These healthy diets were associated with a lower risk of death, according to a study of 119,000 people over four decades.

Eat healthy, live longer.

This is a takeaway from a PhD study Published this month in JAMA Internal Medicine. Scientists led by a team from the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health found that people who closely adhered to at least one of four healthy dietary patterns were less likely to die from cardiovascular disease, cancer or respiratory disease than people who did not. closely with these diets. They were also less likely to die from any cause.

“These findings support the Dietary Guidelines for Americans’ recommendations that multiple healthy eating patterns can be tailored to individual dietary traditions and preferences,” the researchers concluded, adding that the findings were consistent across different racial and ethnic groups. The eating habits and death rates of more than 75,000 women from 1984 to 2020 over 44,000 men from 1986 to 2020 were included in the study.

The four diets studied were the Healthy Eating Index, the Alternative Mediterranean Diet, the Healthy Plant-Based Diet Index, and the Alternative Healthy Eating Index. All four share some ingredients, including whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and legumes. But there are also differences: for example, the alternative Mediterranean diet encourages fish consumption, and the healthy plant-based diet index discourages meat.

The alternative Mediterranean diet has been adapted from the original Mediterranean diet, which includes olive oil (rich in omega-3 fatty acids), fruits, nuts, grains, vegetables, legumes, and fish. Moderate consumption of alcohol and dairy products with low consumption of sweets and only occasional serving of red meat is allowed. The alternative version, meanwhile, cuts out dairy entirely, includes only whole grains and uses the same alcohol intake guidelines for men and women, JAMA says.

The world’s “best diets” overlap with the study’s findings

The Mediterranean diet consistently ranks first in US News and World Report’s list The best diet the order in which it is viewed Seven criteria: Short-term weight loss, long-term weight loss, effectiveness in preventing cardiovascular disease, effectiveness in preventing diabetes, ease of compliance, nutritional completeness and health risks. The 2023 list ranks the top three diets as the Mediterranean diet, the DASH diet, and the Flexitarian diet.

The DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet recommends fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, poultry, fish and low-fat dairy products and limits salt, red meat, sweets and sugar-sweetened beverages. The flexitarian diet is similar to other diets in that it is primarily vegetarian, but allows meat or fish to be offered occasionally. All three diets are associated with improved metabolic health, lower blood pressure and a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.

It’s critical to examine the associations between the US government, said Frank Hu, a professor of nutrition and epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health and co-author of the latest study. Dietary Guidelines for Americans and health in the long term. “Our findings will be valuable to the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee 2025-2030, which is being formed to assess the current evidence surrounding various eating patterns and health outcomes,” he said.

Reducing your salt intake is a good place to start. In 2021, the Food and Drug Administration issued new guidelines for restaurants and food manufacturers to voluntarily reduce the amount of sodium in their food over a two-and-a-half year period to help consumers stay below 3,000 milligrams. per day – still above the recommended daily allowance. Americans consume about 3,400 milligrams of sodium per day, on average, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that people consume less than 2,300 milligrams per day.

Related: Eating 400 calories a day from these foods can increase your risk of dementia by more than 20%.

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