#47 The Mediterranean Diet
Some of the world’s healthiest and longest lived people follow a Mediterranean diet.
It is a way of eating that has been around for thousands of years and is especially beneficial for women’s health.
A study looking at the length of telomeres in 5,000 women found that those following a Mediterranean style diet were biologically younger than those who weren’t.
Women eating this way have less obesity, heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's and stroke. Combine this way of eating with exercise and the health risks listed above reduce by 83%.
So it is a no-brainer, why wouldn’t you eat this way. If these reduced risks were offered in the form of a wonder pill we all would be taking it!
There is also a reduced risk of Breast Cancer because eating this way is low in animal fat which helps our bodies to balance our oestrogen. This also correlates to fewer, and less severe menopausal symptoms.
- This is really a lifestyle rather than a diet. People have eaten this way for a millennia
- Food is to be savored and enjoyed with family and friends. Meals are long and slow and not to be wolfed down in front of the TV
- The quality of the food itself is paramount. Beautiful, seasonal, locally grown produce over mass produced convenience foods
- First place is given to vegetables, (cooked with tomatoes and olive oil), wholegrains (rough grainy bread) and legumes (lentils, beans, chickpeas)
- Seasonal fruits are used for desserts
- Nuts and seeds are used with meals and as snacks
- Extra virgin olive oil is used for cooking and dressings
- Herbs and spices are used for flavour
- Fish and shellfish are used in moderation
- A small amount of poultry (chicken)
- Small amount Yoghurt (mainly from goat milk)
- Water is the primary drink
- Meals are enjoyed with small amounts of red wine
- A little dark chocolate and an espresso coffee to finish
Overall this way of eating is:
- High in fibre and complex carbs from vegetables and in season fruit
- High in vitamins and minerals
- Low in animal fat and processed carbs
- Often the main meal is at lunch time with a smaller evening meal
- Red meats and cheeses are for special occasions only
If you are currently eating a western style diet you will drop body fat and lose weight if you make the switch.
But make sure that you portion control the olive oil, nuts, seeds and chocolate. Whilst maxing out on the vegetables.
For more info on how to switch to a healthier way of eating CLICK HERE FOR THE MEDITERRANEAN DIET CHECK LIST
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