Other Diets & Books

The Atlantic Diet


The Atlantic Diet is not new. A ‘Southern European Atlantic Diet’ (from Northern Portugal and Galicia, a region in northwest Spain) has appeared in academic literature since 2010. The diet features whole foods and cooking from scratch and so it should have health benefits.

The first results from the GALIAT trial (2021 paper) reported that adults in the intervention group lost weight as opposed to controls who gained weight. The adjusted average (mean) difference was 1.1kg, which was tiny over 6 months. The intervention group reported lower total cholesterol – the adjusted mean difference was 5.2 mg/dL. Changes in triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, inflammation markers, blood pressure, and glucose metabolism were not observed. The cholesterol differences can easily be explained in the usual way – plant sterols. A number of the foods provided to the diet group (olive oil and vegetables) or recommended in the diet (nuts, especially chestnuts) lower cholesterol because they contain plant sterols. The impact on health is not good, however (Ref 14).

The 2024 Atlantic Diet publication claimed that diet group participants had lower risk of developing metabolic syndrome and fewer of the criterion for metabolic syndrome. These claims didn't withstand scrutiny – particularly in the context of previous claims by the same authors from the 2021 paper and some new additions.

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