The Mediterranean diet is a nutritional model inspired by the food models widespread in some countries of the Mediterranean basin, inspired by the eating habits of Spain, Italy and Greece in the 1960s. The diet was recognized by UNESCO as a protected asset and included in the list of oral and intangible heritages of humanity in 2010.
The diet is based on foods whose consumption is habitual in countries of the Mediterranean basin, in a proportion that favors cereals, fruit, vegetables, seeds, olive oil, compared to a more rare use of red meat and animal fats, while it moderate consumption of fish, white meat, legumes, eggs, dairy products, red wine and sweets.
The Mediterranean diet is associated with a reduction in all-cause mortality in observational studies. The Mediterranean diet can help with weight loss in obese people. The Mediterranean Diet on Sleep: A Health Alliance study, published in the Nutrients, looks back on the issue.
The researchers said: "The Mediterranean diet is a plant-based, antioxidant-rich, unsaturated fat dietary pattern that has been consistently associated with lower rates of noncommunicable diseases and total mortality, so that it is considered one of the healthiest dietary patterns.
Clinical trials and mechanistic studies have demonstrated that the Mediterranean diet and its peculiar foods and nutrients exert beneficial effects against inflammation, oxidative stress, dysmetabolism, vascular dysfunction, adiposity, senescence, cognitive decline, neurodegeneration, and tumorigenesis, thus preventing age-associated chronic diseases and improving wellbeing and health.Nocturnal sleep is an essential physiological function, whose alteration is associated with health outcomes and chronic diseases.
Scientific evidence suggests that diet and sleep are related in a bidirectional relationship, and the understanding of this association is important given their role in disease prevention.In this rev iew, we surveyed the literature concerning the current state of evidence from epidemiological studies on the impact of the Mediterranean diet on nighttime sleep quantity and quality.
The available studies indicate that greater adherence to the Mediterranean diet is associated with adequate sleep duration and with several indicators of better sleep quality. Potential mechanisms mediating the effect of the Mediterranean diet and its foods and nutrients on sleep are described, and gap-in-knowledge and new research agenda to corroborate findings are discussed."