A couple of months ago a reader asked me for my opinion of Dr. Esselstyn’s ‘Heart Attack Proof’ diet. This is essentially an extremely-low-fat diet that completely eliminates meat, fish, dairy, and all oils, including nuts. On the one hand, we know that extremely-low-fat diets are not the magic bullet in preventing heart disease that it once was thought to be (JAMA. 2006;295:655-666). On the other, adhering to this diet is extremely difficult for most people: simply avoiding any oil whatsoever (you can’t use oil in pasta sauces, breads, or salad dressings, just as a start) is pretty difficult. As I said then, “While the research that this was based on was somewhat flawed, in many ways that is irrelevant. Diets like this are simply not sustainable for most people.“
People find this hard to believe, but I’ll say it again (and again and again and again): eating healthy does not have to mean following a diet that takes any food away from you. Nor does eating healthy mean food can’t taste good.
Today’s research compares two variations of a Mediterranean diet with a low-fat diet of the type usually recommended for those at risk for heart disease. The True Heart Attack Proof Diet