The Mediterranean Diet reduces the risk of mortality also among those over 65

The Mediterranean Diet reduces the risk of mortality also among those over 65

2018/04/09 - A research of the Department of Epidemiology and Prevention of the Mediterranean Neurological Institute (IRCCS-Neuromed) in Pozzilli (Molise, Italy) shows that an increasing adherence to the Mediterranean Diet reduces the risk of general mortality of people over 65 by 5%. Among the foods capable, in a Mediterranean pattern, of offering greater protection, extra virgin olive oil, stands out.
The study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, analyzed the relationship between the Mediterranean Diet and mortality in a sample of more than 5,000 people over 65 years, recruited for the Moli-Sani project. But, in addition, the researchers also examined other epidemiological studies published so far in several countries of the world, for a total of 12,000 subjects analyzed.

The main author of the research, Neuromed epidemiologist Maria Laura Bonaccio, details that "the novelty of this study is that the focus is on people over 65 years. We have known for a long time that the Mediterranean Diet is effective in reducing the risk of mortality in the general population, but we still did not know how much it could be for the elderly as well."

According to Bonaccio, "the data from the Moli-sani study clearly show that the traditional model of the Mediterranean Diet, rich in fruits, vegetables, fish, legumes, extra virgin olive olive oil and cereals, meat and dairy products and a moderate consumption of wine with the meals, is associated with a significant 25% average reduction in mortality from all causes, with benefits, in particular, for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular mortality."

On the other hand, Licia Iacoviello, director of the Laboratory of Molecular and Nutritional Epidemiology of Neuromed and Professor at the University of Insubria (Varese, Italy), highlights the fact that the study was carried out through the technique of meta- analysis, linking the data of the Moli-sani project with the results of six other studies carried out in populations over 65 years old from other countries. "This has allowed us to see that an increasing adherence to the Mediterranean Diet allows reducing the risk of general mortality by 5%, in a dose-response relationship, that is, progressive. In other words, the more the Mediterranean dietary pattern is followed, the greater the benefits in terms of reducing the risk of mortality."
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