What are the benefits of a Healthy Mediterranean Diet? Well, it was already known that a healthy Mediterranean diet that is rich in vegetables and fruits, extra-virgin olive oil, nuts and legumes as well as other staples of healthy eating is able to drastically reduce the number of heart attacks in individuals. Existing studies have shown that people following a Mediterranean diet are 30% less likely to fall victims of strokes or heart attacks or other heart-related diseases.
However, a new study has shown that the diet is also capable of sharply reducing chances of breast cancer in women—especially a Mediterranean diet which is rich in olive oil. This study evolved out of PREDIMED, a landmark clinical trial in Spain, tells us that women who follow an olive oil-rich Mediterranean diet stand at far lesser risks of contacting breast cancer than women following simply a low-fat diet.
Let us look a bit closer at this. The trial was carried out with three groups of women aged 60 to 80 and there were in all 4,300 women who participated in the trial. The first group was put on an olive oil-rich diet, the second group again on a Mediterranean diet but with extra servings of megs and nuts and third group simply on a low-fat diet.
At the end of the trial, 35 women were found with breast cancer and it was shown that those in the olive oil diet had 62% lesser chances of breast cancer. There was not much of a difference when it came to the other groups.
As it happens though, we cannot say that these findings are definitive since other factors besides diet could have led to the disease, too, and at any rate, no definite conclusion can be drawn on the basis of a paltry number of 35 cases.
However, according to the physicians working in the field, it should be little surprise if it is really found that an olive-oil rich healthy Mediterranean diet succeeds in bringing down the chances of breast cancer. At any rate, they opine, that the upsides of such a diet are huge compared to almost no downside.
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