Healthy Eating Patterns and Risk of Total and Cause-Specific Mortality

PMID: 36622660

It may or may not surprise you that I've seen several physician colleagues tell people it doesn't matter what they eat when a patient asks about nutrition recommendations for lab work or medical conditions. I graduated from medical school in 2013 and residency in 2016, and nutritional and lifestyle medicine education was nonexistent. I still have much to learn about nutrition, but reading studies like this help further my post-graduation training.

Nutrition is one of the big four factors in lifestyle medicine, along with sleep, exercise, and stress management. This prospective cohort study examined four dietary pattern indexes and total mortality risk. When comparing the highest quintile (healthiest nutritional patterns) vs. the lowest quintile (unhealthiest nutritional patterns), there was a 14% to 20% reduction in total mortality. There were also reductions in cardiovascular disease (6% to 13%), cancer (7% to 18%), and respiratory deaths (35% to 46%). Two indexes also showed an inverse association with mortality from neurodegenerative diseases (8% reduction). The results were consistent across a variety of different racial and ethnic groups.

It's great to show that different healthy eating patterns showed reductions in total and cause-specific mortality and that the patterns were consistent across multiple groups. There is no "best" nutritional strategy, and we must consider cultural and ethnic norms when addressing nutrition. I recommend working with a nutritional professional to improve your health from a dietary standpoint.

#godfirst #nutrition #longevity
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