`Mediterranean Diet in Midlife Results in Better Quality of Life in Old Age - Olive Oil Times

Mediterranean Diet in Midlife Results in Better Quality of Life in Old Age

By Elena Paravantes
Nov. 11, 2013 07:00 UTC

A new study pub­lished in the Annals of Internal Medicine shows that women who fol­lowed a Mediterranean style diet in midlife, were more likely at old age to be with­out any major lim­i­ta­tions in phys­i­cal and men­tal health.

Investigators from Brigham and Women’s Hospital of the Harvard Medical School, the Harvard School of Public Health and the French National Institute of Health fol­lowed 10,670 women who were part of the Nurses’ Health Study, a long-term epi­demi­o­log­i­cal study that started in 1976 and has fol­lowed over 230,000 reg­is­tered nurses to assess risk fac­tors for can­cer, car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease and other chronic con­di­tions.

The researchers gath­ered dietary data from these women when they were in their late 50’s and 60’s and then again 15 years later, the par­tic­i­pants pro­vided infor­ma­tion about their health. Their diet qual­ity was assessed using two ques­tion­naires: the Alternative Healthy Eating Index and the Alternate Mediterranean Diet score.

The results of their analy­sis showed that women who had a high adher­ence to a Mediterranean style diet as mea­sured by the Alternate Mediterranean score had a 46% greater chances of healthy aging which was defined as 70 years or older with no major chronic dis­eases and no major impair­ment in cog­ni­tive and men­tal health.

Women who had greater adher­ence to a Healthy Diet” as mea­sured by the Alternative Healthy Eating Index only had 34 per­cent great chance of healthy aging. In other words, the Mediterranean style diet was more effec­tive.


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