There are a plethora of diets to lose weight in today’s world, but there are also many diets that instill a lifestyle change, and when followed can help prevent disease, and change your overall health. The diet of the Mediterranean Region has been studied time over time, and always comes out at the top. This diet has endless health benefits, and even tastes great!

So what makes up the Mediterranean diet, and why is it highly recommended?

  • Olive oil: The Mediterranean region consumes large amounts of olive oil because of the ample supply of olives. Olives have been shown to be associated with many positive health outcomes. Olive oil is a simple ingredient that can be incorporated into any diet in many ways. It’s a much healthier option over butter or vegetable oil, and tastes great!
  • Omega-3s: Fish and nut consumption are all great sources of omega-3, found in the Mediterranean diet. Walnuts, which are a staple of this region, contain high amounts of omega-3. Fresh local fish is consumed at least 2 times a week, proving healthy amounts of omega-3 as well. Omega-3 can help lower cholesterol and is recommended by the American Heart Association to help heart health.
  • Whole Grains: Whole grains that are consumed in the Mediterranean region also benefit health. The main grains of this region are Bulgar, couscous and pasta. These whole, minimally processed grains are high in fiber, which is an important aspect of any diet.
  • High fish intake, low red-meat intake: Consuming fish at least twice a week, and eating red meat, particularly lamb, no more than twice a month helps lower cholesterol and increase omega-3. Although red meat is an important source of iron, too much can be detrimental to health. Keeping a strict limit on red meat intake is helpful in controlling your health and staying healthy!
  • Red Wine: Too much alcohol can deter health, but in small amounts, red wine can actually contribute to a healthier lifestyle. Red wine contains many antioxidants that can prevent cancers and prevent heart disease by increasing HDL cholesterol.

The Health Benefits: The Mediterranean diet is continuously associated with positive health and the prevention of many severe health conditions.

  • Lower rates of Coronary Heart Disease: Studies comparing heart disease and heart health have shown the Mediterranean region, mainly Greece, to have the lowest rates worldwide with that of Finland, Japan, United States and Yugoslavia.
  • Reduction of oxidation of LDL
  • Decrease in Inflammation
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Prevention of blood clotting
  • Longer life

Overall, the Mediterranean diet is a heart-healthy diet rich in fish, nuts and olives. Although it is a lifestyle change, this change can improve health, and set you on track for a longer, healthier life!

Learn more about this amazing diet–see our overview on the Mediterranean Diet.

Do you eat this way? Share your experiences with the Mediterranean Diet


Sources:

Mediterranean Diet on FoundHealth
Mayo Clinic

Mediterranean Diet.com

CBS News

 

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