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Mediterranean diet and telomere length in Nurses’ Health Study: population based cohort study

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g6674 (Published 02 December 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g6674

Re: Mediterranean diet and telomere length in Nurses’ Health Study: population based cohort study

I found Crous-Bou, et al.’s (2014) study on the Mediterranean Diet and telomere length and finding that “greater adherence to the Mediterranean diet was associated with longer telomeres” to be fascinating (1). This brought to mind another recent study that might shine some more light on the connection between telomere length with the Mediterranean Diet and better health. According to Robin, et al (2014), “…telomere length regulates gene expression long before telomeres become short enough to produce a DNA damage response….” This could help explain how greater telomere length with the Mediterranean Diet might influence health outcomes. The area of regulation of gene expression and how this contributes to phenotype is a topic that is getting much attention in recent years and one that I find fascinating to read about.

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1. Crous-Bou M, Fung TT, Prescott J, Julin B, Du M, Sun Q, Rexrode KM, Hu FB, De Vivo I. Mediterranean diet and telomere length in Nurses' Health Study: population based cohort study. BMJ. 2014 Dec 2;349:g6674.

2. Robin JD, Ludlow AT, Batten K, Magdinier F, Stadler G, Wagner KR, Shay JW, Wright WE. Telomere position effect: regulation of gene expression with progressive telomere shortening over long distances. Genes Dev. 2014 Nov 15;28(22):2464-76.

Competing interests: No competing interests

04 December 2014
Celia M. Ross
writer
self-employed
Wilmington Delaware, USA