Sev­eral of my friends are be­com­ing veg­e­tar­ian, but I pre­fer the Mediter­ranean diet. Which is best for heart health?

Good Health Choices - - Ask the expert -

Both a veg­e­tar­ian diet and the Mediter­ranean diet have been shown to be help­ful in los­ing weight. A veg­e­tar­ian diet seems to be bet­ter at re­duc­ing ‘bad’ choles­terol, while the Mediter­ranean diet is bet­ter at re­duc­ing triglyc­erides, a ‘bad’ fat. How­ever, re­al­world data shows that not all veg­e­tar­ian di­ets are equal. For ex­am­ple, In­dia, where a high pro­por­tion of the pop­u­la­tion is veg­e­tar­ian, has much higher rates of heart dis­ease than Aus­tralia and New Zealand. The strong­est ev­i­dence of di­etary im­pact on heart at­tacks, strokes and death has been found with Mediter­ranean di­ets that in­clude fish and small amounts of lean meat.

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