- A Mediterranean-style diet for 1 year improved systolic BP in men and reduced arterial stiffness in women.
- Results are from a population of healthy older people aged 65-79 years in the European NU-AGE study .
Why this matters
- This diet varies from the conventional Mediterranean diet because it includes tweaks, such as low sodium intake, to be in keeping with US cardiovascular risk-reduction guidelines.
- Systolic BP dropped significantly for men (−9.2 mmHg; P=.02) on the diet but not for women (−3.1 mmHg; P=.37).
- Arterial stiffness decreases in women on the diet but not in men (between-group difference, −16.4; 95% CI, −32.2 to −0.6; P=.04).
- Controls showed no significant changes.
- The authors say that diet-related features linked to improvements vs controls included intake of nuts, fish, whole grains, olive oil, and fruits/vegetables/legumes.
- 1-year randomized controlled trial of 1128 participants (BP measures; arterial stiffness in subset of 225), 5 European centers.
- Funding: EU Seventh Framework Program.
- Cardiovascular health was only a secondary outcome.
- Arterial stiffness measured at 1/5 centers.
- Dietary adherence varied.