Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier
WebMD

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine
WebMD

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion
    WebMD

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community
    WebMD

    Community

    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Mediterranean Diet Helps Prevent and Treat Metabolic Syndrome continued...

“This is an excellent study in terms of depth -- to combine 50 studies for a total of over half a million participants is tremendous and gives excellent ... information,” says Jessica Bartfield, MD, an internist at Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, part of Loyola University Health System in Maywood, Ill.

“The conclusion that consumption of a Mediterranean diet lowers the prevalence and progression of the metabolic syndrome helps better support data from trials that already suggest this,” she says in an email. “We know omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in olive oil and other monounsaturated fats, are anti-inflammatory.”

Inflammation is a known risk factor for heart disease and stroke, she says. “It makes sense that a Mediterranean diet can tame this inflammation and provide a protective benefit,” she says.

That said, the new study does have its share of limitations. “The studies varied greatly in terms of length with some as short as four weeks, some as long as four years, and only a few were conducted in the U.S. population where the food culture varies tremendously by region,” she says.

But “in the never-ending quest for the ‘perfect diet’ -- low-fat, high-protein, low-carb, no-sugar ... I would say that the Mediterranean diet comes pretty close,” she says.

Simple Changes, Big Benefits

Suzanne Steinbaum, MD, director of women and heart disease at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, is a big advocate of the Mediterranean lifestyle. “This is the only thing I recommend for people,” she says. “This is a lifestyle, not a diet."

Little changes go a long, long way, she says.

“Fats don’t have to be creamy,” she says. “Cook with a tomato-based sauce with olive oil, and get rid of fried foods and grill with olive oil instead,” she says. “Choose different grains instead of white rice, and eat more fish and nuts and legumes and vegetables."

Being more active is also a part of this lifestyle, she says.

WebMD Health News

Healthy Recipe Finder

Browse our collection of healthy, delicious recipes, from WebMD and Eating Well magazine.

Top searches: Chicken, Chocolate, Salad, Desserts, Soup

Healthy Recipe Finder