Cut your risk for heart disease by following a meal plan much like those in the Mediterranean. A recent study found that a diet featuring mostly vegetables, fruits, fish, nuts and olive oil, better known as the Mediterranean diet, reduced the risk of a cardiovascular event by about 30%. Cardiovascular events include heart attacks, strokes, etc.
The researchers randomly assigned 7,500 people to either a Mediterranean diet or a control diet for five years. Most participants were in their 60s and were at higher-than-normal risk for cardiovascular disease. About 80 percent had hypertension and over half had Type 2 diabetes. In addition to eating mainly the foods mentioned above, the Mediterranean diet group ate less than one serving of red meat, had less than one soft drink a day, had fewer than two baked sweets a week, and had at least one meatless day each week. While all of the rates of one of the cardiovascular events dropped, the greatest decline was in the incidence of a stroke.
This study was published recently by the New England Journal of Medicine: //www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmoa1200303