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With a sea of conflicting information online, it can be hard to decide which diet is best for your health these days, but researchers at Harvard University have ranked four top diets based on their effectiveness in reducing blood sugar. risk of premature death.
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properties of the four systems
The four regimes focused on:
1 – Eat whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes.
2 – The Healthy Eating Index includes healthy plant-based foods.
3 – Avoid red and processed meats.
4 – Avoid eating added sugar, unhealthy fats and alcohol. People who scored high on this scale were 19% less likely to die from any cause.
Researchers revealed a high score on the Alternative Healthy Eating Index – a more refined version of the index developed by Harvard University – which was shown to lead to a reduction in risk of up to 20%, a reported the Daily Mail.
While people who followed a Mediterranean diet – which includes vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, legumes and fish rather than animal meat – reduced the risk by 18%. Researchers found that following a vegetarian diet reduced the risk of death by 14%.
The latest findings are based on survey data from more than 100,000 men and women who have been followed for 36 years. Participants were asked to complete a dietary questionnaire every two to four years indicating whether they followed healthy eating habits such as the Mediterranean diet or consumed plant-based foods.
They were also scored using the American Healthy Eating Index and the Alternative Healthy Eating Index, both of which give scores based on how often a person eats healthy and unhealthy foods.
Premature deaths are reduced by 14-20%
The researchers found that each diet tested had a positive effect, reducing the risk of premature death by 14-20%.
And people who stick to different healthy eating habits also have a lower risk of dying from cancer, heart attack, stroke, or respiratory disease.
“(These dietary standards) aim to provide science-based nutritional advice that promotes good health and reduces major chronic diseases,” explained Dr. Frank Hu, study author and Harvard nutrition expert. Thus, it is essential to examine the associations between (these) recommended diets and long-term health outcomes, especially mortality.
The United States Department of Agriculture developed the Healthy Eating Index as the country’s official dietary benchmark, which scores from zero to 100 based on the number of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, produce dairy and seafood that a person receives per 1,000 calories consumed.
This system includes: eating 0.8 cups of fruit – including juices and fruit products, 0.4 cups of whole fruit, 1.1 cups of vegetables, and 0.2 cups of vegetables and beans per 1000 calories consumed, a person will get a perfect score in this category.
The USDA also recommends 1.5 ounces (ounces) of whole grains, 1.3 cents of dairy, 2.5 ounces of protein, and 0.8 ounces of protein to hit the ideal 100.
Harvard Alternative Index
Working within official guidelines established in 2015, Harvard University has developed an alternative indicator that puts more emphasis on total daily servings.
The Alternative Healthy Eating Index calls for eating five servings of vegetables a day, four servings of fruit, five to six whole grains, at least one serving of nut protein or tofu, and eating fish regularly. This diet can be measured on a scale of zero to 110.
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The Mediterranean diet, which replaces chicken and beef with fish while forgoing processed foods, sugary drinks and other unhealthy foods for whole grains, fruits and vegetables, has been popular in recent years and protects against disease. heart disease and dementia.
Harvard University developed an index to estimate how well eaters adhere to a diet, scoring the diet on a scale of zero to 100.
In the study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, Harvard researchers collected survey data from 75,000 women and 44,000 men over the age of 36.
In two major survey projects, the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Tracer Study, participants will complete questionnaires about their health every two years.
Part of these checks included questions about how often a person ate any of 130 different foods. With any disease diagnosed between each reported period. Mortality among the study population was also monitored.
Dietary habits and mortality risk
The researchers developed a diet score for each participant using data on eating habits. Controlling for external factors such as family history, smoking and alcohol consumption, they then determined the risk of all-cause mortality each year that a person experiences based on their diet.
They found that participants who scored highest on the Alternative Healthy Eating Index — a Harvard-modified version of the USDA standards — reduced their risk of all-cause mortality by 20% compared to the average person.
The USDA Healthy Eating Index was the second best, reducing the risk by 19%. While the Mediterranean diet reduced the risk of death by 18%.
“Diet remains the cornerstone of maintaining optimal health,” the study authors wrote.
According to the Global Burden of Disease Study, an unhealthy diet is considered one of the leading causes of death worldwide. “In this cohort study, greater adherence to various healthy eating patterns was consistently associated with a lower risk of death.”
However, a vegan diet is not as effective as a typical healthy diet mixed with meat and dairy. Researchers found that scoring high on a plant-based diet could reduce the risk of death by 14%.