The EU funded project NU-AGE discovered that relying on a Mediterranean style diet can delay aging .
Recently, at a conference in Brussels, researchers showed that a NU-AGE Mediterranean style diet, which was tested , decreased the levels of the protein known as C-reactive protein notably. The protein among the main inflammatory markers connected to the process of aging.
One more good effect of the diet was the lowered percentage of people with osteoporosis who suffered destruction of their bones.
There are still other issues which will be analyzed in future such as cardiovascular health , insulin sensitivity, digestive health and quality of life.
Prof. Claudio Franceschi, project coordinator from the University of Bologna, Italy stated that , “This is the first project that goes in such depths into the effects of the Mediterranean diet on health of elderly population. We are using the most powerful and advanced techniques including metabolomics, transcriptomics, genomics and the analysis of the gut microbiota to understand what effect, the Mediterranean style diet has on the population of over 65 years old” .
A new personally created, Mediterranean diet was given to volunteers to check if it delay the process of aging. The project was carried out in five European countries:the UK, France, Italy,Poland and the Netherlands, and 1142 people took part in it.
Men and Women are different as well as participants coming from the various countries. Participants from five countries had different genetics, body composition, , response to diet, blood measurements, cytomegalovirus positivity and inflammatory parameters as well as agreement to the study.
NU-AGE’s researchers took in mind the socio-economic factors of food choices and health information as well as the most important obstacles to the ability to improve the diet quality.
There were huge country differences as with biological markers. They were noticed in the comparison of a few aspects, for example of the general nutrition knowledge.
In France and the UK more than 70 percent of people who took part in the project believed that they had high knowledge of nutrition whereas in Poland only 31 percent of participants thought so.
Also, when older people buy food products, there are differences in the reactions for the nutrition information on the food description in each country (A person from Poland may find an information to be more important than a person from Italy may do.
In conclusion, participants from various countries accept and believe nutrition claims in different ways.
The nutrition claims seemed to be better understood by those who were from the Netherlands and the UK than by the French participants, and people from Poland and Italy came last. In terms of trust, over 40 percent of Italian participants considered the nutrition claims on food products to be true, while only 20 percent of British participants thought as them. However experts were astonished by the information that there were no differences observed between men and women in terms of their nutrition knowledge.
As a conclusion, Franceschi said, “The NU-AGE conference was a great success and allowed us to share the most recent results of the project as well as decide on the next steps and future work