Mediterranean diet with extra “good fats” from nuts and olive oil can aid individuals in losing weight or from preventing weight gain, suggests a Spanish Study.
Dr. Ramon Estruch, lead study author, University of Barcelona said, “Our theory is that not all fats are the same, and that we have to differentiate between fats from vegetables and fats from animal sources.”
Vegetable fats including extra virgin olive oil and nuts contributes to weight loss, when they are combined with the healthy diet such as a Mediterranean diet. A healthy Mediterranean diet includes lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and olive oil. Lean sources of protein like chicken or fish over red meat containing saturated fats are also part of Mediterranean diet.
Several research studies have linked Mediterranean diet to weight loss and lowered risk of certain cancers and heart-ailments. However, researchers haven’t decisively come to a conclusion that Mediterranean diet itself is responsible.
Mr. Estruch and his colleagues in their current study have examined 7,447 older adults who are at higher risk of cardiovascular disease. The participants were made to follow one of the three diets- Mediterranean diet supplemented with one liter (about 34 fluid ounces) of extra virgin olive oil a week, Mediterranean diet supplemented with 30 grams (1 oz) of nuts a day and the third one being low-fat diet.
These participants- Men were aged between 55 to 80 years old and the Women were aged 60-80, and they were having either diabetes or other risks including cardiovascular diseases, elevated blood pressure or high cholesterol. They have not followed any restrictions on either calories or exercises.
Researchers found that after five years of study, these three groups of people experienced weight reduction, but the change was bigger in the two groups linked to Mediterranean diet.
People who followed a Mediterranean diet with nuts have lost 0.08 kilograms (less than half a pound) more weight than the group on the low-fat diet. On the other hand individuals who followed Mediterranean diet with added olive oil lost around 0.43 kilograms (almost one pound) more weight compared to those who followed the low-fat diet.
However group who followed Mediterranean diet with added olive oil had smaller percentage increase in waist size than the low-fat diet group.
“Numerous trials have shown that, in people trying to lose weight, high-fat diets that focus on reducing starch, other refined grains and sugars are as effective or more effective than healthy low-fat diets in the long term,” said Mozaffarian.
So, researchers are suggesting including healthy foods such as nuts and extra virgin olive oil in their diet. The findings were published in The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology.