Maybe it’s time you ignored those who extol the virtues of a low-carb diet. A recent study from the Harvard School of Public Health reveals that eating whole grains improves health and may even help you live longer. According to a senior author of the study Dr Qi Sun, this research further endorses the current dietary guidelines that promote whole grains as one of the major healthful foods for the prevention of chronic diseases.

Using data from two famous long-term investigations, the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, Sun and team examined the role of a grain-rich diet in increasing the lifespan. The researchers looked at whole grain intake and mortality over a 25-year period, adjusting for things like overall diet (excluding grains), body mass index and smoking status to eliminate tertiary explanations.

It appears that bran, the hard, fibrous outer layer found in whole grains, may play a particular role in reducing health issues. Such a diet increases the lifespan, and reduces the risk of developing heart disease by 20 percent.

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Simona is a journalist who has worked with several leading publications in India over the last 17 years, writing on lifestyle topics and the arts, besides interviewing celebrities. She made the switch to public relations and headed the division as PR Manager at ITC Hotels’ flagship property, the ITC Grand Chola, but has since returned to her first love, journalism. Now she writes on food, which she is sincerely passionate about and wellness, which she finds fascinating and full of surprises. When she isn’t writing, she is busy playing the role of co-founder and communications director of The Bicycle Project, a six-year-old charity initiative that empowers tribal children in rural areas, while addressing the issue of urban waste.