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Mediterranean diet may lower risk of diabetes
Date:3/27/2014

WASHINGTON (March 27, 2014) Adoption of a Mediterranean diet is linked to a lower risk of diabetes, especially among people at high risk for cardiovascular disease, according to research to be presented at the American College of Cardiology's 63rd Annual Scientific Session.

Data from the first pooled analysis of studies evaluating the possible role of the Mediterranean diet on diabetes development show that adherence to this diet was associated with a 21 percent reduced risk of diabetes as compared to the control dietary groups. This reduced risk was even more pronounced among people at high risk for cardiovascular disease among whom diabetes prevention is especially critical. The analysis showed that patients in this subgroup were almost 27 percent less likely to develop diabetes compared to controls.

"Adherence to the Mediterranean diet may prevent the development of diabetes irrespective of age, sex, race or culture," said Demosthenes Panagiotakos, Ph.D., professor at Harokopio University, Athens, Greece, and lead investigator of this meta-analysis. "This diet has a beneficial effect, even in high risk groups, and speaks to the fact that it is never too late to start eating a healthy diet."

The researchers systematically reviewed 19 original research studies that followed more than 162,000 participants for an average of 5.5 years. These studies spanned European and non-European populations, which Panagiotakos said is important as most of the published studies have been European-based and there has been some question of possible confounding factors in these regions, including genetics, the environment, lifestyle and lower stress levels.

But researchers found that regardless of the study population European or non-European or high or low risk of cardiovascular disease the association between the Mediterranean diet and lower risk of diabetes remained. While there is no set Mediterranean diet, it commonly emphasizes fresh
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Contact: Beth Casteel
bcasteel@acc.org
202-375-6275
American College of Cardiology
Source:Eurekalert

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