A modified green Mediterranean diet was found to be twice as healthy

The Mediterranean diet has been recommended by clinical dietitians around the world as the healthiest diet of all. But now, a modified Mediterranean diet called the “Green Mediterranean/high-polyphenols diet” has been found to be twice as good – dramatically promoting the proximal de-stiffening of the aorta. The body’s largest artery carries oxygenated blood throughout the body.

Polyphenols are natural compounds found mainly in fruits such as grapes, apples, pears, cherries and berries as well as vegetables, cereals and beverages such as coffee and green tea. Many fruits that contain up to 200 to 300 milligrams of polyphenols per 100 grams of fresh weight.

Protection against oxidative stress

Polyphenols are reducing agents, and together with other dietary reducing agents including vitamin C, vitamin E and carotenoids (also known as antioxidants), they protect the body’s tissues against oxidative stress and related pathologies such as cancers, disease coronary heart and inflammation.

But don’t overdo it, as animal studies show that high-dose polyphenol supplements can cause imbalances in thyroid levels, kidney damage and tumors, and in humans, they can increase the risk of stroke and premature death. raise.

The DIRECT PLUS trial research team was the first to introduce the concept of the green-Mediterranean, high-polyphenols diet. This modified Mediterranean diet differs from the traditional Mediterranean diet due to its more abundant dietary polyphenols and lower amounts of red or processed meat. In addition to a daily intake of walnuts (28 grams), the green-Mediterranean dieters consumed three to four cups of green tea and one cup of Wolffia-globosa (mankai) green plant shake of duck per day over a year and a half. The aquatic green plant mankai is high in bioavailable iron, B12, 200 types of polyphenols and protein so it is a good substitute for meat.

Professor Iris Shai. (credit: DANI MACHLIS/BGU)

A Mediterranean green diet high in polyphenols significantly regresses proximal aortic stiffness (PAS), a sign of vascular aging and increased cardiovascular risk. A green Mediterranean diet was compared with a healthy Mediterranean diet and a healthy control diet recommended in the guideline in DIRECT PLUS, a large-scale clinical intervention trial.

Researchers found that proximal aortic stiffness was reduced by 15% on the green Mediterranean diet, 7.3% on the Mediterranean diet, and 4.8% on the guideline-guided healthy diet. The study was recently published in the top-ranked journal in the field of cardiology, the Journal of the American College of Cardiology under the title “Effect of Lifestyle Modifications and Mediterranean Green Diet on R1 Gallbladder Aortic Strength.”

This is the first time scientists have presented a powerful, powerful effect of diet on near age-related aortic stiffness. DIRECT PLUS was a large-scale, long-term clinical trial over 18 months among 300 participants, using MRIs to measure aortic stiffness, which is the most accurate non-invasive measure of the elasticity of the blood vessel wall. It occurs when the elastic fibers within the arterial wall (elastin) begin to break down due to mechanical stress.

PAS reflects aortic stiffness from the ascending to the proximal descending thoracic aorta; the part of the aorta. Proximal aortic stiffness is a characteristic marker of vascular aging and an independent cardiovascular risk factor for predicting morbidity and mortality.

Change the lifestyle to be healthier

Changing one’s lifestyle to a healthier lifestyle is the first and most widely adopted intervention to treat obesity and its metabolic complications. But although intense exercise reduces PAS, the effect of weight loss interventions on PAS remains uncertain. The Mediterranean diet is the most fundamental dietary intervention for reducing cardiometabolic risk and preventing cardiovascular disease, the team wrote.

The ‘Green Mediterranean/high polyphenol diet’ is better than the Mediterranean diet for protecting the heart and other vital organs. “However, the effects of the Mediterranean diet on PAS are unclear. Recently, we reported that a hypocaloric-green Mediterranean diet enriched with plant-based polyphenols and less meat and simple carbohydrates may offer benefits beyond hypocaloric-Mediterranean and healthy diet guidelines to improve cardiometabolic risk.

The research was led by Professor Iris Shai of the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beersheba, Israel who is an assistant professor at the Harvard School of Public Health and an honorary professor at the University of Leipzig, Germany – along with her doctorate. student Dr. Gal Tsaban, Cardiologist from Soroka-University Medical Center, and colleagues from Harvard and Leipzig Universities.

The team has shown in previous studies that the green Mediterranean diet, high in polyphenols, has various beneficial effects, from remodeling the microbiome to stopping brain atrophy and regression of intrahepatic hepatosteatosis (fat at least five percent of weight the liver) and visceral adiposity (fat stored deep within the abdomen and wrapped around organs including the liver and intestine).

“A healthy lifestyle is a strong foundation for improving cardio-metabolic health,” explained Shai. “We learned from the results of our experiments that the quality of the diet is critical to the mobilization of atherogenic progenitor tissue (including chronic inflammation and repair of the vessel wall endothelium and smooth muscle cells resulting in thickened vessel walls with narrowed opening) , lowering. cardiometabolic risk and improve one’s fat profile. Dietary polyphenols – consumed while red meat is substituted for equivalent plant protein – can significantly improve various aspects of human health.”

“However, to date, no dietary strategy has been shown to influence the physiology of vascular aging,” Shai said. “This study is, to our knowledge, the first to show that PAS can be regressed by maintaining a healthy lifestyle; beyond weight loss, the Green diet may have a greater impact -Mediterranean on PAS regression, predicts a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, compared to other Mediterranean diets Eating a healthy diet alone is associated with PAS regression, but the green-Mediterranean diet provides a significant 15% reduction in PAS, which is obtained by making simple and achievable changes to your diet and lifestyle.”

“The results of our study show again that not all diets offer similar benefits and that the green-Mediterranean diet may promote vascular health,” said Tsaban.

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