Mediterranean diet and health status: An updated meta-analysis and a proposal for a literature-based adherence score

Francesco Sofi, Claudio Macchi, Rosanna Abbate, Gian Franco Gensini, Alessandro Casini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objective To update previous meta-analyses of cohort studies that investigated the association between the Mediterranean diet and health status and to utilize data coming from all of the cohort studies for proposing a literature-based adherence score to the Mediterranean diet. Design We conducted a comprehensive literature search through all electronic databases up to June 2013. Setting Cohort prospective studies investigating adherence to the Mediterranean diet and health outcomes. Cut-off values of food groups used to compute the adherence score were obtained. Subjects The updated search was performed in an overall population of 4 172 412 subjects, with eighteen recent studies that were not present in the previous meta-analyses. Results A 2-point increase in adherence score to the Mediterranean diet was reported to determine an 8 % reduction of overall mortality (relative risk = 0·92; 95 % CI 0·91, 0·93), a 10 % reduced risk of CVD (relative risk = 0·90; 95 % CI 0·87, 0·92) and a 4 % reduction of neoplastic disease (relative risk = 0·96; 95 % CI 0·95, 0·97). We utilized data coming from all cohort studies available in the literature for proposing a literature-based adherence score. Such a score ranges from 0 (minimal adherence) to 18 (maximal adherence) points and includes three different categories of consumption for each food group composing the Mediterranean diet. Conclusions The Mediterranean diet was found to be a healthy dietary pattern in terms of morbidity and mortality. By using data from the cohort studies we proposed a literature-based adherence score that can represent an easy tool for the estimation of adherence to the Mediterranean diet also at the individual level.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2769-2782
Number of pages14
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Volume17
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 6 2013

Keywords

  • Mediterranean diet
  • Meta-analysis
  • Score
  • Update

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Medicine(all)

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