The effect of high-polyphenol Mediterranean diet on visceral adiposity: the DIRECT PLUS randomized controlled trial

Hila Zelicha, Nora Kloting, Alon Kaplan, Anat Yaskolka Meir, Ehud Rinott, Gal Tsaban, Yoash Chassidim, Matthias Bluher, Uta Ceglarek, Berend Isermann, Michael Stumvoll, Rita Nana Quayson, Martin von Bergen, Beatrice Engelmann, Ulrike E. Rolle-Kampczyk, Sven Bastiaan Haange, Kieran M. Tuohy, Camilla Diotallevi, Ilan Shelef, Frank B. HuMeir J. Stampfer, Iris Shai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Mediterranean (MED) diet is a rich source of polyphenols, which benefit adiposity by several mechanisms. We explored the effect of the green-MED diet, twice fortified in dietary polyphenols and lower in red/processed meat, on visceral adipose tissue (VAT). Methods: In the 18-month Dietary Intervention Randomized Controlled Trial PoLyphenols UnproceSsed (DIRECT-PLUS) weight-loss trial, 294 participants were randomized to (A) healthy dietary guidelines (HDG), (B) MED, or (C) green-MED diets, all combined with physical activity. Both isocaloric MED groups consumed 28 g/day of walnuts (+ 440 mg/day polyphenols). The green-MED group further consumed green tea (3–4 cups/day) and Wolffia globosa (duckweed strain) plant green shake (100 g frozen cubes/day) (+ 800mg/day polyphenols) and reduced red meat intake. We used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to quantify the abdominal adipose tissues. Results: Participants (age = 51 years; 88% men; body mass index = 31.2 kg/m2; 29% VAT) had an 89.8% retention rate and 79.3% completed eligible MRIs. While both MED diets reached similar moderate weight (MED: − 2.7%, green-MED: − 3.9%) and waist circumference (MED: − 4.7%, green-MED: − 5.7%) loss, the green-MED dieters doubled the VAT loss (HDG: − 4.2%, MED: − 6.0%, green-MED: − 14.1%; p < 0.05, independent of age, sex, waist circumference, or weight loss). Higher dietary consumption of green tea, walnuts, and Wolffia globosa; lower red meat intake; higher total plasma polyphenols (mainly hippuric acid), and elevated urine urolithin A polyphenol were significantly related to greater VAT loss (p < 0.05, multivariate models). Conclusions: A green-MED diet, enriched with plant-based polyphenols and lower in red/processed meat, may be a potent intervention to promote visceral adiposity regression. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT03020186.

Original languageEnglish
Article number327
JournalBMC Medicine
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2022

Keywords

  • Mediterranean
  • Obesity
  • Plant-based diet
  • Polyphenols
  • Visceral adipose tissue

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The effect of high-polyphenol Mediterranean diet on visceral adiposity: the DIRECT PLUS randomized controlled trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this