A systematic overview of the scientific literature on the association between Mediterranean Diet and the Stroke prevention

Clin Ter. 2019 Sep-Oct;170(5):e396-e408. doi: 10.7417/CT.2019.2166.


Background: Stroke is the most common cardiovascular disorder after heart disease and one of the major causes of death and disability. Mediterranean diet has proven to be an effective means to prevent cardiovascular diseases and may contribute to the prevention of stroke. This overview aims to analyze all reviews that examine the association between Mediterranean diet pattern and stroke.

Methods: We conducted a literature search on PubMed and Scopus databases, using the keywords "Mediterranean diet" and "Stroke". All studies were selected evaluating the association between the Mediterranean diet and the prevention of stroke and only systematic reviews, meta-analysis and narrative reviews were included.

Result: 25 eligible articles were included (16 narrative reviews, 9 systematic reviews, 6 systematic reviews with meta-analyses). The authors stated that Mediterranean diet may be a useful means of preventing stroke, especially the 6 meta-analyses highlighted that high adherence to Mediterranean diet was protective against stroke, with a relative risk ranging from 0,64 (95% CI 0,48-0,88) to 0,90 (95% CI 0,87-0,93). Moderate adherence has not shown significant results.

Conclusion: A high adherence to the Mediterranean diet is inversely associated with stroke risk, and can modify the costs of its management, therefore the prevention policies should implement adherence to this healthy diet.

Keywords: Dietary habits; Healthy diet; Ictus; Mediterranean diet; Overview; Prevention; Stroke; Systematic.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Diet, Healthy / methods*
  • Diet, Mediterranean*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Humans
  • Primary Prevention / methods*
  • Risk
  • Stroke / diet therapy*
  • Stroke / prevention & control*