Posted on Mar 22, 2011, 6 a.m.
Meta-analysis of 50 published studies involving 534,906 participants confirms the effects of the Mediterranean diet on waist circumference, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure, and glucose metabolism.
The Mediterranean diet is rich in cereals, fruits, legumes and whole grains, fish and olive oil. Numerous previous studies have shown those who follow the Mediterranean diet live longer, have less heart disease, and a reduced risk of cancers. Demosthenes Panagiotakos, from Harokopio University (Greece), and colleagues completed a meta-analysis of 50 published studies of the Mediterranean diet involving 534,906 participants. The researchers found that adherence to the Mediterranean diet was associated with reduced risk of Metabolic Syndrome. As well, the Mediterranean diet was found to be protective against specific components of Metabolic Syndrome – such as waist circumference, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure, and glucose metabolism. The team urges that: “These results are of considerable public health importance, because this dietary pattern can be easily adopted by all population groups and various cultures and cost-effectively serve for primary and secondary prevention of the [Metabolic Syndrome] and its individual components.”
Christina-Maria Kastorini, Haralampos J. Milionis, Katherine Esposito, Dario Giugliano, John A. Goudevenos, Demosthenes B. Panagiotakos.”The Effect of Mediterranean Diet on Metabolic Syndrome and its Components: A Meta-Analysis of 50 Studies and 534,906 Individuals.” J. Am. Coll. Cardiol., March 15, 2011; 57: 1299 - 1313.