Eating healthy is important. It helps us stay in shape even when we don’t have much time to hit the gym, it protects us from developing condition such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and even memory loss. And on top of everything, it keeps us in a good mood and energized throughout the day.
On the list of many benefits a healthy diet brings us, a recent study conducted by Swedish researchers has found that regularly eating fish and vegetables helps older adults live longer by reducing the risk of death by at least 20 percent (20%) for both men and women.
While fats generally have a bad reputation when it comes to one’s health and the effects they has on it, experts stress that not all fats are bad. For instance fat from fish species such as salmon, herring and trout is believed to be good fat that helps fight off various illnesses, especially when complemented with nutrients from fruits and vegetables such as olives, avocados, wall nuts, peanuts, almonds, cashews, leafy greens, algae and krill.
Not only that but the researchers stress that certain oils are healthy too – olive oil, corn oil, safflower oil, canola oil, soybean oils, and even sunflower oil. These are all good for your cholesterol levels.
In their study, published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation, the team from Sweden mention that “those with the highest blood levels of polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs), which come from fish and plants, were significantly less likely to die from heart disease or any cause over about 15 years than those with the lowest levels”.
To prove these findings, the experts from Uppsala University (Sweden) looked at data collected from 4.232 subjects, which they split up in a fairly well balanced 2.193 women and 2.039 men in order to help get accurate results. Subjects had to have the minimum age of 60.
The project lasted for no less than 15 years, time in which Dr. Ulf Riserus, lead author and nutrition researcher over at Uppsala University, and his team constantly checked the polyunsaturated and monounsaturated levels in the blood of subjects. Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated are considered to be two of the main healthy fats.
By the end of the project, initial results showed that only 11 percent (11%) of the subjects had died during the study, and that 11 percent (11%) more had had non fatal heart attacks.
Further examination of the data revealed that men who had a habit of consuming high quantities of fish and vegetables managed to reduce their risk of death by 27 percent (27%), while women who had a habit of consuming high quantities of fish and vegetables managed to reduce their risk of death by 20 percent (20%).
Dr. Riserus gave a statement saying that the results of his study support the current dietary guidelines, which claim that an adult should typically consume somewhere between 20 and 35 percent (20% and 35%) of calories per day from fats. If at all possible, most of said calories should be taken from good, healthy fats. People should generally avoid taking more than 10 percent (10%) from saturated fats, and trans fats should be avoided as much as possible.
The team form Uppsala University says that further research is needed due to recording a low number of deaths during the study, There were also some important differences between the risk percentage for men and the risk percentage for women that they’d like to further explore in the future.
Image Source: theweeklyobserver.com
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