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Diet and lifestyle

A mediterranean lifestyle reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease in the "Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra" (SUN) cohort.

Lifestyle habits of adults during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in Cyprus: evidence from a cross-sectional study.

Looking for Commensality: On Culture, Health, Heritage, and the Mediterranean Diet.

Family Meals, Conviviality, and the Mediterranean Diet among Families with Adolescents.

Physical Activity, Nutritional Habits, and Sleeping Behavior in Students and Employees of a Swiss University During the COVID-19 Lockdown Period: Questionnaire Survey Study.



Obesity and body composition

Diet scores and prediction of general and abdominal obesity in the Melbourne Collaborative Cohort Study.

Maternal diet in pregnancy is associated with differences in child body mass index trajectories from birth to adolescence.

Extracts and supplements

Effect of natural leaf extracts as phytomedicine in curing geriatrics.

Antioxidant and reduced skin-ageing effects of a polyphenol-enriched dietary supplement in response to air pollution: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study.

Geriatrics

Oral factors and adherence to Mediterranean diet in an older Greek population.

Consumption of caffeinated beverages and kidney function decline in an elderly Mediterranean population with metabolic syndrome.

Nuts

Total Nut, Tree Nut, and Peanut Consumption and Metabolic Status in Southern Italian Adults.

New tools validation

The Nutrition Literacy Assessment Instrument for Italian Subjects, NLit-IT: Exploring Validity and Reliability.

Preliminary study on the potential application of Fourier-transform mid-infrared for the evaluation of overall quality and authenticity of Moroccan virgin olive oil.


Summary:

In this week's newsletter we will take a look at some elements of the Mediterranean diet that are becoming increasingly important. Gradually, research on this dietary pattern is evolving and going beyond food consumption. It is no longer just a preference for olive oil over other fats, but also a matter of sustainability and enjoyment. A recent narrative review expands on the cultural aspects related to the Mediterranean diet following its definition and designation as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. This review places special emphasis on commensality, a trait that is not exclusive to this dietary pattern but acquires deeper meaning and relevance for Mediterranean cultures where meals become a time for sharing and conviviality. Thus, “Family meals” is the term used to describe commensality in a small quantitative study. According to this group of experts, commensality was a composite measure of various factors, including the frequency of meals, meals eaten at the table, absence of digital distractions, pleasant conversations at the dinner table, and the time dedicated to family meals. Families that fulfilled all these and other social aspects were considered to have higher adherence to a Mediterranean pattern. Undoubtedly, this holistic view of the Mediterranean lifestyle will have greater repercussions in future studies.

Among this week's reports, an original study demonstrates the effects of the Mediterranean lifestyle on cardiovascular health. These effects were studied with a 28-item Mediterranean lifestyle (MEDLIFE) score and information on more than 18,000 participants from a well-established Mediterranean cohort. Fifteen of these items refer to food consumption, including individual items for olive oil, nuts and olive consumption. Other aspects of this score include, 7 items for dietary habits, and 6 for physical activity, rest, social habits, and conviviality. The results of this article show a relative risk reduction of 50% for the highest MEDLIFE scores (14–23 points) compared to the lowest scores (0–9 points).

Lastly, this holistic view of the Mediterranean diet was evaluated in a cross-sectional study on the modification of lifestyle habits during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in Cyprus. Under lockdown, various lifestyle factors were adversely affected (stress score, social support score and sleep quality score), however the same cannot be said for the Mediterranean diet which increased significantly. These results were in line with a similar study conducted among students and employees at a Swiss University, which emphasized the importance of implementing group specific measures to improve lifestyle habits.



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