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The Mediterranean diet is more than food on a plate

The Mediterranean diet is more than food on a plate
  • It emphasises values of hospitality, neighbourliness, intercultural dialogue and creativity, and a way of life guided by respect for diversity.
  • Shared family meals help people eat well and avoid excess, while the TV dinner habit is linked to obesity.
  • It involves a set of skills, knowledge, rituals, symbols and traditions concerning crops, harvesting, fishing, animal husbandry, conservation, processing, cooking and particularly the sharing and consumption of food.

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The Mediterranean diet

It is not a weight-loss regime such as the Atkins or Dukan diets. It is actually not a prescriptive diet at all, rather a pattern of eating.

It is based on a rural life where people ate what they grew. It has no preservatives. It is freshly picked, plucked and cooked.

Principles of the Mediterranean diet
  • It is based on large amounts of fruit and vegetables, legumes, whole grains and especially olive oil.
  • Fish and seafood depends on how close to the sea you live.
  • Chicken, eggs and small amounts of dairy, such as cheese and yoghurt, are there in moderation.
  • The diet includes a small amount of wine with meals
  • It is quite a high-carbohydrate diet (pasta, bread and potatoes).
  • Red meat and sweets would rarely be consumed.
  • It is accompanied by quite a lot of physical activity. 

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Key components of the Mediterranean diet
  • Eating of primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts
  • Replacing butter with healthy fats such as olive oil and canola oil
  • Using herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods
  • Limiting red meat to no more than a few times a month
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Enjoying meals with family and friends
  • Drinking red wine in moderation (optional)
  • Getting plenty of exercise.

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Humans evolved on a diet very different from today's eating habits. To be healthier, leaner, stronger and fitter, we must re-think our diet and remove some of the food groups we consider basic.

Except

Paleo fans tend to overlook the fact that hunter-gatherers were not models of pristine health. Palaeolithic humans suffered from parasites, infectious diseases, and even atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).

Pros of the Mediterranean Diet
  • General Nutrition. It encourages a variety of nutrient-dense foods.
  • Heart Health. It is associated with reduced risk of coronary heart disease, heart attack and overall mortality.
  • Better Blood Sugar Control. It 

    was able to lower Hemoglobin A1C levels by up to 0.47 %, as compared with control diets.
  • Mental Health a 2018 study found those following a Mediterranean diet were 33% less likely to develop incident depression than those not following a Mediterranean diet.

  • Weight Management. Research has found that people do not gain weight when following a Mediterranean diet.

  • Reduces Inflammatory Markers.

  • Cancer Prevention.meta-analysis found that those who adhered most closely to the Mediterranean diet had a lower risk of developing colorectal cancer, breast cancer, gastric cancer, liver cancer, head and neck cancer and prostate cancer.