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Mediterranean Diet

Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean Diet should really be called a “healthy lifestyle” rather than a diet! It is the regular way of life in Crete, other parts of Greece and Southern Italy. It includes physical activity (walking and cycling to get around) and promotes plant foods like vegetables and fruits; fish and poultry; and it encourages olive oil as the main source of fat. This way of life suggests very little red meat and “low to moderate” amounts of wine.

 

The Mediterranean Diet emphasizes:

  • olive oil (a monounsaturated fat) canola oil, and avocado; avoid butter/margarine (saturated fats)
  • fresh vegetables and fruit
  • beans – fresh and dried (good source of protein),
  • nuts and seeds
  • whole grain cereal, pasta, bread and crackers; brown rice
  • small to medium portions of poultry and dairy (fat-free milk, low-fat goat cheese or part-skim mozzarella, and fat-free or low-fat plain yogurt)
  • small to medium portions of fish and shellfish (rich in omega-3 fatty acid)
  • small portions of red meat
  • moderate wine intake (red), no more than 1 for women or 2 for men in a day (a serving=5 oz)
  • fresh herbs and spices instead of salt
  • small portions of fresh fruit and nuts instead of sweets and rich desserts