A recent review performed a meta-analysis on studies within the last year to determine if consuming a Mediterranean-style diet had any influence on type 2 diabetes or not.
The 17 studies included in the review varied in nature in terms of their experimental protocols: 1 was a clinical trial, 9 were prospective studies,
and 7 were cross-sectional studies. Comparing studies with different experimental designs can be somewhat problematic, but there are ways to compare on a more broad scale.
Sticking to a Mediterranean diet led to a 23% decrease in the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Even when controlling for region, general health status, and several other potentially confounding factors, this decrease in risk of developing type 2 diabetes was still seen.
While not a be-all end-all “cure” for type 2 diabetes, according to this meta-analysis, eating and maintaining a Mediterranean-style diet could provide some nutritional benefit to those wishing to prevent development of the disease.
Does maternal diet during pregnancy have any influence on health outcomes of children relating to allergies? How about when the mother is
breast-feeding that child? Does her diet then have an influence on the child’s health?
A recent review performed a meta-analysis on 42 studies with a total of greater than 40,000 children to see if maternal diet during pregnancy and during lactation (breast-feeding) played any role in the health of those children.
The studies included in the review varied in nature in terms of their experimental protocols: 11 were intervention studies, 26 were prospective cohort studies, 4 were retrospective cohort studies, and 1 was a case-controlled study. Comparing studies with different experimental designs can be somewhat problematic, but there are ways to compare on a more broad scale.
There were no significant differences overall in eczema or asthma cases in the offspring of mothers eating a diet free of common food allergens. Some of the studies did note some associations, though nothing statistically significant was found.
One of the few consistent associations found related to those mothers consuming diets containing a lot of fruits, vegetables, fish, Vitamin D-rich foods, and in general foods pertaining to the Mediterranean diet. Children of these mothers were found to be associated with a lower risk of allergic disease.
Foods in the diet of pregnant and lactating mothers that were associated with a higher risk of allergic disease in children included vegetable oil, margarine, nuts, and fast food.
While this meta-review did not find statistically significant differences, it does provide some insights that a Mediterranean-like diet may consistently provide some benefit to their offspring in terms of a reduction in allergic disease prevalence. It can be difficult to compare studies that used markedly different experimental designs after the fact, so this positive association should indicate a need for further research on this topic.