Whenever we hear the word Mediterranean, the mind recalls of some countries like France, Greece and Spain, which are bathed by the Mediterranean Sea. It is easy to guess from the name “Mediterranean Diet” that it is a type of diet where you see influences of the mentioned country’s cuisine and culinary.
This particular diet became popular during the 1990’s. On November 2010, when UNESCO recommended this diet, its popularity increased manifold and gained ground in overseas countries as well. However, people from countries like Greece or Spain don’t consider it as a simple form of diet that keeps one healthy and fat free. To them, it is something that represents their culture, their food practices and everything from local wine to native activities.
The diet chart consists of simple, easy to prepare yet delicious dishes like Warm Pita, Spinach sauté with sprinkled lemon, Fragrant Couscous, etc. Native vegetables and other ingredients are used mostly to prepare these dishes and the use of imported ingredients is rare. Here you will learn in brief some interesting facts about the diet and its health benefits.
Why the Mediterranean Diet is Different
Any nutritionist or diet specialist will admit that one must consume all the necessary nutrients like protein, fat, minerals, carbohydrate, etc. every day to stay healthy and fit. This is where the diet differs from other traditional diet charts because it consists of food items, which are rich in all the mentioned nutrients.
Vegetables you use to prepare the dishes are sources of minerals and vitamins whereas the corn flour-made food items balance the need for carbohydrates. Sometimes dairy products like cheese or yogurt are also used to supply with a sufficient amount of proteins. The calorie you absorb through these foods is easy to burn as olive oil is always used for cooking the items. On the other hand, Mediterranean fruits like grapes, jujube, lemon and others detoxify your body and prevent fat accumulation. It is like a dual-purpose diet that cares for your nutritional needs while controlling obesity.
Mediterranean Diet and Weight Loss
When you talk about weight loss and think of practicing something new to make it fast, it is good always to gain a first-hand experience, instead of depending on others’ suggestions. One noticeable difference between this and the western diet form is that the diet is not rich in preservatives and animal fat. Rather more fresh vegetables and fruits are used to make the foods tasty yet healthy. Naturally, it can be said that if one follows the diet chart perfectly he or she can expect better result.
Now, it is time to check how this diet modifies the process of reducing fat.
• Replaces red meat based foods with healthy substitutes like poultry items and sea fish
• Maximize vegetable intake that keeps you fuller, gives energy and control fat as well.
• The food has less in salt and saturated fat, which are highly responsible for faster weight gaining
• Even snacks are made of low fat (sometimes zero fat) ingredients like unsalted nuts, dry fruits and general fruits.
• Their special red wine keeps you glowing while purifying your blood.
The Mediterranean Diet Pyramid
The Mediterranean diet pyramid describe the diet chart properly and this pyramid also explains which food items you should take and in what portions. To follow a diet chart properly, it is also important to know about the quantity of food taken, which is also mentioned in this pyramid.
The diet pyramid says that an adult should consume a half cup of prepared vegetables along with a full cup of leafy raw vegetables. Potatoes should not be consumed by more than 100 grams per day. If you want to lose weight, you must take at least 100 gram of dry beans, even if you forget to have anything else. Fruits like banana, orange, grapes (30 grams), one apple, and watermelon (200 grams) should be there too in your diet chart.
Don’t take dairy items like egg, milk, cheese and yogurt more than once in a week. In addition, you should be careful about the serving of red wine, as men should not take more than three glasses (small glasses) of wine. Women should stick to two small glasses only and not more.
Other Health Benefits
Research reports say that patients suffering from diseases like diabetes-type 2, high blood pressure, obesity, Alzheimer and cardiovascular diseases can benefit following the Mediterranean diet.
Health experts are also presuming that regular intake of Mediterranean food can also prevent the growth of cancerous diseases among individuals. However, one must follow the diet chart thoroughly and should combine different food items, according to their need to get best result.