Starkie's Newsletter: Diet Information

What is the Mediterranean diet?

For many years now the Mediterranean diet (MD) has been covered extensively by the media. This diet has been used by indigenous peoples of the Mediterranean areas such as Greece, Crete, Italy, Spain, and other countries in the region for years. For the most part this diet consists of foods that are grown in these countries and their surrounding areas.

One of the advantages of the MD is the fact that it is considered cardiovascular protective. In fact many individuals following the MD have a statistically significant reduction in Cardio Vascular Disease (CVD).

Although many researchers have tried to figure out why there is a reduction in CVD, research continues to point in a few different directions. One thing that is acceptable knowledge is the fact the MD has abundant amounts of polyphenols in the foods associated with the diet. One attribute of the rich polyphenols diet is that a reduction in blood pressure seems to be imminent. Polyphenols are found in virtually all types of food plants including fruits and vegetables (berries, grapes, and wine being exceptionally popular) olive oil, legumes, nuts, cocoa, green, black and white teas in addition to pomegranates just to mention a few. Additionally polyphenols also reduce total cholesterol and improve lipid blood markers. One study indicated a reduction in mortality by 37%, for those who used the MD diet.

Paleo Diet and Iodine deficiency:

The Paleo diet was popular during the 1980’s because of people such as Jeffrey Bland. This diet has seen a big resurgence again within the last couple of years and for good reason. This diet seems to be a more effective way to lose weight. Additionally, during the last 10 plus years the Cross-Fit community has taken this diet to a new popularity by making the Paleo diet the diet of choice. This diet emphasizes the consumption of fruits and vegetables, meats, sea foods, eggs, oils, seeds, but no milk and salt which typically has some iodine. Although this diet is popular, there are recent studies that indicate that a Paleo diet which avoids the use of table salt has seen an increase in iodine deficiency for females. To compensate for this deficiency, please make sure that supplemental iodine or foods rich in iodine (kelp or seaweeds) are part of your regular diet.


  1. High adherence to the Mediterranean diet is associated with cardiovascular protection in higher but not in lower socioeconomic groups: prospective findings from the Moli-sani study.Bonaccio M, Di Castelnuovo A, Pounis G, Costanzo S, Persichillo M, Cerletti C, Donati MB, de Gaetano G, Iacoviello L; Moli-sani Study Investigators.Int J Epidemiol. 2017 Aug 1. doi:10.1093/ije/dyx145.
  2. Mediterranean diet, dietary polyphenols and low grade inflammation: results from the MOLI-SANI study.Bonaccio M, Pounis G, Cerletti C, Donati MB, Iacoviello L, de Gaetano G; MOLI-SANI Study Investigators.Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2017 Jan;83(1):107-113. doi: 10.1111/bcp.12924. Epub 2016 May 3. Review.PMID:26935858
  3. Downey, Life Extension Magazine LE publications Inc. 3600 West Commercial Blvd. Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309. , Mediterranean Diet Delays Aging, vol. 23 number 11, November 2017, pg 46-54.
  4. Aluko, Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC New York, NY. 2012, Pg 63-85, 127-39.
  6. A Paleolithic-type diet results in iodine deficiency: a 2-year randomized trial in postmenopausal obese women.Manousou S, Stål M, Larsson C, Mellberg C, Lindahl B, Eggertsen R, Hulthén L, Olsson T, Ryberg M, Sandberg S, Nyström HF.Eur J Clin Nutr. 2017 Sep 13.10.1038/ejcn.2017.134.