Regular consumption of the modern Western diet is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Whereas those who consume traditional diets are protected from circulatory problems. The Mediterranean diet is the traditional diet of the indigenous people of the Mediterranean areas of Southern Italy, France and Greece. This diet has been extensively studied and evidence suggests that it is particularly cardioprotective.
Research suggests that the Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. One component of the Mediterranean diet that is thought to provide at least some of this protection is olive oil. Studies show that olive oil can lower blood cholesterol levels by around 10 %, and in particular, can cause reductions in low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) and lipoprotein(a), two of the lipoproteins associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.