The Mediterranean Diet is a heart healthy diet based off of a typical way of eating in the region surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. Countries like Spain, France, Italy, Greece, and Turkey all practice the general principles of this diet. The Mediterranean region boasts lower rates of heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s and diabetes as well as a longer life span.
The Mediterranean Diet has 10 simple steps to follow to be successful.
- Fruits & Vegetables: eat a wide variety of color and fill half of your plate with them. Consider drizzling your vegetables with olive oil.
- Whole Grains
- Olive oil is the primary source of fat. Also consider nuts, olives, and avocados.
- Dairy products consisting of a variety of cheeses and Greek yogurt.
- Fish and poultry in moderate amounts: have smaller amounts of meat (3 oz) and increase your intake of fish, especially heart healthy omega 3 fatty acid fish such as salmon & tuna.
- 4 whole eggs per week at most.
- Red meats in low to moderate amounts.
- Wine & water are the typical beverages. If you drink, do so in moderation.
- Maintain a well balanced lifestyle. The Mediterranean Diet emphasizes eating with friends and family and enjoying the pleasures of the table.
- Participate in an active lifestyle, looking for new and creative ways to be active. Exercise and move daily.