We know the benefits of the Mediterranean diet to prevent cardiovascular risks. According to a new study, this type of diet would also be beneficial for our gut.
Nothing better than the Mediterranean diet as a type of diet, to improve the bacteria of our gut. This is in any case what suggests a new study conducted by scientists at the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in the United States. The latter is published in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition.
What is the Mediterranean diet?
The benefits of the Mediterranean diet (known as Cretan) have been known since the 1950s. Ancel Keys, an epidemiologist and biochemist, compared the eating habits of seven different countries. And the best were the Cretans, who had a longer life expectancy.
The Mediterranean diet consists mainly of vegetables, oils rich in polyunsaturated or mono-unsaturated fatty acids (olive oil, avocado, nuts, rapeseed or sunflower), seafood, white meat and fiber.
In addition to extending life expectancy, the Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of cardiovascular events (myocardial infarction, stroke). It would also be beneficial in cirrhosis of the liver.
The beneficial bacteria of the intestine increase
Researchers at the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center have discovered another of its benefits. It would improve our microbiota, that is to say the nature of the bacteria that populate our gut. To conduct this study, scientists followed primates for 30 months, comparing the Cretan diet to the Western diet (but with the same calorie count). The western diet consisted of fats and sugars.
As a result, after 30 months, primates fed a Mediterranean diet had more good bacteria in their gut. "We have about 2 billion good and bad bacteria living in our gut and if the bacteria are of a certain type and unbalanced, our health can suffer," says Hariom Yadav, lead author of the study.