For years now, The Mediterranean diet has been applauded as the better way to eat. It has got ringing endorsements from doctors, nutritionists and dieticians.
Aside from the health benefits, its popularity comes from the fact that the food tastes great and the fact that the diet isn’t that strict, which makes it easy to follow. Broadly speaking, the diet is known to be high in vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains and legumes, fish and unsaturated fats such as olive oil.
If you are considering the Mediterranean diet, here are four more reasons to help you make up your mind.
1. You can eat fat AND bread
Several diets advise against eating fats but this is not the case with the Mediterranean diet. You will find mono saturated fats in nuts, avocado, olives and olive oil. Here are smart ways to reduce trans-fat and incorporate more olive oil into your diet.
Bread is also one of the first things to go when someone says they are on a diet. This is because white bread can cause a spike in your blood sugar instead of delivering a more sustained release of energy. This will leave you feeling hungry soon after and needing to eat more. A whole grain bread which is high in fibre will counter that effect.
2. It is very heart-friendly
The diet is rich in mono saturated fats (present in olive oil and nuts) so it will help to lower your cholesterol. This in turn will reduce your risk of getting heart disease. According to studies, adults who followed the Mediterranean diet were 47% less likely to suffer heart disease.
Foods from the Mediterranean diet like grains and nuts can help your body manage blood sugar levels and this contributes to the prevention of diabetes.
3. It can aid in weight management
The Mediterranean diet focuses more on whole grains, vegetables and fresh food. It steers away from processed and sugar rich foods which can lead to unwanted weight gain for some. As mentioned above, the fibre present in the nuts and whole grains can help to maintain that feeling of satiety for longer.
4. Flavour is high on the agenda
Have you tried to follow a diet that is healthy but the food is devoid of all flavour? Because of all the spices and herbs used in the Mediterranean diet, food is full of flavour. Think of rosemary, cilantro and bay leaves. These spices can be added whether food is raw or cooked.
The Mediterranean region covers a number of countries; these include; Greece, Lebanon, Turkey, Tunisia, Spain and Israel and so many others. Each of these contributes something to the diet, making it diverse. You can’t fail to find a set of foods that you can enjoy daily.
The Mediterranean diet isn’t just about the food, it is also about a lifestyle. It encourages people to be more physically active, rest (Spanish siesta anyone?) and to enjoy food in the company of family of friends.