Mediterranean diet guide

Mediterranean diet guide

Let’s begin with a brief history lesson on the Mediterranean diet – approximately 57 years ago, the Italians and Greeks adopted this type of healthy eating in their daily lives. Hence, the name, “Mediterranean” from the inhabitants living near the Mediterranean sea. Consequently, these individuals surpassed Americans in their health status and were less likely to develop life-threatening diseases.  Not to mention, research has shown that this type of diet helps with weight loss and the prevention of type 2 diabetes, cardiac arrest, and a transient ischemic attack (stroke).

The nitty-gritty of the Mediterranean diet

O.k. to eat:  vegetables, seeds, whole grains, spices, extra virgin olive oil, fruits, legumes, breads, fish, nuts, potatoes, herbs, and seafood.

  • Vegetables – broccoli, onions, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, spinach, carrots, kale, cauliflower, and cucumbers
  • Seeds and nuts – Macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds, walnuts, cashews, almonds, hazelnuts, and pumpkin seeds
  • Whole grains – rye, buckwheat, corn, brown rice, barley, whole oats, whole wheat, pasta, and whole grain bread.
  • Spices and herbs – mint, nutmeg, basil, rosemary, cinnamon, garlic, sage, and pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil – any “healthy” fats to include avocados, avocado oil, and olives
  • Fruits – bananas, strawberries, figs, oranges, grapes, melons, apples, pears, dates, and peaches
  • Legumes – lentils, peanuts, beans, chickpeas, and peas
  • Fish and seafood – sardines, mackerel, clams, salmon, tuna, oysters, mussels, trout, shrimp, and crab
  • Potatoes – sweet potatoes, yams, regular potatoes, and turnips

O.k. to drink:  coffee, tea, water, and red wine (no more than 1 glass/day)

O.k. to eat occasionally:  eggs, yogurt, poultry, and cheese

O.k. to eat once in a blue moon:  red meat

Say NO to:  added sugars, refined grains and oils, processed meat and overly processed foods, sugar-sweetened beverages such as fruit juices

  • Added sugars – ice cream, soda, table sugar, and candy
  • Refined grains – pasta containing refined wheat and white bread
  • Refined oils – ex. canola oil, soybean oil, and cottonseed oil
  • Processed meat – hot dogs, bacon, salami, sausages, processed deli meat
  • Overly processed foods – the “low-fat’ or “diet” options and anything that appears to have come off a conveyor belt

Applying the Mediterranean diet when eating out

Since consuming fish is advised at least 2 times a week, make it your main course.  Also, if eating fried food, request for them to use extra virgin olive oil.  Lastly, choose whole grain bread with olive oil as your “spread.”

In a nut shell

The Mediterranean diet is all about eating foods from the earth and keeping animal food products to a minimal.  If you’d like to find have some recipes that follow this diet, check out this website,  http://allrecipes.com/recipes/16704/healthy-recipes/mediterranean-diet/

So there’s your Mediterranean diet guide!  Happy healthy eating to you!  Here’s to living your best life ever!  Feel free to leave me a comment or any additional insight you may have.

 

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