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Live Longer With the Mediterranean Diet: Study’s Show a 20% Lower Death Risk

Daniel Kim Views  

A study has found that following a Mediterranean diet can reduce the risk of death from all causes by more than 20%.

On the 3rd, a team led by Dr. Shafqat Ahmad from Harvard Medical School revealed the results of a 25-year tracking study on the diet and mortality risk of over 25,000 healthy American women in the medical journal JAMA Network Open.

The research team stated that low molecular metabolites and inflammatory biomarkers contribute the most to reducing mortality risk with a Mediterranean diet, with monounsaturated fats and Body Mass Index (BMI) also important factors.

Currently, associations such as the American Heart Association, the European Society of Cardiology, and the Australian National Heart Foundation recommend a Mediterranean diet for improving heart metabolism and cardiovascular diseases. The Mediterranean diet mainly consumes fruits, vegetables, nuts, olive oil, whole grains, fish, and seafood.

The research team investigated the adherence to a Mediterranean diet of 25,315 healthy women (average age 54.6 years) who participated in the Women’s Health Study conducted from 1993 to 1996 and tracked changes in mortality risk from all causes and heart health-related factors for an average of 24.7 years.

A point was given if the intake of nine major dietary components of the Mediterranean diet such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, olive oil, and monounsaturated fats was higher than the median. These were divided into groups of 0-3, 4-5, and 6-9 points according to their scores. During the tracking observation period (2018-2023), 3,879 people died.

The analysis revealed that the group with a Mediterranean diet score of 6-9 points had a 23% lower risk of death from all causes than the 0-3 point group, and the 4-5 point group also had a 16% lower risk. The 6-9 point group had a particularly 20% lower risk of death from cancer and a 17% lower risk of death from cardiovascular diseases than the 0-3 point group.

The contribution of biomarkers to the reduction in mortality risk was highest for low molecular metabolites at 14.8%, followed by inflammatory biomarkers at 13.0%, lipoproteins rich in triglycerides at 10.2%, BMI at 10.2%, and insulin resistance at 7.4%.

The research team said that these results show that the better you adhere to a Mediterranean diet, the lower the risk of death from all causes by 23%, with several factors affecting heart metabolism playing a role.

However, they added, “The potential benefits of a Mediterranean diet are still largely unexplained,” and “Future research needs to investigate the factors mediating the Mediterranean diet and lower mortality rate, along with cause-specific mortality rates.”

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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