Can a Mediterranean diet suit American tastes?

While a Mediterranean-type diet has long been touted as heart-healthy, it was only recently that substantial research has been done to validate this claim, said experts with the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.

“The research recently completed in Spain was not based on anecdotal evidence or observation,” said Dr. Sharon Robinson, AgriLife Extension nutrition specialist, College Station. “For this study, a significant number of people were given different diets to follow for a substantial length of time and were carefully monitored. It also involved extensive collaboration among academic, medical and health-care entities.”

Results of this five-year study involved almost 7,500 people and were published by the New England Journal of Medicine. Participants were ages 55 to 80, just over half of whom were women. Almost all participants were overweight or obese, and while heart-disease-free at the beginning of the study, all were at high risk for heart disease. In addition to their weight, participants’ health-related problems included type 2 diabetes, smoking, high cholesterol and hypertension.

Continue reading via AgriLife Today.