• The Mediterranean diet is widely acclaimed for its health benefits
  • It reduces the risk of high cholesterol, diabetes, dementia, memory loss, depression & breast cancer
  • A new study pointed out that the diet alters the gut microbiome and aids longevity

The Mediterranean diet is widely acclaimed for its health benefits such as reducing the risks of heart diseases, stroke, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s. A new study found that adhering to this diet for just one year altered the microbiome of elderly people that improved brain function and aided longevity.

The research, published in the BMJ Journal Gut, demonstrated that the Mediterranean diet can inhibit the production of inflammatory chemicals, which results in loss of cognitive function and prevent chronic diseases including cancer, diabetes, and atherosclerosis from developing.

The study included 612 older adults from France, Italy, Poland, UK, and the Netherlands. The participants’ gut microbiome was analyzed. While 323 of them were made to adhere to a special diet for a year, the rest were asked to continue the same diet they normally did.

At the end of the year, the researchers noted that those individuals who had followed the Mediterranean diet saw beneficial changes to their gut microbiome. While there was a loss of bacterial diversity and reduction in the production of harmful inflammatory markers including interleukin-17 and C-reactive protein, there was a growth of beneficial bacteria associated with memory and brain function.

The Mediterranean diet was found to boost ‘Keystone’ species critical for a stable gut ecosystem which also slowed frailty signs including handgrip strength and walking speed.

"It's more than a diet, it's a lifestyle," CNN Health quoted Atlanta registered dietitian Rahaf Al Bochi from an earlier interview."It also encourages eating with friends and family, socializing over meals, mindfully eating your favorite foods, as well as mindful movement and exercise," he added.

The current discovery about Mediterranean diet aiding longevity isn’t really surprising. The diet has already been proven to aid several health benefits such as reducing the risk of high cholesterol, diabetes, dementia, memory loss, depression, and breast cancer. It has also been associated with stronger bones, healthier heart, and weight loss.

The Mediterranean diet features simple plant-based foods with a major focus on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, seeds, nuts and in smaller portions- eggs, poultry, dairy, and meat. It heavily emphasizes on extra virgin olive oil and against refined sugar and refined flour.

The Mediterranean Diet
A new study has found that following the Mediterranean diet can in fact lower the risk of cardiovascular disease Wikipedia