Mediterranean diet ‘can almost halve risk of becoming obese’

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A Mediterranean diet can almost halve your risk of becoming obese, a landmark study has found.The diet rich in vegetables, nuts, grains and olive oil slashes the likelihood of you getting too fat by 43%.
Even without doing any more exercise, people can dramatically cut their risk of getting chubby simply by adopting the Mediterranean diet, the research found. One in four adults in the UK is obese.Now research presented at the world’s biggest obesity conference found that adopting the diet can provide “substantial protection” against the threat of obesity.A typical Mediterranean diet includes high intakes of plant-based proteins such as nuts, lentils and beans, whole grains, and healthy monounsaturated fats such as olive oil. Researcher Julen Sanz, who led the research involving 16,000 people over more than a decade, said: “Our study suggests that plant-based diets are associated with substantially lower risk of developing obesity.“This supports current recommendations to shift to diets rich in plant foods, with lower intake of animal foods.”
Experts have long known that a Mediterranean diet can reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease and Type 2 diabetes.But until now little was known about its role on the risk of developing obesity.Now a major new study presented at the European Congress on Obesity, in Porto, Portugal, has found that eating a diet rich in fruit and vegetables could cut obesity risk.Consultant cardiologist Dr Aseem Malhotra, an adviser to the National Obesity Forum, said: “This study provides further strong evidence that adopting a Mediterranean style diet significantly reduces the chances of obesity.“The UK government need to urgently adopt a health policy that makes a healthy diet easily accessible and affordable for all.“Not only will this reverse the obesity epidemic but it will quickly reduce the burden of all associated lifestyle diseases that have brought our NHS to the brink of collapse.”Pro-vegetarian diets with a higher level of plant-based foods compared to animal-based foods can provide “substantial protection” against obesity,the new research found.The observational study found that people who ate a high pro-vegetarian diet – rich in food coming from plant sources like vegetables, fruit, and grains – cut their risk of developing obesity by almost half compared to those who were least pro-vegetarian – with a dietary pattern rich in animal food like meat.

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