A diet rich in fresh vegetables, olive oil and nuts, the Mediterranean diet has long been touted as a diet that can extend your life and increase your well being. We have blogged about it a few times ourselves (Keep it up…, Go nuts for Mediterranean.., Aktins for the old..). But does it help decrease your chances of developing breast cancer?
That was a question a group of Spanish researchers wanted to look at. So they followed the health of over 4000 women between the ages of 60-80 who had been given one of three diets: 1) Mediterranean supplemented with nuts, (2) Mediterranean supplemented with extra virgin olive oil or (3) a low fat diet.
They found that only those who had the diet supplemented with extra virgin olive oil had a lesser chance of developing breast cancer compared to the control low fat diet group. The diet supplemented with nuts also seemed to help but the difference was not significant.
So there you have it, olive oil performed better than nuts and both seemed to perform better than a low fat diet. It’s a shame they didn’t have a group eating a high protein diet as I recall a paper from last March that claimed eating large amounts of protein in older age helped to reduce incidence of cancer (Aktins for the old..).