Health And Medicine

Mediterranean Diet Can Slow Down Aging And Is The Key To A Longer Life

Mediterranean diet can slow down aging and lengthens telomeres as its components are rich in antioxidants and have well known anti-inflammatory effects.

Evidence has shown that the Mediterranean diet is one of the healthiest diets on the planet. Now, a new study led by Immaculata De Vivo, associate professor at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston and Harvard Medical School, has shown that following the Mediterranean diet may be the key to a longer life.

Taking any diet rich in fruits, nuts, vegetables, beans and peas, unrefined grains, olive oil and fish, also a glass of red wine with meals, suppresses high proportion of saturated fatty acids to a minimum, and routinely following this diet could to some extend lead to a longer life expectancy.

The researchers examined nutritional data from 4,676 healthy middle-aged women who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study and found that women who ate a Mediterranean diet had longer telomeres – the end of a eukaryotic chromosome, which consists of repeated sequences of DNA that protects the chromosome against gene loss and decay.

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Having shorter telomeres means shorter life expectancy and even in healthy people, telomeres shorten with age. And as they shorten, there comes a greater risk of cancer, atherosclerosis, cardiopathy, and liver disease. Certain factors like obesity, smoking, drinking sodas have been found to accelerate shortening of telomeres, however as the new research suggests, the Mediterranean diet can decelerate telomeres shortening.

The key components of Mediterranean diet such as olive oil, fish, and fruits are rich in antioxidants and have well-known anti-inflammatory effects. The researchers also examined whether the women who followed this diet had longer telomeres.

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The researchers set the diet score rated on a scale of 0 to 9 for each participant; a higher score signifies a closer resemblance to the Mediterranean diet. De Vivo said each one point change in diet score corresponded an average of 1.5 years of telomere aging.

Telomere shortening is irreversible but healthy “lifestyle choices can help prevent accelerated shortening,” says De Vivo.

So this is it. Following Mediterranean diet is the key not only to longevity, but also to reduced-risk of having major cardiovascular diseases and other chronic diseases.

31 comments

  1. Pingback: Mediterranean Diet Can Slow Down Aging And Is The Key To A Longer Life | Alain V Berrebi's Blog
  2. I’ve heard this from several other sources, and apparently there’s a small island in the Mediterranean (Sardinia, I think) where there’s a bunch of centurians running around. It’s great to know that there’s a diet out there that can help maintain health…the hard part is spreading the word and winning the shouting match over all of the fad diets and the advertisers who are spending millions to sell junk food. Great article!

  3. Being of Italian origin, I love the Mediterranean diet, so it’s great to know that it not only tastes good but has huge health benefits also, with the added bonus that a glass of red wine is part and parcel of it 😉 Thanks for liking my “Perception switching” post, although from your blog I am guessing you thought the subject matter was something else 😉 Well done with your research and blog. Cheers again, Sam

  4. A very interesting and informative article. Thanks for all the good news. Hope your New Year’s is a good one, keep up the great writing, and I’ll read you later.

  5. I really should eat more vegetables, but basically follow this kind of diet with cooking and planning meals for the family. But I absolutely love Indian dishes too, especially lentil dhal and chick-pea curry, which I do cook with veges like leek and peas, capsicum, pumpkin and potatoes. The Indian spices I use like turmeric are apparently beneficial as well and maybe this could be a suggestion for a new post!

  6. I definitely will consider this regimen. I seem to already be gravitating towards this type of diet, since my main staples are fruit, nuts, and vegetables, and I eat very little meat or pasta. I will look further into this. Thank you for sharing.

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