MANY of us start January intent on making grand, sweeping improvements to our lives.

And for many Brits that involves eating more healthily.

But what does eating 'more healthily' actually mean and what diets are actually worth following?

The foods we eat play a huge role in our physical shape, mental health and how long we live for.

Researchers based in China, have discovered the four best diets to help keep the ticker going.

In the new study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers followed over 100,000 men and women from the age of 50 to track how diet impacted longevity.

Read more on diets

I’m a dietitian & here’s the best diet for your body – it’s key to weight loss

I’m a PT – from lemon coffee to salt water flushing 5 diets to quit in 2023

Read more on diets

I’m a dietitian & here’s the best diet for your body – it’s key to weight loss

I’m a PT – from lemon coffee to salt water flushing 5 diets to quit in 2023

All participants followed one of four diets – all of which helped people live longer by lowering their risk of developing several diseases.

The researchers concluded that "multiple healthy eating patterns can be adapted to individual food traditions and preferences".

1. Healthy eating index

The healthy eating index is a measure of the overall quality of someone's diet.

It's a points based system which is scored out of a possible 100.

Most read in Diet & Fitness

MADE TO MOVE

I'm a PT – here are 15 bodyweight moves that will transform your figure

NO SWEAT

Vicky Pattison tests bargain high street gym wear – the cheapest rivals designer

SHAPE OF YOU

I'm a dietitian & here's the best diet for your body – it’s key to weight loss

WEIGH TO GO

18 expert hacks to help you lose a STONE in just one month

Points are assigned based on the amount of grains, vegetables, fruit, milk, meat, calories, fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium and variety is found in a diet.

A diet with a score greater than 80 is considered healthy.

Those who followed the diet and used the healthy eating index to track their food were less likely to die prematurely from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and respiratory disease, the research found.

2. Mediterranean Diet

A Mediterranean diet is high in foods that are good for you, and low in 'naughty' foods, such as those with a high sugar content.

The NHS explains: “The Mediterranean diet varies by country and region, so it has a range of definitions.

“But in general, it's high in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, beans, cereals, grains, fish, and unsaturated fats such as olive oil.

“It usually includes a low intake of meat and dairy foods.”

The scientists found those who stuck with the Mediterranean diet were also less likely to die of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and respiratory disease.

They were also less likely to die from neurodegenerative diseases, such as dementia.

3. Plant-based diet

A plant-based diet, sometimes called a vegan diet,consists solely of beans, grains, fruits, nuts, seeds and vegetables.

However, there are many substitutes which can be used in place of animal-based ingredients.

For example, cow's milk can be replaced with soy milk, and vegan margarine is a great alternative to butter.

The research found those who stuck to a vegan diet were less likely to die from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and respiratory disease, compared with those who didn't follow the diet.

 4. Alternate healthy eating index

The alternative healthy eating diet assigns ratings to foods and nutrients predictive of chronic disease.

Those on the diet would eat a variety of foods including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds, lean meat, seafood, eggs, milk, yogurt, and cheese.

They would limit foods that are low in vitamins and minerals and avoid foods with added sugar.

Read More on The Sun

I worked at Yankee Candle – many don’t know our ‘jar for jar’ policy

Love Island’s first ever ‘blind’ contestant Ron Hall unveiled

Those who followed the alternate healthy eating index diet were less likely to die early prematurely from cardiovascular disease, cancer, and respiratory disease, the research found.

They were also less likely to die from neurodegenerative disease, such as dementia, experts found.

Source: Read Full Article