Mediterranean Diet With Extra Olive Oil May Lower Breast Cancer Risk : The Salt A study finds that women who ate a Mediterranean diet plus four tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil per day had a significantly lower risk of breast cancer compared with women on a low-fat diet.

Mediterranean Diet With Extra Olive Oil May Lower Breast Cancer Risk

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And now let's move on here. We are also tracking some health news - it's a way to reduce the risk of breast cancer. A new study suggests that women can do that by adopting a Mediterranean-style diet. NPR's Allison Aubrey reports.

ALLISON AUBREY, BYLINE: If you think about eating a Mediterranean diet, it's rich in foods such as whole grains, fish, vegetables and olive oil. This pattern of eating has already been linked to a lower risk of heart disease. Now, Miguel Martinez Gonzalez of the University of Navarra in Spain has published a new study evaluating breast cancer.

MIGUEL MARTINEZ GONZALEZ: We found a strong reduction in the risk of breast cancer.

AUBREY: Spanish women who were put on a traditional Mediterranean diet cut their risk by more than 50 percent. The studies published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Internal Medicine. And one of the journal's editors, Mitchell Katz, decided to include a note with the study flagging its significance.

MITCHELL KATZ: The important thing for Americans to know is that the healthiest diet consistently comes out - it's the one that's heavy in fruits and vegetables, extra virgin olive oil and fish.

AUBREY: Katz says more needs to be known about the links between breast cancer and diet, and he says it's hard to know which compound - or compounds - in the Mediterranean diet could be most beneficial. But he says given that the group of women with the lowest risk of breast cancer consumed about four tablespoons of olive oil in their diet each day...

KATZ: It makes you wonder whether or not it's something in the extra virgin olive oil.

AUBREY: Perhaps something to investigate in future studies. Allison Aubrey, NPR News.

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