What is the Mediterranean Diet?

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Aug. 11, 2015 - PRLog -- The most common version of Mediterranean diet was created by Dr Walter Willett of Harvard University's School of Public Health. This diet emphasizes on high consumption of plant foods, such as legumes, unrefined cereals, fresh vegetables and fruits. Fresh fruits are usually served as daily dessert. The main source of fat used in this diet is virgin olive oil, which is high in monounsaturated fat. Dairy products (especially yogurt and cheese), which are a good source of calcium, are allowed in moderate. Fish (especially fatty fish) is eaten regularly in the Mediterranean diet, about four times weekly. Poultry is consumed in low to moderate amounts, while red meat and meat products are consumed in low amounts as they contain saturated fat. For egg, the maximum amount allowed is seven per week. Wine is taken in low to moderate amounts daily, usually a small glass at meal times. The total fat in this diet contributes about 25% to 35% of the total calories.

When you first heard about the Mediterranean Diet, you may think that it is just another fad diet for losing weight. However, the truth it is not. The Mediterranean Diet is more appropriate to be considered as a living lifestyle. It is actually the lifestyle of peoples living around the Mediterranean Sea in the early 1960s, which includes Greece, southern Italy, southern France, Spain, as well as some countries of the Middle East. It is one of the best ways to live with if you want a high quality of life.

The main characteristics of this Mediterranean lifestyle are high daily physical activities, having diet with Mediterranean nutrition, life with low stress as well as not money oriented. This lifestyle can be considered as the healthiest in the world as it delays aging and promotes long life. It is also great in preventing many diseases, e.g. stroke and heart attack. It may also help in preventing metabolic syndrome, lung disease, allergies etc. This special Mediterranean culture was declared as Immaterial Human Heritage by UNESCO in year 2010. It is a great culture that worth to be learned immediately.

Although it is named as “Mediterranean Diet”, this diet is not a diet of typical Mediterranean cuisines. As stated earlier, the main fat for cooking in Mediterranean Diet is olive oil. However, the cuisines for Northern Italy for example, are usually cooked with butter or lard while for North Africa, clarified butter and sheep's tail fat are always used for cooking.

When talking about following a Mediterranean Diet, you need to choose the right foods as well as avoiding unhealthy foods. Always go for fresh and natural food and avoid artificially hydrogenated products that contain trans-fats.
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Page Updated Last on: Sep 11, 2015

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