Mediterranean diet can slow diabetes progression


Research has shown that a Mediterranean diet can help prevent both pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes, and now a new study suggests that eating this way - lots of olive oil, fish, whole grains, and nuts - can also help slow the progression of type 2 diabetes.

An eight-year trial published in the journal Diabetes Care found that participants who followed a Mediterranean diet could go signficantly longer without needing diabetes medication. Additionally, those who ate this way were more likely to go into remission from the disease compared with people in the study who were eating a low-fat diet.

"Everybody thinks of fat as being bad, but this shows that it depends on what kind of fat," Dr. Leanne Olansky, an endocrinologist at the Cleveland Clinic, told Reuter's Health.

Fiber, fat, and meat type count

At the end of the study period, all of the people who had been eating a low-fat diet had needed to go on diabetes medication, but the group eating Mediterranean didn't need medication until the eight-year mark.

The key, researchers said, may be that the Mediterranean diet helps to control blood sugar because it's naturally high in fiber, includes less red meat, and advocates consumption of more healthy fats than other types of diets.

"The Mediterranean diet represents an easy way to combine healthy foods with taste and flavor," said lead study author Katherine Esposito. "Most of our patients continue to follow Mediterranean diet, even after the study ended."

Source: Reuters

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