The idea of eating a whole-food diet isn’t a new one, but what many of us probably think of when we think of a healthy lifestyle is one that doesn’t include a lot of processed foods.
However, this is a very old-fashioned idea that is often used to explain away eating a lot.
Read moreIt may be that there is something about eating a very healthy diet that gives you a greater chance of avoiding a range of health problems, but the science behind the idea of a whole diet may not be entirely clear.
A new study published in the journal PLOS One suggests that the idea that whole food diets are more beneficial than processed foods may be wrong.
Researchers from the Institute of Medical Research in Munich examined more than 100,000 adults over a period of five decades to investigate whether the idea was true or false.
“In our study, we found that eating a healthy whole food lifestyle is a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke,” the study authors wrote.
“There is no clear evidence that a healthy diet is a good predictor of health.”
According to the study, people with type 2 diabetics and people with high blood pressure who regularly ate a whole foods diet had significantly lower risk of heart disease and stroke than people who ate only a refined diet.
However, the authors pointed out that while these findings were statistically significant, the results were not consistent across different groups.
“The results of this study may be more indicative of a risk of developing diabetes and heart disease in the context of the overall risk factors, or the associations may be due to individual differences and confounding factors that are not included in our analysis,” the researchers wrote.
What the research means for youIf you want your whole-grain diet to help prevent heart disease or stroke, the new study is a welcome addition to the growing body of research that has found a link between a healthy dietary pattern and lower risk.
While whole-grains are thought to have a number of health benefits, the researchers said that they had not been able to determine whether whole grains are particularly effective at preventing heart disease.
“Our results do not imply that whole grains could be a good source of dietary fibre,” they wrote.
“The most important thing is that whole-meal consumption of whole grains can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and prevent stroke.”
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