Is the Atlantic Diet an Easy Mediterranean Diet?

A six-month study published in JAMA Network Open suggests that the trendy Atlantic diet — based on the eating habits of people in northwestern Spain and northern Portugal — offers similar health benefits as its close and more well-known relative, the Mediterranean diet. Although both dietary lifestyles place an emphasis on whole grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, and olive oil, the Atlantic diet incorporates some dairy — particularly milk and cheese — as well as lean red meat, pork, bread, potatoes, and moderate wine consumption.

“These types of dietary patterns (Atlantic and Mediterranean diets) have the potential to reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, stroke, and even cognitive decline such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, and improve [gastrointestinal] function and the gut microbiome,” says Tracy Crane, PhD, RDN, co-leader of the Cancer Control Research Program of the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, to Healthline.

Spanish families who followed a traditional Galicia Atlantic Diet (GALIAT) diet and took part in educational sessions and cooking classes were found to have a lower risk of developing metabolic syndrome than those who didn’t follow the Atlantic diet. According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, metabolic syndrome is when someone has three or more of the following conditions: high blood pressure, high triglycerides, high blood sugar, a large waistline, and low HDL cholesterol. Metabolic syndrome affects one in three American adults.

Excerpted from the Daily Press

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