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Mediterranean diet reduces heart attacks and strokes

04/05/2016

Mediterranean diet reduces heart attacks and strokesLast year, we told you about the benefits to your gut of following a Mediterranean diet. Now, research published in the European Heart Journal says that a Mediterranean diet is better for people with heart disease than avoiding what's considered unhealthy in the so-called 'Western diet'.

The new research shows that a Mediterranean diet, which includes large amounts of fruit, vegetables, fish and unrefined foods, can decrease the risk of stroke and heart attack in people who already have heart disease.

Likewise, the study found that avoiding the unhealthy aspects of a Western diet, such as sweets, sugary drinks and deep-fried foods, also reduced a person's risk of cardiac issues.

For the study, researchers from Auckland City Hospital at the University of Auckland in New Zealand analysed the dietary data of some 15,482 people with stable coronary artery disease across 39 countries globally.

They found that fewer heart attacks and strokes were witnessed among those people who eat Mediterranean foods. In fact, for every 100 people eating Mediterranean foods, there were three fewer strokes, heart attacks or deaths than seen among the 100 people who consumed the least amount of healthy foods.

Lead researcher Prof. Ralph Stewart said: "The research suggests we should place more emphasis on encouraging people with heart disease to eat more healthy foods, and perhaps focus less on avoiding unhealthy foods."
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