Mediterranean diet: also the best option for a healthy liver

Every day they are checked with greater intensity the medicinal benefits of following a Mediterranean diet, which is considered a harmonious and balanced lifestyle, which is associated with great benefits for physical and mental health. It has also positioned itself as one of the best nutritional allies, to lose weight and combat chronic diseases, such as obesity. It is no news to say that obesity is considered a worldwide epidemic and is related to many other health problems. One of them is fatty liver disease, a chronic condition that it affects between 30-40% of American adults. Fortunately, diet, daily habits and lifestyle are the secret key to avoiding these degenerative conditions and the Mediterranean diet is simply the most powerful ally.

Today there are many diets focused on losing weight in the fastest and most forceful way possible, however, bet on those that provide benefits for liver health It is a great success! Scientific research does not lie, not in vain has it been verified through numerous references that following a Mediterranean diet is probably the healthiest option for both promote weight loss as well as liver health.

Among the great virtues of the Mediterranean diet is that it is not a strict eating pattern, rather, it is an eating scheme that focuses on giving priority to the consumption of certain products that are related to great nutritional and therapeutic properties. So much of the success lies in basing the diet on natural and whole foods, with a special emphasis on local and seasonal ingredients. Broadly speaking, a balanced Mediterranean diet is usually made up of 7 basic food categories: fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, whole grains, fish and shellfish, and of course olive oil. Which shine for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which promote the purification of toxins and fats from the liver.

Although it is a lifestyle that promotes following a natural diet, free of processed foods and with a limited consumption of red meat. Recently, more specifically, it was discovered that following a Mediterranean diet that includes more green plant matter it can cut your risk of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in half. This is a recent study that was co-authored with researchers from Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health. It was also found that the so-called green mediterranean diet, which includes daily consumption of green tea and an aquatic plant called Mankai, which contain beneficial compounds known as polyphenols, reduces liver fat more than the other two healthy diets tested during the study.

This wonderful study was published in 2021, in the journal Gut and its main author was Iris Shai, associate professor of nutrition at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health What did the study consist of? During an 18-month clinical trial, researchers followed 294 adults with abdominal obesity. The participants were divided into three groups with different dietary regimens: standard nutritional advice, Mediterranean diet, and Mediterranean green diet. Among the most relevant findings, it is worth mentioning that the three groups lost liver fat, however those of the group of the green Mediterranean diet had the greatest reduction. They lost an average of 39% of liver fat compared to a 20% reduction with the traditional Mediterranean diet and a 12% reduction with standard nutritional advice. Complementarily, it is worth mentioning that a previous study co-authored with Iris Shai, endorsed the benefits of the green Mediterranean diet in weight loss and cardiometabolic issues.

Last but not least, we cannot fail to mention the most recent scientific studies, in which the benefits of the Mediterranean diet on intestinal health; which is related to the proper functioning of the liver. An intervention to increase adherence to the Mediterranean diet and an intensive weight loss program were shown to produce very beneficial changes in the intestinal microbiota in just one year. These findings were verified by researchers from the Center for Biomedical Research in Obesity and Nutrition Network (Ciberobn) -of the Carlos III Health Institute-, the Rovira i Virgili University (URV) and the Virgen de la Victoria Hospital (University of Malaga) and Your results were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Gut bacteria are the small living organisms in the large intestine of humans, which have been recognized as important for maintaining overall good health. Although they are specifically related to qualities to benefit the digestive process and the immune system. It is worth mentioning that the work was carried out under the framework of the PREDIMED-Plus study and was based on the follow-up of a group of participants who followed a Mediterranean diet with energy restriction, physical activity and behavioral changes, and another group of participants followed a diet Mediterranean without caloric restriction, that is, without any pattern of weight loss. The results: the first group lost more weight (4.2 kilos), while the participants who followed the Mediterranean diet without restrictions, lost 0.2 kilos. What is relevant about all this is that both weight loss and good intestinal health, They are two key aspects to reduce the risk of suffering from fatty liver. In fact, it is known that losing about 10% of body weight is a great measure to combat this condition in its initial stage.

One more benefit to add to the famous and much loved Mediterranean diet. Finally we can’t forget that food can be our best medicine and it is the key to preventing numerous health conditions. A healthy and balanced lifestyle like the one proposed by the Mediterranean diet is the best tool to live longer and better, protecting physical, mental and emotional health.

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