Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Eat a Mediterranean Diet...For Your Heart...For Your Brain....For Your Health!

The common theme nowadays is to find ways to decrease the cost of medical services.  Part of this is done by prevention techniques that are often not covered by insurance companies.  The general population is quickly finding out that they need to take care of themselves whether it is by diet or exercise in order to save on their health care dollars.  It has been long believed that by partaking in a Mediteranian Diet one can keep a heart healthy and avoid extensive heart disease; the largest killer in America.1

The Mediterranean Diet consists of eating large quantities of fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, nuts, olive oil, and fish.  Low to zero quantities of dairy, saturated fats and red meat are eaten.  Wine is moderately drunk in a Mediterranean diet.

Recent research shows that the Mediterranean diet not only helps with heart disease but can also decrease the chances of suffering from brain infarcts, which can be thought of as mini-strokes that cause mild cognitive changes such as memory loss, like we might see in beginning stages of dementia. 

“Researchers found that people who most closely followed a Mediterranean-like diet were 36 percent less likely to have areas of brain damage, compared with those whose eating habits were furthest from the diet.” 2

This news is important for those in America, as it is believed that 1-4% of all Americans over the age of 65 have some sort of dementia, a number as large as 4.5 million people, according to the Mayo Clinic.

This new information, although not completely correlated, can help prevent dementia-related illnesses.  As we all know, “knowledge is power.”  Now is the time to become healthier.  It makes financial sense to take care of yourself; Save money, live healthy!

      1. American Heart Association; 2010.

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