The Mediterranean dietary pattern consists of:
- high intakes of plant-based foods such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes;
- moderate intakes of fish, poultry and low fat dairy products;
- use of extra virgin olive oil as the main dietary fat;
- limited red meat
- limited added sugars.
This dietary pattern has been found to reduce cardiovascular disease risk when compared to a low fat diet or typical American/Western diet. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends the Mediterranean diet as one of the eating plans than can prevent cardiovascular disease.
In this study, we want to see whether inclusion of full fat dairy products in place of non- and low-fat dairy in the Mediterranean diet can also improve risk factors for heart disease when compared to a Western-type diet.