fish once or twice a week. Fresh or water-packed tuna, salmon, trout, mackerel and herring are healthy choices.

While the last statement is a little closer to what you state in the first quote I listed, the "ONLY" twice a week is misleading.

-11 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Source?

https://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-mediterranean-diet-or-a-whole-food-plant-based-diet/#collapseTranscript

Sources are listed on the page. This is also a series of videos, if you're interested in the rest.

[deleted]
-3 points · 6 months ago(0 children)
[deleted]
2 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Huh? I teach comparative anatomy and in most traits of gut anatomy, physiology & tooth design we are almost exactly intermediate between carnivores and herbivores. The low rounded molar cusps, retention of canines (small but still present), molars not ever-growing and relatively short-crowned, partially molariform premolars but lack of diastema, relative length of small intestine, lack of a functional cecum, stomach makes & a unique protein factor for B12 absorption, presence of both sweet detectors and umami detectors on the tongue, and some features of which vitamins we can/can’t make (i.e. we need to eat vitamin C as well vitamin B12), all point to a combination of plant & animal foods.

A regular comp-anat lab exercise consists of teeth & skulls from mammals representing a large variety of diets. Students are asked to sort by dental similarity (without telling them yet which species the skulls are from or what their diet is); students invariably end up sorting out all species by diet without realizing that that’s what they’re doing, and in the process they place the human specimens with pigs and bears, which are also omnivores.

Okay, well I can't say I know as much about it as you clearly do. I did intentionally say "primarily" herbivores, because the digestive tracts of the animals we call omnivores are much closer to those of what I maybe should have called frugivores than is the digestive tract of a typical carnivore. Maybe I didn't communicate clearly/used the wrong terminology.

retention of canines

Looking at our primate cousins tells us that the presence of canines can be explained by social selection pressures.

we need to eat vitamin B12

I believe our frugivorous relatives have this as well, right? Because we don't absorb B12 from the small intestine where it's produced, and because the amount of B12 required by our bodies is in the microgram range, primates can receive enough B12 from traces of soil and feces in their diet. Only in recent history has this changed for humans.

I'm not saying our ancestors haven't been eating meat for millions of years. Archaeological data shows that they have. We just haven't evolved to properly handle a diet high in animal products because the selection pressures that would push us in that direction are relatively weak (cardiovascular disease, for instance, almost always occurs after breeding age and thus can only indirectly contribute to fitness).

But wouldn't humans be in a position of infrequent meat eaters? Dogs are omnivores and they have much larger canines, differently shaped mouths etc. our canines are relatively much smaller than bears, etc. my understanding is that our closest ape relatives infrequently eat animal protein as well.

And why would herbivores desire meat? And your claim is simply not rooted in fact. It’s anecdotal at best. No question people are meat eating disease ridden fat asses these days, but not because of meat. It’s because of excessive carbohydrate consumption - many of these diseases are caused by it, the others are exacerbated by it. Carbohydrate excess consumption is the root of all evil. Consumption of red meat has shrank dramatically in our country (something like 27%) since the 70’s but carbohydrate has skyrocketed, and we are completely out of control fat as fuck because of it. Meat is fine, get off your high horse. The metabolic derangement has nothing to do with meat, and everything to do with bread in every meal - AND snack, while sugar is in every beverage for every meal.

Sources please.

3 points · 6 months ago

Carbohydrates don't make you fat. Calories do. Many vegetables are primarily carbohydrates, but good luck getting fat eating broccoli.

Also, to your first point. People can desire anything they've been raised to consume. That doesn't mean it's natural.

Seriously? Vegetables are PRIMARILY carbohydrates? Man.... that is not true. It’s challenging to get many carbs if done through veggies, easier if you throw in fruit. You are stepping on your own feet in your arguments. How the fuck could you eat a lot of carbs through broccoli? 3 heaping cups of broccoli is only 18 carbs, but it comes with 9 grams of fiber... you can’t get fat from veggies because you simply CAN’T. No one can. carbohydrate dense products (not veggies) will of course fuck your body up. Red meat just simply does not do that. Everything that says saturated fat is bad has 100% through and through been debunked. We consume meat because our ancestors did, and we must to stay healthy because they did. To establish optimum performance it is most easily done by eating meat, veggies, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. The evidence against veganism is stacking up, more and more each day. Take the simple, and true argument - “I don’t eat meat because I hate factory farms, and mistreatment of animals [the only rational]”. Stick to that, because even us human diet eaters will agree with you there. So just eat eggs, and hunt game. Human diet - plants, meat, nuts and seeds.

Comment deleted6 months ago(0 children)
6 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

Gorillas have incisors that are much larger and menacing than humans, and they are primarily herbivores.

4 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

The incisors that are virtually nonexistent in comparison to any other animal that eats meat?

Edit: Oops, I mistook incisors for canines. Still, carnivores have tiny incisors. Large incisors are usually associated with mostly herbivorous rodents.

Oh godddd “the incisors”!!! Have you seen what an actual omnivore’s incisors look like? Google racoon teeth and see if ours look anything like those.

10 points · 6 months ago

However, it's unclear whether people who followed a Mediterranean diet had other factors that may have helped prevent frailty. And the study did not prove that a Mediterranean diet actually caused frailty risk to drop, just that there was an association.

No, another study in support of a varied, nutritious diet.

Except that the best predictors of mortality are: leanbody mass, leg strength, VO2 max, gait speed and grip strength.

PhD | Clinical Psychology
16 points · 6 months ago

I'm not sure how any of that counters the claim about diet.

It doesn't.

However, just like how you can destroy a chair using a fork or a sledgehammer, one tool is much faster and more effective in accomplishing your goal.

Resistance training significantly decreases your frailty in weeks, if not days, and does so to a degree that diet will never accomplish.

You still have to eat something while exercising. We shouldn't be looking for a silver bullet, but rather a combination of effective strategies like increasing exercise and maintaining a proper diet. The two are not mutually exclusive.

That would be great as long as the strategies are promulgated in proportion to their effectiveness.

In my opinion the chance that a senior on a resistance training program would fail to achieve the appropriate bone density adaptation due to their diet is very low.

PhD | Clinical Psychology
12 points · 6 months ago

Again, none of this counters the idea of a plant-based diet being healthy.

Is there a good study linking plant based diets to health? I’ve heard a lot of people saying that plant based diets did not show lower mortality than a healthy diet high in animal protein and fat.

Did you miss that I acknowledged this in my previous comment or do you just have nothing to say?

PhD | Clinical Psychology
2 points · 6 months ago

Of course I didn’t miss the initial part of your comment, but the rest of your comment goes on to cite seemingly irrelevant claims as if that rebutted the idea that a certain diet may be particularly healthy, so I thought it was good to point out again that it was irrelevant.

1 point · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

It's not a counter, I'm stating that there are better predictors of health and those metrics should be focused on over diet. While diet can influence lean body mass, a larger influence is resistance training which most Americans do not perform. So my purpose of my comment is focus on what is a major influence over a minor with regards to health.

Most of what you said is actually irrelevant. Of course the human body the way it is designed, has a lot of strength contained within the pelvic region. So somebody who is in a healthful condition more likely than not has better leg conditioning then somebody in a state that is more prone to end in death. For example someone with type 2 diabetes I imagine does not have the leg strength of somebody in a similar age who has mostly normal biomarkers of Health. You are looking at the results of an event, in this case mortality and trying to draw conclusions without understanding the underlying system that creates the data that you're looking at. The very idea that you could be 80 years old and survived on a diet high in saturated animal fat and animal proteins, with no reliable or consistent way to get vitamins minerals, antioxidants, and other phytonutrients that are mostly contained within plants. A hunk of steak is most likely not going to contain any Miracle compounds like broccoli. So why you are acting so smug seems a little bit unnecessary considering that the conclusions of your argument are absurd.

Conclusions such as? I have no made an argument I have only stated there are better predictors of mortality that have a greater influence diet in and of itself. Even if you talk about the Okinawain diet the biggest factor was not the diet but that the people were farmers.

You are wrong. The fact that you think people cannot look back at your previous post, the one I respond to it see that you are doing nothing but making wild leaves and while grasping at straws just goes to show that some people aren't interested in discussion, they're interested in trying to be right. The sad thing for you though it is is that you are very very wrong. The Oaken now when's natural long jevity is similar to those found at Seventh-day Adventist. Are Seventh-day Adventist all Farmers? You just do not know what you're talking about and you need to stop spreading so much bad information or people are going to think that you had some sort of vested interest in topics about plant-based or majority plant-based diets it has nothing to do with science, but with some other personal motivation.

1 point · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

I know people can look at my pasts posts, do you think I do not know that given the age of my account? I am asking you what absurd conclusions are drawn by saying, 'the best predictors of mortality are: VO2 max, lbm, leg strength, gait speed and grip strength'. To add you approached in an aggressive fashion, it seems more that you are looking to assert and defend an ideological position instead of having a discussion. To add we are talking about preventing fraility and not centarians, the seventh day Adventists have a large community and support system, I don't think you could discount the power of community at relieving stress. To add how would you explain non-seventhday Adventist vegetarians not having an increased lifespan when measuring diet alone?

I am familiar with some of those being predictors (v02 being the biggest) but not others - gait speed and grip strength?

Where can I go to learn more about these?

grip strength and gait speed has to do with injury from falling. as you fall, if you can move your feet fast enough to catch yourself, or grab onto something preventing the fall, you will have a longer life as broken hips seems to be a life ending injury due to complications for many.

3 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

Got it. So it's not so much "are you strong or super-strong?" but "are you getting really feeble?".

grab onto something preventing the fall

Do you have a source for this? My assumption was that grip strength is simply a metric for overall muscle strength.

Stronger muscles = more load shared by soft tissue in a fall.

just memory of something i read.

I can't pull up the studies but I was introduced to these through Andy Galpin and his writings. I could pull out his text 'unplugged' but that's too much effort for an internet comment.

You can get all of those things with a plant based diet. Happy to elaborate if you or anyone else would like

You're correct I'm asserting that a plant based diet isn't a worth while metric by which to judge senor fraility as we have better metrics.

I don't think metric is the word you're looking for here. The study is showing an association that suggests a causal relationship between a plant based diet and frailty.

Wouldn't 'fragility' and 'plant based diets' be the metrics and the study is measuring the relationship between the two?

They're data which may or may not be the cause and effect of each other.

Researchers use metrics to reach a quantitative data point. In the case of frailty and plant based diet they might use something like 'hip fractures per year' or 'grams of plant based food eaten per day / grams of non-plant based food eaten per day' as metrics, respectively.

It's such a great healthy diet. It can also help you live longer!! If anyone wants more info on it I wrote a 5 page paper on it a couple of months ago.

Mind posting the paper or a link to it?

I posted it, and have all of my citations.

0 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

I wrote it for my Anatomy & Physiology class, and also got an A. I was very proud of this. I'll have to copy and paste unfortunately.

Today, I will be discussing the Mediterranean diet, which is one of the most popular diets. It’s known as the healthiest, and has many amazing benefits such as a better health, and even a longer life span. This diet is based off eating a large amount of nuts, vegetables, legumes, seeds, fruits, olive oil, spices, fruits, and herbs; a moderate amount of fish and seafood; a small amount of cheese, yogurts, and eggs; and a very small amount of meats and sweets. Carbohydrates are consumed through whole grain pasta and breads, and many plant products like cereal, rice, and wheat. “The diet has [also] been associated with a lower level of oxidized low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol – the ‘bad’ cholesterol that’s more likely to build up deposits in your arteries (Mayo Clinic Staff) are many types of this diet, but all are very similar to each other, with the main variation being drinking a moderate amount of wine.

The people that this diet is based off of, are the dwellers of the island Crete. Scientists noticed that many people of this island, and the rest of the Mediterranean countries, had “reduced rates of heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, diabetes, and other serious health problems” (Ravn). These facts have been proved by many scientific studies, and there are currently even more studies going on. The first hard evidence of these benefits, was from a 1970 study called the seven countries study. The studies findings showed that Greece had lower rates of cardiovascular disease and cancer than Italy, Finland, Japan, Yugoslavia, the U.S. and the Netherlands. Another benefit of this diet, is that “women who the Mediterranean diet with extra-virgin olive oil and mixed nuts may have a reduced risk of breast cancer” (Mayo Clinic Staff).

The things that are involved with this plan is eating few carbohydrates, and a large amount of vegetables, fruits, legumes, and oils. Meat and sweets are also eaten in very minute

amounts. Many whole grains such as oats, barley, buckwheat, brown rice and corn should be eaten. This diet consists of many oils, such as olive oils, which account for the main source of dietary fat. Avocados and olives are also sources of dietary fats. Normally the only meat eaten is fish and seafood. This diet though isn’t just about al change, but also incorporates physical activity and mealtime sociability. This a whole lifestyle change that can amazing benefits in the long run. The added physical activity makes this diet good for possible weight loss, even though that’s not what the diet is meant for. What can make this diet difficult though, is that there is no one Mediterranean diet. The many variations can make it difficult in choosing what to eat, and how much of it to eat. For this plan to be effective, you have to stick to the diet. Doing it one day, but not the next will have no health effects.

Some misconceptions about the diet, is that it’s only the diet change that makes this diet so healthy, when really, if you don’t change your lifestyle at the same time, there might be a huge change in health. “We need to redefine the Mediterranean diet,” Dr. Malhotra said. “The truth is that it’s a lifestyle. It’s the whole approach. It’s the food. It’s the social interaction. It’s getting the right kind of exercise. It’s being outside. It’s getting sunlight and sunshine” (O’Connor). The Mediterranean’s spend a large amount of time outside in the sun. One vital vitamin that they’re bodies produce when in the sun is vitamin D. This vitamin can help ward off the flu, prevent cancer, and is a vital part of keeping your bones healthy. Another misconception is that all grains are created equal, any grain will work. This isn’t true. The grains that the Mediterranean’s eat are a different type than the ones that Americans eat. Dr. Malhotra, a doctor trying to address misconceptions about this diet, stated that “simple changes can make a dramatic change to their health and vitality in a short space of time” (O’Connor). Even the

slightest change, like adding in more exercise, and eating more fruits and vegetables, will affect your health greatly in a small amount time. A third misconception, is that pasta is fattening and unhealthy. In a recent study that focused on the correlation of pasta intake to lower BMI, smaller wrist circumference, and smaller hip-to-waist ratio, it found that people who had a higher pasta consumption had a smaller wrist circumference, a lower BMI, and a smaller hip-to-waist ratio. This study was conducted on 14,402 men and women of all different ages. Pasta actually helps keep people leaner, and healthy.

Some health risks of the diet, is that calcium intake can be low. This diet doesn’t contain many dairy products other than yogurt and cheese. A lack of calcium in the body can cause the bones to be more susceptible to fractures, osteoporosis, confusion, memory loss, hallucinations, and many other things. If left untreated, this can be fatal. The amount of wine consumed also needs to be watched. Just because one glass is healthy, doesn’t mean that three are. If alcohol is consumed in copious amounts, the risk of esophageal, oral, liver, and laryngeal cancers is increased. The amount of fat that is consumed needs to be watched too. Even though the amount of saturated fats ingested in this diet are considered heart-healthy, you could still be consuming too much fat in your diet. Too much fat intake can cause a higher risk of heart disease. This diet also requires you to be able to cook. Pre-processed foods won’t meet the requirements of carbohydrate, fat, oils, and other essential foods in this diet.

New research has shown that this diet can be beneficial to children. Some studies have shown that children eating the Mediterranean diet are at a lower risk for asthma and allergy symptoms. Another study showed that obese children would be a suitable candidate for this diet.

A study conducted in Mexico where twenty-four of them were assigned to eat a Mediterranean-style diet and twenty-five were assigned a normal diet of junk food, and a high amount of saturated fats for sixteen weeks. The results showed that children on the Mediterranean diet lost weight and started to become healthier, whereas the children on the normal did not. Getting the children to eat the diet can be challenging though. Most children don’t like vegetables and refuse to eat them. Dr. Carolina Vidal stated that the best way to get children to eat them, is to "Slowly introduce fruits and vegetables, and present them consistently with the other foods they eat. Cutting out sugars and fast food meals and make those sporadic as opposed to a regular meal or snack is very helpful” (Howard). There are also some restrictions that go along with giving this diet to children. Wine is a factor in it, and children cannot have wine. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children under the age of four not be fed nuts, as they are a choking hazard, and children under the age of two, only be given whole milk instead of skim milk.

Throughout the world, obesity is becoming a bigger and bigger problem. Dr. Michalis Stagourakis has said that “the usual sniffles and stomachaches of childhood are now interspersed with far more serious conditions: diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol” (Rosenthal). This drastic change has been caused by the change of diet in people. They now eat more saturated fats, carbohydrates, and sweets, instead of fruits, vegetables, and nuts. These foods, which used to be consumed on a daily basis, are now consumed only occasionally. If more people would be eating the Mediterranean diet, many of these diseases would not be occurring in childhood. Many children now have a shorter estimated lifespan than their parents. Obesity is linked to a higher rate of heart disease, diabetes, liver disease, and many other diseases.

There have been many studies where the scientists have modified the diet by adding foods, or taking some out. One example is the PREDIMED study where 7447 individuals were put on one of three diets: a low-fat control group diet, the regular Mediterranean diet with added extra virgin olive oil, and the Mediterranean diet with added nuts. The participants weren’t told to change their calorie intake or to increase physical activity. The study went on for almost five years, and the results found that the diet reduced the risk of coronary heart disease by fifty-to-seventy percent. In a 1999 study where men and women who have suffered heart attacks, where one group was given a Mediterranean-type diet with an Omega-3 rich margarine, and one group a normal Western diet and followed for four years, found that that the individuals on the Mediterranean type diet were seventy-two percent less likely to have gotten another heart attack or die from heart disease.

I found researching this diet very interesting, and thought provoking about how we eat now. It made me realize how unhealthy I as a person eat. I learned a lot about the correlation of what we eat and our health. What we eat truly does have an effect on our health, and can determine how long you live. I found that very interesting, because it isn’t really something that I have never thought about before. I would like to learn more about how this diet effects diabetic individuals, and if it could help improve their diabetes drastically. I was surprised at how many things about your health that switching to this diet could help with. I thought that it would be only a minute amount, but I turned out to be very wrong.

Bibliography:

Nordqvist, Christian. “Mediterranean diet: Facts, health benefits, and meal tips.” Medical News Today, MediLexicon International, 19 July 2017, www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/149090.php.

Staff, Mayo Clinic. “Mediterranean diet: A heart-Healthy eating plan.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 3 Nov. 2017, www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/mediterranean-diet/art-20047801.

Ravn, Karen. "Eat Like in Crete." Los Angeles Times, 21 Nov, 2011, pp. E.1, SIRS Issues Researcher, https://sks.sirs.com.

O'Connor, Anahad. “The Mediterranean Diet: Is It the Food or the Lifestyle?” The New York Times, The New York Times, 22 Oct. 2015, well.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/10/22/the-mediterranean-diet-is-it-the-food-or-the-lifestyle/.

Merelli, Annalisa. “Upending years of misconceptions, researchers have found ...” Quartz.com, 6 Aug. 2016, www.bing.com/cr?IG=A9B9244215F54F31AD39F0610BE3368D&CID=2BD5AE5EB75D675707F9A564B65B66D4&rd=1&h=rETC23VSPQ-JU2x4ixiAOFzqd6CdYZwjym7RpCTI7hA&v=1&r=https%3a%2f%2fqz.com%2f723645%2fupending-years-of-misconceptions-researchers-have-found-that-eating-pasta-can-keep-us-lean%2f&p=DevEx,5065.1.

Staff, Everyday Health. “What Is the Mediterranean Diet? - Everyday Health.” Edited by Sanjai Sinha, Everydayhealth.com, www.bing.com/cr?IG=9D21C9103BD14F8385F4D494799CE5D6&CID=36B0C6A97DA864AF14C5CD937CAE65DE&rd=1&h=1QQdUca-NJK4DkUAUATrtcsYFurzueDyk2dQDjGNti0&v=1&r=https%3a%2f%2fwww.everydayhealth.com%2fmediterranean-diet%2fguide%2f&p=DevEx,5067.1.

Khan, April, and Ana Gotter. “Hypocalcemia (Calcium Deficiency Disease).” Healthline, Healthline Media, 25 Aug. 2017, www.healthline.com/health/calcium-deficiency-disease.

Howard, Jacqueline. "Is the Mediterranean Diet Good for Kids, Too?" CNN Wire Service, 30 Jan, 2017, SIRS Issues Researcher,https://sks.sirs.com.

Rosenthal, Elisabeth. "Fast Food Hits Mediterranean; a Diet Succumbs." New York Times (New York, NY), 24 Sep, 2008, pp. A1+, SIRS Issues Researcher, https://sks.sirs.com.

Gunnars, Kris. “5 Studies on The Mediterranean Diet - Does it Really Work?” Healthline.com, 29 May 2017, www.bing.com/cr?IG=7B30EFC1DB1D4E9CAAC99AA64A4B94E2&CID=26946F04C0E364473377643EC1E56587&rd=1&h=pf0E1G6GIaUx7-R--NhAKJa295va4G7VxjE2j3resl8&v=1&r=https%3a%2f%2fwww.healthline.com%2fnutrition%2f5-studies-on-the-mediterranean-diet&p=DevEx,5068.1.

Martinez-Gonzalez, Miguel ngel, et al. “COHORT PROFILE Cohort Profile: design and methods of the ...” Academic.oup.com, 20 Dec. 2010,

www.bing.com/cr?IG=AB33761DF1134C199DFFD0353EE7AEAC&CID=0ED3246A26B76D15072B2F5027B16C09&rd=1&h=Zz7hDuj-HLCUgo04-EPvVQko6VBx98my2S33OWiztfM&v=1&r=http%3a%2f%2fwww.unav.edu%2fdepartamento%2fpreventiva%2ffiles%2ffile%2fdocumentos%2fpredimed%2farticulos%2f2010%2fInt-J-Epidemiol-2010_Martinez-

[deleted]
2 points · 6 months ago · edited 6 months ago

It's such a great healthy diet. It can also help you live longer!!

Got any studies on that that last a significant amount of time. I have no doubt you feel better having followed the diet. But you can't really say what you would feel like if you had not been on the diet.

And I'm 100% sure there are no real scientific studies that would ever claim this diet would help you live longer. No real scientist would ever make that claim. They'd use more reserved language like "could potentially lead to a longer life." Only a huckster, that is trying to sell you something, would make such a bold claim. They would never say "this diet will definitely make you live longer" unless they are getting a cut of what is being sold.

If it's healthy and reduces cardiovascular disease etc., it'll obviously reduce deaths from heart attacks etc. and increase the average lifespan.

Other plant based diets like the Okinawan diet or DASH diet have been shown to reduce cardiovascular disease, too, at least compared to the standard American diet.

But then again, fat based ketogenic diets that aren't necessarily plant based have been linked to improvements in cardiovascular disease, occurence of cancer etc. in several studies, too. There's a huge variety of dietetic approaches that are vastly superior to the processed food crap that is the SAD.

When you go to the Mediterranean you see people in their 90's who are getting around like 50 year olds from America. They are incredibly active and alive. As a dietitian who has also lost 40 pounds eating Mediterranean and feel better than every, I highly recommend the diet. If you are interested in lots of traditional recipes go to www.mediterraneanliving.com or check out this cookbook from the Greek island of Crete where they have the highest longevity rates in the world: Foods of Crete: traditional recipes from the healthiest people in the world by Koula Barydakis, a chef from Crete and Bill Bradley (me), Registered Dietitian.

This is why you see people in the Mediterranean who are in their 90's (and above) strong and healthy. They are doing things that many people in their 60's here cannot do. They are also still working the land, picking olives, grapes and other foods. They are quite active. For traditional Mediterranean Diet recipes check out www.mediterraneanliving.com.

[deleted]
0 points · 6 months ago(0 children)

Un buen plato de lentejas, puchero, pasta un par de veces por semana, pescado una vez y en fin de semana lo que quieras.

Community Details

19.0m

Subscribers

25.6k

Online

This community is a place to share and discuss new scientific research. Read about the latest advances in astronomy, biology, medicine, physics, social science, and more. Find and submit new publications and popular science coverage of current research.

Create Post
r/science Rules
1.
Must be peer-reviewed research
2.
No second-hand summaries, reviews, or reposts
3.
No editorialized, sensationalized or biased titles
4.
Research must be <6 months old
5.
No off-topic comments
6.
No jokes or memes
7.
No abusive or offensive comments
8.
No anecdotal comments
9.
Not scientific or dismissive of established work
10.
No medical advice
Upcoming AMAs
/r/Science Ask Me Anything

We've discontinued our 'Ask Me Anything' Q&A series. You can view all the previous AMAs below.

Science Verified User Program

Do you have a college degree in a scientific field? Get flair in /r/science to indicate your expertise!

Related Communities
r/EverythingScience

119,542 subscribers

r/askscience

15,712,675 subscribers

r/labrats

28,741 subscribers

Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services or clicking I agree, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.