Mediterranean Diet and its effect on heart attack and stroke risk

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Mediterranean Diet and its effect on heart attack and stroke risk Have you ever been to Greece, or how about Italy? Of course, there are other countries that are by the Mediteranean which is known for its healthy diet of rich in olive oil, nuts, beans, fish, fruits and vegetables, with the addition of wine at meal time. Why do these people live longer, have healthier lives and what do they eat that helps them achieve this. To be fair, in many countries, people do more exercise by riding bicycles to work, walking more from place to place (The Amalfi Coast for example has many homes that are built on hills and require walking to get to them). The NY Times discusses a new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine. What they found out is that diets that approximate what is eaten in the Mediteranean help people stay healthier and live longer (no mystery that our American diet, lifestyle and medical systems needs an adjustment). The other things that the article does not talk about is how the food is farmed, organic in many cases and in many places in Europe, it is the quality, not the quantity of the food that is more satisfying. Read the article here Mediterranean Diet Shown to Ward Off Heart Attack and Stroke About 30 percent of heart attacks, strokes and deaths from heart disease can be prevented in people at high risk if they switch to a Mediterranean diet rich in olive oil, nuts, beans, fish, fruits and vegetables, and even drink wine with meals, a large and rigorous new study has found. The findings, published on The New England Journal of Medicine's Web site on Monday, were based on the first major clinical trial to measure the diet's effect on heart risks. The magnitude of the diet's benefits startled experts. The study ended early, after almost five years, because the results were so clear it was considered unethical to continue. The diet helped those following it even though they did not lose weight and most of them were already taking statins, or blood pressure or diabetes drugs to lower their heart disease risk. "Really impressive," said Rachel Johnson, a professor of nutrition at the University of Vermont and a spokeswoman for the American Heart Association. "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 death. At the end of the day, that is what really matters." read more