- Among people with overweight and obesity, a switch to a Mediterranean diet resulted in improved cholesterol.
- The improvement developed without changes in caloric or macronutrient intake or physical activity.
- Authors: a Mediterranean diet “may remodel the intestinal microbiome towards a state that promotes metabolic and cardiovascular health.”
Why this matters
- The Mediterranean diet has been linked to prevention of many serious diseases.
- At 4 weeks, the Mediterranean group had steeper decreases in total plasma cholesterol (P=.03) and high-density lipoprotein (P=.02) vs the usual-diet group.
- The decreases showed a dose response with higher adherence.
- In the Mediterranean group, researchers also observed shifts in gut microbiome composition and in multiple metabolic measures.
- Among Mediterranean-group participants whose microbiome gene richness increased, inflammatory biomarkers improved.
- 8-week randomized clinical DINAMIC trial (n=82).
- Sedentary adults with overweight or obesity were randomly assigned to a tailored Mediterranean diet with unchanged caloric intake or their regular diets.
- No change in physical activity was required.
- Outcome: change in plasma lipids.
- Funding: European governmental funds.
- Observed changes were small in magnitude; clinical relevance unclear.