The effects of consuming a Mediterranean style diet on associated COVID-19 severity biomarkers in obese/overweight adults: A systematic review

Ella Moore, Abdulmannan Fadel, Katie E. Lane

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: COVID-19 severity is strongly associated with high Body Mass Index (BMI) (≥25kg/m2) amongst adults and elevated inflammatory markers have enabled prediction of disease progression. The composition of a Mediterranean diet provides favourable outcomes on weight reduction and inflammatory markers. Aim: This systematic review aimed to investigate the effects of consuming a Mediterranean diet on BMI and inflammatory markers of obese/overweight adults (≥18 years) at risk of developing severe COVID-19 outcomes. Methods: PubMed Central, Cochrane Library and MEDLINE databases were searched to identify randomised controlled trials published between January 2010 to August 2021 evaluating the impact of Mediterranean diet on BMI and inflammatory markers in overweight/obese adults. The review followed the PRISMA checklist, used Cochrane Collaboration search strategies, and is PROSPERO registered (CRD42021277070). Two authors independently screened and evaluated studies for methodological quality. Papers were extracted and included based eligibility, despite risk of bias scores. Results: Of 65 extracted records, six studies met the eligibility criteria and were included. Reductions in BMI, TNF-α, IL-6 and hs-CRP were reported amongst most findings, the majority of which were significant. Conclusion: The main findings indicate a hypocaloric, fibre dense Mediterranean diet is a short-term (<4 months) mitigation strategy to significantly reduce BMI and inflammatory markers amongst overweight/obese adults at risk of developing severe COVID-19 outcomes. Further research is now needed to examine the role of Mediterranean diet in COVID-19 prevalence, severity, morbidity and mortality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)647-667
Number of pages21
JournalNutrition and Health
Volume28
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • biomarkers
  • BMI
  • COVID-19
  • hypocaloric diet
  • Mediterranean diet
  • non-communicable disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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