News agency TT reports that this study, carried out at Uppsala University, is the first of its kind, comparing how eating habits affect the amount of toxins that we get into our bodies. Previous studies have looked at toxins in single food items.
The study found that the mediterranean diet, as well as a diet low on carbohydrates, but high on proteins (LCHF), consists of higher levels of toxins such as PCB. The same is also true for mercury and pesticides.
The Swedish food agency advices people to eat half a kilo of fruit and vegetables every day, and to eat fish rather than meat. This makes it pretty similar to the mediterranean diet, which often is hailed as a healthy diet. So why is it more toxic?
"That is hard to tell," said Erika Ax, doctoral candidate, who carried out the study. "This way of measuring the diet is very complex, so it is hard to tell what drives the connections that we can see."
The findings, published in the magazine Environmental International, do not mean one should stop following the Mediterranean diet, said Ax. "The advantage of such a diet outweighs any possible disadvantages of a possible exposure to toxins," she said.
According to Ax, no one should have to change their diet just because of this study, but there is a need for more knowledge about the health effects from toxins in the food. 800 people took part in the study.