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4 diets recommended by science: what are their differences and benefits

Elena KozlovaLS Food
Diets associated with the prevention of cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases
Diets are associated with the prevention of cardiovascular and gastrointestinal diseases

There is a wide variety of diets, but not all of them are beneficial to health. The Mediterranean, Atlantic, FODMAP, and DASH diets are the types recommended by science.

However, it's important to understand that a good diet is not just one that helps you lose weight. If we talk about general well-being, you need to know that it should be complete in terms of nutrition, according to mejorconsalud.com.

The Mediterranean diet

It has the largest amount of scientific evidence of its benefits, as it plays an important preventive role and is a means of treating various pathologies. Its main characteristics include:

  • Prioritized consumption of plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains and nuts;
  • Daily consumption of dairy products, especially yogurt and cheese;
  • Use of olive oil as the main fat;
  • Abundant consumption of water and natural beverages;
  • Moderate consumption of unprocessed red meat, fish, and eggs;
  • Restriction or exclusion of all industrial products.

This diet significantly improves health. In particular, it is effective against problems associated with chronic inflammation, namely: metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular, and neurodegenerative diseases.

The DASH diet

It is based on a dietary approach to stopping hypertension. It consists of the recommendations specified by the American Heart Association (AHA), which are aimed at lowering blood pressure and preventing cardiovascular disease.

In general, the diet includes the following:

  • A large amount of fruits, vegetables, legumes, and skim milk;
  • Low consumption of sodium and red meat;
  • Minimal or no processed foods (with sugar, salt, and refined flour) in the diet.

Some studies have suggested that this diet also has other beneficial effects, such as bone metabolism and urinary homeostasis.

Atlantic diet

This diet is typical for countries surrounded by the Atlantic coast. Like its Mediterranean "sister", it helps prevent cardiovascular disease, but is based on the following principles:

  • Fish and shellfish are the main components of the diet;
  • Large quantities of vegetables are required;
  • Cereals, legumes, and potatoes are sources of carbohydrates;
  • Moderate consumption of red meat;
  • Use of olive oil as the main cooking fat.

FODMAP diet

This diet is based on the elimination of fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols from the diet. It is often used as an adjunct to the treatment of gastrointestinal pathologies, such as inflammatory bowel syndrome.

Foods to avoid, at least until you feel better:

  • Legumes (chickpeas, lentils, and soybeans);
  • Cereals (wheat, rye, barley, amaranth and its derivatives);
  • All dairy products;
  • Some sweeteners, honey, and high fructose corn syrup;
  • Soy drinks, juices, rum, and white wine;
  • Garlic and onions;
  • Canned fruits, plums, pears, watermelons, and others.

Among the things that can be consumed, the following stands out:

  • Corn starch, oats, rice, corn, millet, sorghum and quinoa;
  • Sugar and sweeteners that do not end in "ol";
  • Tofu;
  • Tomato, carrot, zucchini, chard;
  • Melon, orange, grapefruit, and other fruits;
  • Lactose-free milk or goat cheese;
  • Olive oil.

While all of the above diets provide the benefits guaranteed by science, it is important to remember that the diet should always be balanced in terms of nutrients. This will help to avoid problems associated with their lack or excessive amounts.

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