Recent research shows that the kind of fat we eat may have an immediate impact on the flexibility of our arteries. Junk food is often high in saturated fat.
Canadian researchers compared blood flow through arteries after two different meals. The first was a Mediterranean-style meal of salmon, almonds and veggies cooked in olilve oil. Fifty-one percent of the calories came from fat, but it was mostly monounsaturated.
The other meal was made up of a sandwich with sausage, egg and cheese along with hash browns. Fifty-eight percent of the calories came from fat, the majority from saturated fat. Two hours and four hours after each meal the volunteers underwent ultrasound testing of their arteries. The arteries dilated twenty-four percent less after the sausage-egg sandwich while they had better dilation after the Mediterranean meal. Perhaps this helps explain why a Mediterranean diet is so good for the cardiovascular system.
[Canadian Cardiovascular Congress, Toronto, ON, Oct. 29, 2012]