The PREvención con DIeta MEDiterránea (PREDIMED) trial showed that Mediterranean diets (MedDiets) supplemented with either extravirgin olive oil or nuts reduced cardiovascular events, particularly stroke, compared with a control, lower fat diet. The mechanisms of cardiovascular protection remain unclear. We evaluated the 1-year effects of supplemented MedDiets on 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure (BP), blood glucose, and lipids. Randomized, parallel-design, controlled trial was conducted in 2 PREDIMED sites. Diets were ad libitum, and no advice on increasing physical activity or reducing sodium intake was given. Participants were 235 subjects (56.5% women; mean age, 66.5 years) at high cardiovascular risk (85.4% with hypertension). Adjusted changes from baseline in mean systolic BP were -2.3 (95% confidence interval [CI], -4.0 to -0.5) mm Hg and -2.6 (95% CI, -4.3 to -0.9) mm Hg in the MedDiets with olive oil and the MedDiets with nuts, respectively, and 1.7 (95% CI, -0.1 to 3.5) mm Hg in the control group (P<0.001). Respective changes in mean diastolic BP were -1.2 (95% CI, -2.2 to -0.2), -1.2 (95% CI, -2.2 to -0.2), and 0.7 (95% CI, -0.4 to 1.7) mm Hg (P=0.017). Daytime and nighttime BP followed similar patterns. Mean changes from baseline in fasting blood glucose were -6.1, -4.6, and 3.5 mg/dL (P=0.016) in the MedDiets with olive oil, MedDiets with nuts, and control diet, respectively; those of total cholesterol were -11.3, -13.6, and -4.4 mg/dL (P=0.043), respectively. In high-risk individuals, most with treated hypertension, MedDiets supplemented with extravirgin olive oil or nuts reduced 24-hour ambulatory BP, total cholesterol, and fasting glucose.
Clinical trial registration url: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: ISRCTN35739639.
Keywords: blood pressure; clinical trials, randomized; diet, Mediterranean; nuts; olive oil.
© 2014 American Heart Association, Inc.