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      Mediterranean Dietary Patterns and Cardiovascular Health.

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          Abstract

          The Mediterranean dietary pattern has been linked with reduced cardiovascular disease incidence and mortality. Components of the Mediterranean diet associated with better cardiovascular health include low consumption of meat and meat products, moderate consumption of ethanol (mostly from wine), and high consumption of vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, fish, and olive oil. Increasing evidence indicates that the synergy among these components results in beneficial changes in intermediate pathways of cardiometabolic risk, such as lipids, insulin sensitivity, oxidative stress, inflammation, and vasoreactivity. As a result, consumption of a Mediterranean dietary pattern favorably affects numerous cardiovascular disease risk factors, such as dyslipidemia, hypertension, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes. Moreover, strong evidence links this dietary pattern with reduced cardiovascular disease incidence, reoccurrence, and mortality. This review evaluates the current evidence behind the cardioprotective effects of a Mediterranean dietary pattern.

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          Most cited references 127

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          Effect of potentially modifiable risk factors associated with myocardial infarction in 52 countries (the INTERHEART study): case-control study.

          Although more than 80% of the global burden of cardiovascular disease occurs in low-income and middle-income countries, knowledge of the importance of risk factors is largely derived from developed countries. Therefore, the effect of such factors on risk of coronary heart disease in most regions of the world is unknown. We established a standardised case-control study of acute myocardial infarction in 52 countries, representing every inhabited continent. 15152 cases and 14820 controls were enrolled. The relation of smoking, history of hypertension or diabetes, waist/hip ratio, dietary patterns, physical activity, consumption of alcohol, blood apolipoproteins (Apo), and psychosocial factors to myocardial infarction are reported here. Odds ratios and their 99% CIs for the association of risk factors to myocardial infarction and their population attributable risks (PAR) were calculated. Smoking (odds ratio 2.87 for current vs never, PAR 35.7% for current and former vs never), raised ApoB/ApoA1 ratio (3.25 for top vs lowest quintile, PAR 49.2% for top four quintiles vs lowest quintile), history of hypertension (1.91, PAR 17.9%), diabetes (2.37, PAR 9.9%), abdominal obesity (1.12 for top vs lowest tertile and 1.62 for middle vs lowest tertile, PAR 20.1% for top two tertiles vs lowest tertile), psychosocial factors (2.67, PAR 32.5%), daily consumption of fruits and vegetables (0.70, PAR 13.7% for lack of daily consumption), regular alcohol consumption (0.91, PAR 6.7%), and regular physical activity (0.86, PAR 12.2%), were all significantly related to acute myocardial infarction (p<0.0001 for all risk factors and p=0.03 for alcohol). These associations were noted in men and women, old and young, and in all regions of the world. Collectively, these nine risk factors accounted for 90% of the PAR in men and 94% in women. Abnormal lipids, smoking, hypertension, diabetes, abdominal obesity, psychosocial factors, consumption of fruits, vegetables, and alcohol, and regular physical activity account for most of the risk of myocardial infarction worldwide in both sexes and at all ages in all regions. This finding suggests that approaches to prevention can be based on similar principles worldwide and have the potential to prevent most premature cases of myocardial infarction.
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            Primary prevention of cardiovascular disease with a Mediterranean diet.

            Observational cohort studies and a secondary prevention trial have shown an inverse association between adherence to the Mediterranean diet and cardiovascular risk. We conducted a randomized trial of this diet pattern for the primary prevention of cardiovascular events. In a multicenter trial in Spain, we randomly assigned participants who were at high cardiovascular risk, but with no cardiovascular disease at enrollment, to one of three diets: a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil, a Mediterranean diet supplemented with mixed nuts, or a control diet (advice to reduce dietary fat). Participants received quarterly individual and group educational sessions and, depending on group assignment, free provision of extra-virgin olive oil, mixed nuts, or small nonfood gifts. The primary end point was the rate of major cardiovascular events (myocardial infarction, stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes). On the basis of the results of an interim analysis, the trial was stopped after a median follow-up of 4.8 years. A total of 7447 persons were enrolled (age range, 55 to 80 years); 57% were women. The two Mediterranean-diet groups had good adherence to the intervention, according to self-reported intake and biomarker analyses. A primary end-point event occurred in 288 participants. The multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios were 0.70 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.54 to 0.92) and 0.72 (95% CI, 0.54 to 0.96) for the group assigned to a Mediterranean diet with extra-virgin olive oil (96 events) and the group assigned to a Mediterranean diet with nuts (83 events), respectively, versus the control group (109 events). No diet-related adverse effects were reported. Among persons at high cardiovascular risk, a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or nuts reduced the incidence of major cardiovascular events. (Funded by the Spanish government's Instituto de Salud Carlos III and others; Controlled-Trials.com number, ISRCTN35739639.).
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              Abdominal obesity and metabolic syndrome.

              Metabolic syndrome is associated with abdominal obesity, blood lipid disorders, inflammation, insulin resistance or full-blown diabetes, and increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. Proposed criteria for identifying patients with metabolic syndrome have contributed greatly to preventive medicine, but the value of metabolic syndrome as a scientific concept remains controversial. The presence of metabolic syndrome alone cannot predict global cardiovascular disease risk. But abdominal obesity - the most prevalent manifestation of metabolic syndrome - is a marker of 'dysfunctional adipose tissue', and is of central importance in clinical diagnosis. Better risk assessment algorithms are needed to quantify diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk on a global scale.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Annu. Rev. Nutr.
                Annual review of nutrition
                Annual Reviews
                1545-4312
                0199-9885
                2015
                : 35
                Affiliations
                [1 ] Emory Clinical Cardiovascular Research Institute.
                Article
                10.1146/annurev-nutr-011215-025104
                25974696

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