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Mediterranean diet helps heart patients

While previous studies had reported that a Mediterranean diet can stave off heart disease, a new research points out the benefits of such a diet in heart patients.

A Mediterranean diet rich in fruits and vegetables, nuts, vegetable oils, low-fat dairy products, legumes, whole grains and fish can protect individuals against cardiovascular diseases and certain cancers.

According to the study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, following such a diet is effective in patients already suffering from heart disease as it lowers the risk of a second heart-related event by 31 percent.

Patients adopting a Mediterranean diet are also less likely to experience reductions in the ability of the heart's main pumping chamber and harmful structural changes commonly reported in the heart following a heart event.

The high content of vegetables and nuts in the Mediterranean diet is believed to play the main role in reducing the risk of repeated heart problems in these patients.

Scientists therefore urged heart patients to adopt a "diet that contains the favorable characteristics of the Mediterranean diet" in order to reduce cardiovascular-related mortality and illness.

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