'Nordic' Diet Lowers Cholesterol: Study

Thursday, 30 May 2013 03:38 PM

By Nick Tate

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You’ve heard about the Mediterranean diet. But how about the Nordic diet? If not, that may be about to change, thanks to new research showing the Nordic diet — heavy on berries, root vegetables, and legumes — lowers cholesterol levels, cardiovascular disease risks, and inflammation associated with pre-diabetes.
 
Lund University researchers who tracked a group of Swedes who ate a traditional Nordic diet had substantially lower levels of harmful LDL cholesterol and higher levels of "good" HDL cholesterol.

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The amount of harmful fat particles in the blood was also lower in those eating such a diet than individuals who do not follow the Nordic guidelines, said Lieselotte Cloetens, a biomedical nutrition researcher at Lund University.
 
The Nordic diet used in the study contains local produce such as berries, root vegetables, legumes, cabbage, nuts, game, poultry, and fish, as well as whole grains, rapeseed oil, and low-fat dairy products. Researchers compared the metabolic and heart health of Nordic dieters to individuals who did not follow such a diet, but instead consumed butter in place of rapeseed oil, fewer berries and vegetables, and more red meat and white bread intake.
 
The results showed health benefits of the Nordic diet were substantially greater than a diet heavier in animal fats, refined flour products, and fewer fruits and vegetables.
 
Cloetens said researchers will now focus on the diet's ability to maintain weight loss in a new study, noting the problem with most diets is maintaining the results.

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