According to US researchers, eating a Mediterranean diet may help live long life as it seems to keep people genetically younger. There is possibility that vegetables, fresh fish, olive oil and fruits may stop our DNA code from scrambling as human body ages. The study was published in the British Medical Journal.
Nurses who followed the diet had fewer signs of cell ageing. Over more than a decade, the health of almost 5,000 nurses was followed by the researchers from Boston. The Mediterranean diet has been frequently associated to health gains, like decreasing the risk of heart disease.
Though, it is not clear accurately what makes it so good, its key components are large quantity of fresh fruit and vegetables or poultry and fish, rather than large numbers of red meat, butter and animal fats.
Foods rich in vitamins appear to give buffer against stress and damage of tissues and cells and it is clear from the latest study that a Mediterranean diet helps safeguard our DNA. In order to reach the conclusion, researchers studied tiny structures called telomeres that protect the ends of our chromosomes, which store our DNA code. It prevents a loss of genetic information at the time of cells division.
As we age these telomeres get shorter, leading the structural integrity to weaken and cells also stop dividing. According to experts, telomere length offers a window on cellular ageing. Shorter telomeres have been associated with a broad range of age-related diseases, involving heart disease and a variety of cancers. The nurses in the study who followed eating a Mediterranean diet had longer, healthier telomeres.
“All observational studies have the potential to produce misleading estimates, and we should not assume that the association with telomere length is necessarily causal”, said Dr. David Llewellyn, senior research fellow in clinical epidemiology at the University of Exeter.