A traditional mediterranean diet effectively reduces inflammation and improves cardiovascular health
Traditional Mediterranean diet
Low-grade inflammation
Plasma biomarkers
Cell adhesion molecule
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Razquin, C. (Cristina); Martinez-Gonzalez, M.A. (Miguel Ángel). "A traditional mediterranean diet effectively reduces inflammation and improves cardiovascular health". Nutrients. 11 (8), 2019, 1842
Chrysohoou et al. fifteen years ago, showed in an elegant analysis nested within the ATTICA study [1] that a dietary score reflecting adherence to the traditional Mediterranean diet (MedDiet) was inversely associated with plasma biomarkers of low-grade inflammation. Specifically, participants in the highest tertile of adherence to the MedDiet presented 20% lower levels of highly-sensitive C reactive protein (hs-CRP), 17% lower levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6), and 14% lower white blood cell counts. This was an observational study that could be affected by residual confounding and other potential imperfections. However, another similar study, this time nested within the Nurses Cohort in the USA [2], assessed hs-CRP, IL-6, E-selectin, soluble intercellular cell adhesion molecule 1, and soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 and found that better adherence to the MedDiet was also associated with a reduction in inflammatory biomarker concentrations, with relative reductions of 24% in hs-CRP, 16% in IL-6, and 13% in E-selectin concentrations [2]. These well conducted observational studies were subsequently confirmed by a randomized clinical trial (the pilot study of the PREDIMED (PREvención con DIeta MEDiterránea) trial) where we were able to show that an intervention with 2 MedDiets maintained during 3 months was able to reduce hs-CRP, IL-6 (in both cases) and adhesion molecules compared to a low-fat diet [3]. However, hs-CRP was reduced only when the MedDiet was supplemented with polyphenol-rich extra-virgin olive oil, but not with nuts.

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