Recent study led by King’s College in the UK shows the Mediterranean diet can reduce risk of heart disease and lower blood pressure, combined with physical exercise. Also prior studies have shown that the Mediterranean diet can also lower the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
What is the Mediterranean diet?
- Rich antioxidant-rich foods inspired by Greece, Spain, Italy, and Morocco
- Focuses mainly of fruits, vegetables, legumes, olive oil, fish, and a choosing healthier types of fats instead of saturated fats
- Reduce consumption of red meat to a few times a month
- Poultry and fish twice a week
- Selecting olive oil over saturated fats
- Moderate amount of red wine
Health Benefits of a Mediterranean Diet
How does the Mediterranean diet lower blood pressure?
By eating leafy greens rich in nitrites and nitrates, also known as unsaturated fatty acids, nitro fatty acids are formed to help lower blood pressure by blocking the production of an enzyme known as soluble epoxide hydrolase. A dilation of blood vessels can also occur that will result in lower blood pressure.
Mediterranean diet reduces risk of Alzheimer’s disease by 40%
In 2006, a study by a Columbia University Medical Center researcher, Nikolaos Scarmeas, MD found that New Yorkers on the Mediterranean diet were 40% less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease. A recent study of 1,410 older men and women living in France confirmed that while on the Mediterranean diet, many had a slower memory decline.
Mediterranean diet reduces risk of Parkinson’s disease by 46%
New research published in the European Journal of Neurology, finds that people who were on the Mediterranean diet were 46% less at risk for Parkinson’s. Consuming high levels of antioxidants, such as fruits and vegetables helped them lived a healthier life.
Overall, most foods present in the Mediterranean diet are rich in nitro fatty acids that can help lower blood pressure, increase heart health, and decrease risk of other serious diseases. The diet promotes making healthier choices to improve overall health and morality.