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Mediterranean diet reduces by 40% the risk of having diabetes

People who follow a Mediterranean diet enriched with extra virgin olive oil will reduce by 40% the risk of having diabetes, and by 18% if the diet is enriched with nuts. This is one of the main conclusions of a scientific study conducted by 18 research centres throughout Spain on 3,500 people. Jordi Salas-Salvadó, Director of this study, said that such results would change the usual perception of diabetes prevention. The Mediterranean diet is not solely efficient against diabetes. Indeed, the results showed that following such a diet also reduced by 30% the chances of contracting cardiovascular diseases.

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11 January 2014 04:46 PM

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ACN

Reus (ACN).- People who follow a Mediterranean diet enriched with extra virgin olive oil will reduce by 40% the risk of having diabetes, and by 18% if the diet is enriched with nuts. This is one of the main conclusions of a Catalan-lead scientific study, conducted on 3,500 people and involving 18 research centres throughout Spain. It is part of a wider nutritional intervention research called PREDIMED. The Director of the study on diabetes, Dr. Jordi Salas-Salvadó, said that such results would change the usual perception of diabetes prevention. “We already knew lifestyle played a very significant part, as does a healthy or rich diet, losing weight or doing physical exercise, but until now we did not know what prevented diabetes” he explained. The Mediterranean diet is not solely efficient against diabetes. Indeed, the scientific study previously showed that following such a diet also reduced by 30% the chances of contracting cardiovascular diseases.


The study, which was published on Monday in the medical journal Annals of Internal Medicine, was conducted on 3,500 people aged between 55 and 80 years-old, who did not have diabetes at the start of the research. Participants were assigned three diets: a Mediterranean diet enriched with 50 millilitres of olive oil, a Mediterranean diet enriched with 30 grams of nuts - walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds, or a low-fat diet.

One of the study’s main conclusions is that the Mediterranean diet enriched with extra virgin olive oil reduces by 40% the risk of having diabetes, while the Mediterranean diet enriched with nuts reduces such a risk by 18%. According to the authors, the scientific research demonstrates for the very first time that adopting a healthy dietary pattern like the Mediterranean diet is capable, in itself, of preventing diabetes.

 A Catalan-led study conducted by 18 research groups across Spain

In the study on diabetes 18 research groups were involved throughout Spain. Among such participants were the research teams of the Institut d'Investigació Sanitària Pere i Virgili and the Rovira i Virgili University (both in the Province of Tarragona, southern Catalonia), the CIBER Obesity and Nutrition Department of the Institute of Health Carlos III, led by Dr.Salas-Salvadó, with the collaboration of the Catalan Government’s Primary Care Centre

Network, directed by Dr. Josep Basora. This research was part of PREDIMED, a nutritional intervention study dedicated to the Mediterranean diet and which has lasted for the past 9 years, involving over 7,400 people. It is led by Ramon Estruch, Senior Consultant at the Hospital Clínic of Barcelona and is being carried out by 18 research groups across Spain, involving over 150 searchers.

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  • Bottles of virgin olive oil fron Catalonia (By ACN)

  • Botles of virgin olive oil from Catalonia (by ACN)