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Monaldi Arch Chest Dis. 2012 Jun;78(2):60-5.

[Which diet for an effective cardiovascular prevention?].

[Article in Italian]

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Department of Medical and Surgical Critical Care, University of Florence, Italy.


Over the last years, numerous evidence on the existing relationship between nutrition and chronic degenerative diseases have led investigators to search for the optimal dietary pattern to maintain a good health status. It's well known, in fact, that nutrition is capable of substantially modifying the risk profile ofa subject in primary and/or secondary prevention. Several models of diet have been imposed on public attention, but the one that got the most interest is certainly the Mediterranean diet. Recently, several studies have shown that a strict adherence to a Mediterranean dietary pattern is associated with a lower incidence of mortality and incidence of chronic degenerative diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer. Meta-analyses conducted by our group have revealed, in a population of over than 2 million of people, that adherence to Mediterranean diet determines a significant reduction on the risk of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular accidents. To the best of the knowledge the most effective indications for an optimal therapeutic strategy in nutrition include: increase the consumption of fruits and vegetables up to the recommended 5 servings a day, prefer whole grains, replace saturated and trans fats with unsaturated fats, reduce the consumption of sugar and sweetened beverages, and limit salt intake. With these simple indications, together with recommendations of following the principles of the traditional Mediterranean diet, a substantial reduction of the risk of incidence and/or mortality from cardiovascular disease can be easily obtained.

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