Why so many doctors and people recommend the Mediterranean diet nowadays? is it too good to be true or it actually works? here is the answer to all of your questions: what is a Mediterranean diet, how to start it, a guide through the process and an awesome FREE meal plan e-book for you.
Why is it called a Mediterranean diet?
Back in the days, say about 1960s, people from Mediterranean region which includes countries like Italy and Greece, used to eat in a certain diet which contains the food ingredients that they had in hand. so actually following a Mediterranean diet means to eat like Greek or Italian used to eat ( or still eat? ).
What is a Mediterranean diet in simple words?
The traditional Mediterranean diet included a generous portion of fresh produce, whole grains, and legumes, as well as some healthful fats and fish.
But i’ts good to remember that since this was more a habit of eating in a certain region, it’s called a diet. so there is no written rule about it. Mediterranean diet is way better than any other restricted diet since you are allowed to eat a lot of different foods, without having a forbidden list, such as in vegan or keto diet.
to simplify, this is a list of ingredients that people mostly eat in this diet:
- a wide range of fresh vegetables, fruits, and whole grains
- healthy fats, like as nuts, seeds, and olive oil
- moderate amounts of dairy and fish
- a little white meat and red meat
- few eggs
- red wine in moderation
as you see, there is almost everything included in this diet but the portions are slightly different. the emphasise is on the healthy fats such as Omega-3, fish and olive oil, along with fresh produced vegetables and fruits. the main point of this diet is to increase the carbs and focus on the good fats and proteins, but not fully restriced like keto to put the body on a certain phase such as ketosis.
Why is the Mediterranean diet recommened so much?
In the early 20th century when hearth disease was overcoming the humans health, it was observed that a specific region has dramatically a lower rate of heart disease and higher general health, specially compared to American countries. they also had a longer living rate, didn’t suffer from obesity.
As studies began to find an answer, it was revealed that this being in such a different condition is as a result of their diet, which later was called a mediterranean diet as well.
While nowadays many people follow this diet for it’s weight loss properties, there is more that comes along. Mediterranean diet followers lost more weight, live longer and healthier, their total cholestrol and LDL level is lower and they have a higher antioxidant consumption too.
What to eat on a Mediterranean diet:
As mentioned before, there is not a list of specific food to follow on this diet. you are free to choose any food that is recommended on that group as a moderate amount.
Although the first group is introduced as eating mostly healthy plant based foods, but it is important to have at least animal based proteins such as sea foods or any low in calorie meat.
Therefore, if you went to a restaurant, it’s easier to follow your diet. try to choose from the sea based foods or ask to add extra virgin olive oil for you. also, skip on the butter and use whole grain breads instead of white bread.
Don’t for get that along with having a healthy diet, it is also suggested to have a regular, not so heavy, physical activity. the Mediterranean diet is all about having a healthy lifestyle, so don’t forget to enjoy your life as it is!
These are some of the foods that are considered in this diet:
- Vegetables: Tomatoes, broccoli, kale, spinach, onions, cauliflower, carrots, Brussels sprouts, cucumbers, etc.
- Fruits: Apples, bananas, oranges, pears, strawberries, grapes, dates, figs, melons, peaches, etc.
- Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc.
- Legumes: Beans, peas, lentils, pulses, peanuts, chickpeas, etc.
- Tubers: Potatoes, sweet potatoes, turnips, yams, etc.
- Whole grains: Whole oats, brown rice, rye, barley, corn, buckwheat, whole wheat, whole-grain bread and pasta.
- Fish and seafood: Salmon, sardines, trout, tuna, mackerel, shrimp, oysters, clams, crab, mussels, etc.
- Poultry: Chicken, duck, turkey, etc.
- Eggs: Chicken, quail and duck eggs.
- Dairy: Cheese, yogurt, Greek yogurt, etc.
- Herbs and spices: Garlic, basil, mint, rosemary, sage, nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper, etc.
- Healthy Fats: Extra virgin olive oil, olives, avocados and avocado oil.
Whole, single-ingredient and fresh foods are the key to this diet, which leads tho a good health.
Drinks on a Mediterranean diet:
It is very important to drink enough water in this diet. try to carry a water bottle with you all the time. drinking water not only helps to detox your body, but being hydrated is good for your health and it also assists to control the hunger.
Wine is listed on this diet, but try to be moderate and do not exceed more than 1 glass per day. if you don’t drink alcohols, you can simply skip this.
Herbal or black tea and coffee are also allowed while they are sugar free. avoid any artificial sweeteners, store bought fruit juice or carbonated and energy drinks that are high in sugar.
Snacks on a Mediterranean diet
The 3 meals per day is considered in this diet, although you can always snack in a moderate level.
Try drinking water or tea instead of eating an actual snack. but if you really need one, here is a list of some examples to choose from:
- A handful of nuts.
- A piece of fruit.
- Carrots or baby carrots.
- Some berries or grapes.
- Greek yogurt, plain or with fruits ( no sweetener)
- Apple slices with almond butter.
- Peanut butter with banana
Foods to avoid
You have to avoid these groups of foods or ingredients:
- Artificial sugars: Soda, candies, ice cream, table sugar and many others.
- Refined grains: White bread, pasta made with refined wheat, etc.
- Trans fats: Found in margarine and various processed foods.
- Refined oils: Soybean oil, canola oil, cottonseed oil and others.
- Processed meat: Processed sausages, hot dogs, etc.
- Highly processed foods: Anything labeled “low-fat” or “diet” or which looks like it was made in a factory.
- Carbonated drinks: Things like sodas and artificial fruit juices or energy drinks.
Therefore, you have to always care about what your food consists of. always pay attention to the labels of what you eat. that’s why meal preping is a better choice for this diet. But don’t know what to make? do you need some recipes that are specific for Mediterranean diet? Don’t worry!
Continue reading to receive an amazing FREE e-book, which includes +21 amazing Mediterranean recipes , snacks and more importantly all of the nutritional information is included too!
A sample of shopping list in a Mediterranean diet
It is best to shop for yourself, then you know what you are picking. try to do the shopping more frequent and less in amount so you always have fresh ingredients.
keep your eye on the whole grain baked goods, law calorie proteins and organic fresh fruits or veggies. Do not even go near to the artificial sweets to be tempted! i’ts better to clear all of your junk food after shopping, therefore you only have healthy foods to choose from.
Also shopping will motivate you to cook more, so you know what you are eating and the portion control is easier too. now checkout this sample list of the needed ingredients for a Mediterranean diet:
- Vegetables: Carrots, onions, broccoli, spinach, kale, garlic, etc.
- Fruits: Apples, bananas, oranges, grapes, etc.
- Berries: Strawberries, blueberries, etc.
- Frozen veggies: Choose mixes with healthy vegetables.
- Grains: Whole-grain bread, whole-grain pasta, etc.
- Legumes: Lentils, pulses, beans, etc.
- Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, cashews, etc.
- Seeds: Sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc.
- Condiments: Sea salt, pepper, turmeric, cinnamon, etc.
- Fish: Salmon, sardines, mackerel, trout.
- Shrimp and shellfish.
- Potatoes and sweet potatoes.
- Greek yogurt.
- Pastured or omega-3 enriched eggs.
- Extra virgin olive oil ( Highly recommend)
Ready to start?
Here is a FREE meal prep e book!
This is a free e book for 7 days meal prep and includes more than 21 amazing tasty recipes!
this book will help you to start your journey into the amazing Mediterranean diet, without being worried about what to prepare!
in this book, i have combined 21 amazing recipes along with snacks for each day.
All of the nutritional information and calories are included too!
Click here to download the
FREE e-book now!
This e-book is a great beginners guide that even includes the shopping list for your meal prep!
Most of the recipes are vegetable based, along with healthy fats such as olive oil and sea foods or other low fat proteins.
You don’t need special equipment or a lot of time and knowledge to prepare these foods, because they are all simple yet so delicious and healthy. being committed to a diet is always hard, but sure it is easier if you have a plan. therefore i have written this free e-book for your ease to start your amazing healthy lifestyle.
You can follow these recipes for a week and if you enjoyed the meal plans, just customize them with other similar ingredients to move on.
The bottom line
By following the Mediterranean diet for a long period, you will achieve a healthy lifestyle and sustainable diet which is filled with benefits for your life. this diet is not that restrict and you can treat yourself for a small snack or sweet at least once in a week.
By continuing this diet, you will see the long-term changes in your body, and yet you will lose weigh due to the low carb-high protein diet.
At the end, you won’t be disappointed or seeing any disadvantages after trying this diet.
have more questions about this diet or recipes? please leave a comment bellow!
thank you for reading.