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The Mediterranean Diet – a Heart Healthy Food Plan!

the Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean diet is not a diet as in “go on a diet”, rather it is a way of life and a way of eating that could promote optimal health and weight loss.  It has actually been recognized as a way of eating by the medical profession since the 1940’s.  However, it was not until the 1990’s that it became a mainstream model as a healthy plan of eating.  It still continues to make health news headlines today as a diet that lowers cholesterol, blood pressure and diabetes.  As little as two weeks ago, this diet was credited for reversing stroke risk in Heart.org, a journal for cardiologists.

And all this despite that this diet is not a low fat or low sodium diet!

The Mediterranean diet secret may lie in the abundant use of Virgin Olive Oil.  Olive oil contains a very high level of monounsaturated fat, including oleic acid which has been linked to a reduction in the risk of heart disease.  Other characteristics of this diet include a high consumption of fruits, vegetables and unrefined grains,  a moderate consumption of fish, dairy and red wine, and a low consumption of red meat.

Add to this, that with the exception of city dwellers, the people of this area lead a much more physically active lifestyle and you have a great model for healthy living in general.

Pros and Cons of The Mediterranean Dietmediterranean food list

Pros

  • Real whole foods that we can easily obtain
  • The whole family can enjoy this healthy way of eating
  • It is not a ‘diet’, it is a healthy lifestyle, therefore easier to maintain.

Cons

  • This is not about the diet, but more of a perception that people have.  I have seen people who feel that a plate of pasta and a bottle of wine ‘qualifies’ as a healthy ‘Mediterranean diet’ meal.
  • People want instant gratification and because this is not a fast weight loss diet, it is a long term way of eating to promote health, people tend to abandon it in favor of a crash diet.

 

If you would like to obtain some free articles and a newsletter concerning The Mediterranean Diet, you can get those here.

I have a co-worker who is Italian and has managed to stay very slim all of her life.  She grew up eating the Mediterranean foods as a natural way of eating and is very liberal with olive oils, avocado and other natural fats.  I love eating at her place and to me she is a living testament of how Mediterranean meals can be a way of life and a very healthy and enjoyable one at that!

Check below for some recommended books on getting the Mediterranean foods into your life!

The Mediterranean Prescription: Meal Plans and Recipes to Help You Stay Slim and Healthy for the Rest of Your Life The Mediterranean Diet for Beginners: The Complete Guide – 40 Delicious Recipes, 7-Day Diet Meal Plan, and 10 Tips for Success Genco Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 1 Gallon

 

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24 Responses to The Mediterranean Diet – a Heart Healthy Food Plan!

  1. Vene' Payton Artis says:

    I love Olive Oil! I have heard the many benefits of the Mediterranean diet and try to use olive oil as much as possible to stay abreast of any heart issues..

  2. Jennifer Clay says:

    I don’t think that I could do this diet… I don’t like peppers at all.

    • anitabreeze says:

      Jennifer, you do not have to eat a single pepper ever! The ‘secret’ to this healthy way of eating (IMO) is the heart healthy oils, physical activity and whole foods!

  3. MeliLovesCards says:

    I am part Armenian and Syrian… no wonder I love this food!!

  4. Irene Saadeh says:

    It absolutely is a way of life and a great choice for eating. As we lived in the mid east for many years, I lgot used to the great food and love love love it.

  5. Tina Ashburn says:

    LOVE the Mediterrian diet! The fresh foods, the salads, the cucumbers and tomatoes! Sure makes me realize how heavy are the foods that I eat.

  6. J & S says:

    My family and I are always looking for new healthy ways of eating and being healthy!
    I think we may have to try it! The kiddos my be a little difficult but its worth a shot!

  7. Deborah Munoz-Chacon says:

    I think the Mediterranean diet works so well because you’re eating whole food and olive oil. Being more physical helps too.

  8. Deanna says:

    One of the healthiest diets of any culture. i once visited Turkey and was so surprised by the meals even at breakfast i was served a plate of tomatoes, olives and cucumbers. creek olive oil is 300 times healthier than any other type.

  9. Lisa Hodges says:

    This is the best way to eat and we do try. I love antipasto platters for warm summer night dinners.

  10. Savannah-Lin Dofa says:

    Now that’s something I never saw before… don’t know if I would like it but never hurts to try…

  11. Robert Manea says:

    I never heard of this diet… maybe something to look into, cause it looks so good..

  12. Loretta Smith says:

    Those that I know of who are on a true Mediterranean diet are much healthier than those on the standard American diet!

  13. Karen Cuny Bradley says:

    I think I should be greek. I love all this food!

  14. Allen Hall says:

    diets by themself don’t work since they have a start date and a finish date. its a lifestyle change. that said my favorite food type is still thai

  15. Kathy Moitoza says:

    I love using olive oil in cooking, this all looks so yummy!

  16. Dov Shapira says:

    Now, that looks like home, I love it

  17. Robin Foose says:

    yes Mediterranean diet is very healthy for you…. becoming very popular

  18. Yvonne says:

    The olives look delightful!

  19. Don Purdum says:

    My wife is Greek, and when we married 20 years ago I had never been exposed to Mediterranean food and really didn’t like it. I guess you could say I was your normal Oklahoma meat and potatoes kind of guy. Now, I can’t get enough and prefer it all day long. It sure doesn’t hurt that my wife is an INCREDIBLE cook!!!!

  20. Tyler says:

    I love mediterranean food, and now that I hear it’s healthy that makes it even better. Thanks for the helpful advice!

  21. vinma says:

    I think Mediterranean food is awesome! I have had it quite a few times in my life and each time I was completely satisfied with the dish I had. This post is quite informative. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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