This Diet May Help Women Live Longer

Greek salad in a blue bowl

What is the Mediterranean Diet? Why does it have a history of promoting weight loss, heart and brain health, cancer prevention, and diabetes prevention and control?

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Middle-aged women who follow a heart-healthy Mediterranean diet may live a healthier, longer life, a new study suggests. For the study, researchers evaluated the diet and medical records of more than 10,000 women.. The women were in their late 50s or early 60s between 1984 and 1986, and were free of major chronic diseases. About 15 years later, they again provided information on their diet and their health.

The Mediterranean diet is characterized by greater intake of [fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains] and fish; lower intake of red and processed meats; moderate intake of alcohol; higher amounts of [monounsaturated fats, mostly provided by olive oil from Mediterranean countries]; and lower amounts of [saturated fats]. Saturated fats are found in baked goods, fatty meats and other foods.