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New benefits are discovered for Mediterranean diet
A particular diet has been enjoying some popularity over the past few years, but there's new information that may extend the cuisine beyond fad status.
It's long been believed that the Mediterranean diet can help prevent heart disease, diabetes, joint diseases and cancer, but a new study found that it can also help prevent brain decline in elderly people.
In case you aren't familiar with it, the diet focuses on foods such as whole fruits and vegetables, whole grains, olive oils, legumes, nuts and seeds, herbs and spices.
Oh, and you don't have to give up alcohol -- it actually encourages drinking red wine in moderation for its antioxidant properties.
The latest study showed one drink for women and up to three drinks for men was associated with the decrease in brain loss.
Coincidentally, the Mediterranean diet covers all major food groups and comes close to American heart Association dietary recommendations, and is low in saturated fats.
It's not intended as a weight-loss diet, and it may seem more expensive to follow because of the need to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables, but some followers believe eliminating other expensive types of foods can make up the difference in cost.
It can also take extra time to cook, but at least one local restaurant concentrates on Mediterranean dishes, and one of the newest fast-food franchises offers this type of food, expecting to open more than two-dozen stores this year.
Read an original study here.