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Cost and Cost-Effectiveness of the Mediterranean Diet: Results of a Systematic Review

Department of Public Health and Infectious Diseases, Sapienza University of Rome, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, Rome 00185, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2013, 5(11), 4566-4586;
Received: 10 September 2013 / Revised: 3 November 2013 / Accepted: 4 November 2013 / Published: 18 November 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mediterranean Diet Pattern and Public Health)
PDF [228 KB, uploaded 18 November 2013]


The growing impact of chronic degenerative pathologies (such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease) requires and pushes towards the development of new preventive strategies to reduce the incidence and prevalence of these diseases. Lifestyle changes, especially related to the Mediterranean diet, have the potential to modify disease outcomes and ultimately costs related to their management. The objective of the study was to perform a systematic review of the scientific literature, to gauge the economic performance and the cost-effectiveness of the adherence to the Mediterranean diet as a prevention strategy against degenerative pathologies. We investigated the monetary costs of adopting Mediterranean dietary patterns by determining cost differences between low and high adherence. Research was conducted using the PubMed and Scopus databases. Eight articles met the pre-determined inclusion criteria and were reviewed. Quality assessment and data extraction was performed. The adherence to the Mediterranean diet has been extensively reported to be associated with a favorable health outcome and a better quality of life. The implementation of a Mediterranean dietary pattern may lead to the prevention of degenerative pathologies and to an improvement in life expectancy, a net gain in health and a reduction in total lifetime costs. View Full-Text
Keywords: Mediterranean diet; systematic review; cost-analysis; cost-effectiveness; cost-utility; cost-benefit Mediterranean diet; systematic review; cost-analysis; cost-effectiveness; cost-utility; cost-benefit

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Saulle, R.; Semyonov, L.; La Torre, G. Cost and Cost-Effectiveness of the Mediterranean Diet: Results of a Systematic Review. Nutrients 2013, 5, 4566-4586.

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