Saturday, September 19, 2009

Mediterranean diet improves diabetes management

While the Mediterranean diet had long been linked to greater weight loss, a new study finds this diet more efficient in controlling blood sugar.

According to the study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, a low-carbohydrate, Mediterranean-style diet is more effective in diabetes management compared to typical low-fat, calorie-restricted diets.

Following a Mediterranean diet with at least 30% of daily calories from fat (mostly olive oil) delays the need for taking diabetes medication and improves certain heart disease risk factors.

The Mediterranean diet -- rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and low in red meat and processed foods -- also resulted in trimmer waistlines and increased the "good" HDL-cholesterol levels, all of which are considered to be heart-healthy changes in the body.

Scientists concluded that reducing the need for diabetes treatment should also be added to the Mediterranean diet's long list of health benefits including greater longevity.