The Healthiest Diet Ever
What’s the best diet? No question, according to dozens of recent studies: The Mediterranean diet wins, hands down. It seems there’s nothing that eating the Mediterranean way cannot do to improve your health.
New reports show that the Med diet — high in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish, nuts and olive oil; moderate in red wine; and low in meat and refined grains — can help:
- Prevent various cancers. One expert says shifting to a Mediterranean diet could cut colon cancers 25%, breast cancers 15%, and prostate, pancreatic and uterine cancers 10% in the United States and other highly developed Western countries.
- Promote healthy arteries. It improves cholesterol and arterial functioning, and reduces inflammation and homocysteine, all players in cardiovascular disease.
- Prevent age-related memory loss and dementia. This includes Alzheimer’s disease.
- Cut the risk of high blood pressure.
- Promote longevity. In one 10-year study of those over age 70, eating a Mediterranean diet cut the odds of death from all causes by 23%.
Why is the Med diet so good for you? Top reasons: high antioxidants and fiber in plant foods; good fat in olive oil and fish; and less bad fat, less iron and fewer carcinogens (from eating fewer animal foods).
This EatSmart column is reprinted from USAWEEKEND Magazine and is copyrighted by Jean Carper. It cannot be reprinted without permission from Jean Carper.