Mediterranean diet boosts kidney health in people with diabetes

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The Mediterranean diet, long celebrated for its numerous health benefits, is in the spotlight once again.

This time, research underscores its role in slowing down kidney deterioration, especially noteworthy for those with type 2 diabetes.

In Spain, where nearly 15% of the population is affected by this condition, the findings are particularly relevant.

A collaborative effort between the University of Cordoba and the Maimonides Institute for Biomedical Research has shed light on why the Mediterranean diet benefits kidney function.

The study focused on the impact of dietary choices on advanced glycation end products (AGEs), compounds known for their inflammatory and oxidizing properties. These AGEs are naturally produced in the body and can also be ingested through food.

They’re typically expelled via urine, but diabetics with kidney issues often struggle to eliminate them effectively, leading to higher levels in their system.

Over five years, the research compared the Mediterranean diet with a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet among over 500 diabetic participants.

Those following the Mediterranean diet had lower levels of AGEs, suggesting this diet enhances the body’s detoxification process, helping to rid itself of harmful substances more efficiently.

This discovery is pivotal as it demonstrates how a specific dietary pattern can actively mitigate kidney function decline in diabetic patients.

It’s the first time such a direct link has been established, marking a significant advance in dietary research related to diabetes and kidney health.

The Mediterranean diet’s benefits extend beyond kidney health. The antioxidant properties of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) and the diet’s cooking methods, which favor longer, gentler cooking times, contribute to its overall health advantages.

High-temperature cooking, common in other diets, tends to produce more AGEs, whereas the Mediterranean diet’s approach is both healthier and more kidney-friendly.

Published in the journal Diabetes & Metabolism, this research is part of the larger Cordioprev study, which has been comparing the effects of a healthy low-fat diet and a Mediterranean diet enriched with virgin olive oil on patients with heart disease over seven years.

This study not only highlights the Mediterranean diet as a powerful tool for managing health issues in diabetic patients but also reinforces the importance of dietary choices in the prevention and management of chronic diseases.

It’s a beacon of hope for those seeking to improve their health through diet, offering a delicious and accessible way to protect against kidney deterioration and other complications associated with diabetes.

If you care about nutrition, please read studies about the best time to take vitamins to prevent heart disease, and vitamin D supplements strongly reduce cancer death.

For more information about nutrition, please see recent studies about plant nutrient that could help reduce high blood pressure, and these antioxidants could help reduce dementia risk.

The research findings can be found in Diabetes & Metabolism.

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