Higher-fat diets are better at keeping disease at bay

Can eating more fat make you healthier and increase your chance of staying disease free? Probably.

A new combined analysis of all earlier studies shows that a Mediterranean diet with unlimited amounts of fat may reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, obesity, breast cancer and type 2 diabetes:

DailyMail: High-Fat Diets ARE the Best: Mediterranean Diet ‘Significantly Reduces the Risk of Breast Cancer, Diabetes and Heart Disease’

Annals of Internal Medicine: Effects on Health Outcomes of a Mediterranean Diet With No Restriction on Fat Intake

According to the analysis, a high-fat Mediterranean diet is healthier and the better at keeping disease at bay, compared to lower-fat diets.

Dr. Aseem Malhotra, cardiologist, says that “It is high time we in the UK moved towards food based guidelines and lift restrictions on dietary fat from nutritious foods.”

When do you think that the guidelines will truly reflect these facts?


A HIGHER Fat Mediterranean Diet Reduces Breast Cancer Risk by 62%

NYT: The Mediterranean Diet – Is it the Food of the Lifestyle


Is the Mediterranean diet healthy?


  1. gbl
    "Higher fat diets are better .... "

    That's not what it said Andreas.

    Reply: #2
  2. Alan
    GBL, it does though. Repeatedly, except for the expected counter argument later in the article. Either way (right or wrong), the article does say this.
  3. gbl
    No. It does not. Read the study abstract not the news article, and better yet read the full study.

    QUOTE: There was inconsistent, minimal, or no evidence pertaining to any other outcome, including adherence, hypertension, cognitive function, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and quality of life.

    **Limitations: Few trials; medium risk-of-bias ratings for many studies; low or insufficient strength of evidence for outcomes; heterogeneous diet definitions and components.**

    (Phew. Sounds like a study done in some Siberian back water lab. By grad students.)

    Conclusion: Limited evidence suggests that a Mediterranean diet with no restriction on fat intake may reduce the incidence of cardiovascular events, breast cancer, and type 2 diabetes mellitus but may not affect all-cause mortality."

    "May" "Limited" "Kidney diseae" "Suggest"

  4. Alan
    That's fair, it does say limited etc in their conclusion on the main page. However you've only cherry picked the parts on that page which coincide with your view (which is somewhat hypocritical when you're implying at least that the paper is being taken out of context perhaps).

    So to counter, I've added in an important part that you cut out.....

    QUOTE: "Data Synthesis: Two primary prevention trials found no difference in all-cause mortality between diet groups. One large primary prevention trial found that a Mediterranean diet resulted in a lower incidence of major cardiovascular events (hazard ratio [HR], 0.71 [95% CI, 0.56 to 0.90]), breast cancer (HR, 0.43 [CI, 0.21 to 0.88]), and diabetes (HR, 0.70 [CI, 0.54 to 0.92]). Pooled analyses of primary prevention cohort studies showed that compared with the lowest quantile, the highest quantile of adherence to a Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduction in total cancer mortality (risk ratio [RR], 0.86 [CI, 0.82 to 0.91]; 13 studies) and in the incidence of total (RR, 0.96 [CI, 0.95 to 0.97]; 3 studies) and colorectal (RR, 0.91 [CI, 0.84 to 0.98; 9 studies]) cancer. Of 3 secondary prevention studies reporting cardiovascular outcomes, 1 found a lower risk for recurrent myocardial infarction and cardiovascular death with the Mediterranean diet. There was inconsistent, minimal, or no evidence pertaining to any other outcome, including adherence, hypertension, cognitive function, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and quality of life."

    Hence, the word "may" help. Some studies showed that the higher fat diet helped whilst others didn't show any difference. Hence, their conclusion that with limited information, they cannot really say either way.

    But I stand by my original point about the article. It DOES say repeatedly about higher fat diets possibly being better. I appreciate however it is a news article - and on the Daily Mail site!

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