There are powerful forces in life - diabetes is certainly one, with over 20 million people in the United States affected. But, there are other powerful forces about that don't really care much for the likes of diabetes. Forces like olive oil, fruits and vegetables. Yeah, the good stuff that comes straight out of the ground...
The advantages of the Mediterranean diet are already well known. It's a major player in protecting against cardiovascular disease, and it is especially helpful for people who've already experienced a heart attack. Now, new research out of Spain says the Mediterranean diet also protects against type 2 diabetes.
Researchers followed over 13,000 graduates of the University of Navarra over a several-year period. They initially filled out a highly detailed questionnaire about their dietary habits. Then, every two years, they again filled out a questionnaire to assess their eating habits, lifestyle choices, risk factors and medical conditions.
The people who followed the Mediterranean diet most closely were the big health winners. Overall, they showed an 83 percent lower risk of developing diabetes compared to those who did not follow the Mediterranean diet. That's a huge difference.
Interestingly, those who benefited the most were actually at a higher initial risk for diabetes. They were older, included more ex-smokers and had a higher rate of family history of diabetes. This makes the results all the more impressive - the Mediterranean diet may be the new star in diabetes prevention and treatment.
So, go ahead - try some fruits and veggies. Oh, and a healthy drizzling of olive oil...To read more about the study, see this from ScienceDaily. To read more about the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet, see this from the Mayo Clinic.