Updated: Feb 11
According to clinical study results published in the Heart Journal, the “green” Mediterranean diet may be even healthier than the traditional Mediterranean diet. The results were reported in Healthline.
This is based on a clinical trial of 294 people with moderate obesity (BMI 31) lasting 6 months. The participants were majority male, of average age 51. As Healthline reports, the participants were divided into three groups:
The first group received guidance on boosting physical activity and basic guidelines for achieving a healthy diet.
The second group received the same physical activity guidance plus advice on following a calorie-restricted, traditional Mediterranean diet. Their menu was low in simple carbohydrates, rich in vegetables, and with poultry and fish replacing red meat.
The third group received all of the above, plus 3 to 4 cups of green tea as well as 28 grams of walnuts per day.Their daily menu also included 100 grams of frozen Wolffia globosa (cultivated Mankai strain) cubes, a high protein form of the aquatic plant duckweed. The cubes were taken as a green plant-based protein shake as a partial substitute for animal protein.
According the results published in the Heart Journal:
The Green Mediterranean group lost an average of 6.2 kgs over 6 months. This compares with the traditional Mediterranean diet group, which lost an average of 5.4 kgs, and the healthy diet group which lost 1.5 kgs.
The Green Mediterranean group had an average reduction in waist circumference of 8.6 cm. The traditional Mediterranean group lost 6.8 cm, while the healthy diet group lost 4.3 cm.
The Green Mediterranean group achieved a greater average decrease in LDL cholesterol of -6.1 mg/DL (3.7% on average). The Mediterranean group achieved -2.3 mg/DL, while the healthy diet group achieved -0.2 mg.dL.
The Green Mediterranean group achieved a lower average diastolic blood pressure (-7.2mm Hg), versus -5.2mm Hg for the Mediterranean group and and the healthy diet group -3.4mm HG.
The Green Mediterranean group achieved a greater decline in insulin resistance at -0.77, versus -0.46 for the Mediterranean group and -0.27 for the healthy diet group.
Finally, the Green Mediterranean group achieved a greater decline on the 10-year Framingham Risk Score, by an average of -3.7% versus -2.3% for the Mediterranean group and -1.4% for the healthy diet group.
The Heart Journal study concludes that:
The green MED diet, supplemented with walnuts, green tea and Mankai and lower in meat/poultry, may amplify the beneficial cardiometabolic effects of Mediterranean diet.
There has been significant study into the effects of the Mediterranean Diet over the past 10-15 years. The present study contributes to these by showing that adding green tea, walnuts and plant protein to the Mediterranean Diet appears to improve its results.
Green tea is rich in polyphenols and an important source of antioxidants. It has been shown to stimulate brain activity and increase fat burning. Walnuts are also a good source of antioxidants, plus omega 3 and may control appetite.
Maintaining a Mediterranean or a Green Mediterranean diet is, of course, among the most difficult aspects of a healthy lifestyle. Even for us who live on the Mediterranean, maintain the sense of stress-free living and the time to care for our diet and physical shape can be difficult.
That’s why we recommend two food supplements as possible support for improving your cholesterol and high blood pressure:
This is a balanced combination of olive leaf extract, Vitamin C and Vitamin D that provides a natural way of controlling and reducing high blood cholesterol. The extracts of Olive leaves (Oleo europaea) reduce cardiovascular risk, lower blood pressure and eliminate free radicals. read more
If you are more concerned about high blood pressure and hypertension, we recommend TENSO LEVEL. This is produced from EFLA 943, a patented molecule in which olive leaves are ground into a fine powder. This maximises the concentration of oleuropein as well as other polyphenols that have been found to reduce blood pressure. Extract of olive leaf that has been shown to reduce hypertension in a series of clinical trials. read more
As always, remember that food supplements are no substitute for medical attention. If you have difficulties with cholesterol or hypertension, please visit a doctor or specialist and do a full monitoring of your blood pressure. It’s a good idea to do a full blood analysis as well as heart analysis, including stress test, echo / ECG tests and more .
The earlier you can diagnose a problem, the more chances you have to curing yourself through a mix of doctor-prescribed medication, lifestyle changes and food supplements.
Please remember: we live in very stressful times, and COVID is not helping matters. Take care of yourself. Make your health and well-being a priority. There are no second takes in life: make the most of what you have now.
Tsaban G, Yaskolka Meir A, Rinott E, et al. The effect of green Mediterranean diet on cardiometabolic risk; a randomised controlled trial. Heart. Published Online First: 23 November 2020. doi: 10.1136/heartjnl-2020-317802
Pratt, E. More Good News About Mediterranean, Plant-Based Diets and Your Gut Health. Healthline. Published online on 19 February 2020. Available at: https://www.healthline.com/health-news/more-good-news-about-mediterranean-plant-based-diets-and-gut-health