Yeah, well okay – I hate the word “diet”.
So let’s call it Mediterranean Style Eating Plan Month. Yup – don’t ya that sounds much better. 🙂
Anyway, have you heard of it? Do you know what it is? It’s based on the way of eating in the countries that surround the Mediterranean Sea. There’s no single meal plan. Think about it – there are many countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea so the Italians eat different than the Greeks then the French. But they all share the same basic principles. Are you intrigued?
I have to say despite the word “diet”, I’m a big fan. Why? Because it’s a lifestyle approach to easy, healthy eating. Ahhh, that’s right up my alley. Okay, so let’s get down to the nitty gritty – what do you eat?
Here are the basics:
- Eat lots of fruit and veggies (yes!). Focus of seasonal produce, replace sweets with fruit.
- Use healthy fats. Think olive oil, nuts, olives, avocados.
- Eat seafood twice a week. Seafood includes fin fish and shell fish.
- Enjoy dairy products. Think Greek yogurt and small amounts of cheese.
- Eat more whole grains. Mediterranean grains include farro, bulgur, and barley. Products made with whole wheat flour.
- Try a meatless meal one time a week. Build your meal around legumes.
- Eat less red meat. Choose smaller portions or cut down to a couple times a month.
This way of eating also emphasizes taking time to enjoy meals with others – friends and family. And, you know – giving yourself permission to enjoy food. And drink lots of water. And – oh wait. You know what else? Wine. Wine, wine, wine! Of course this is optional, but moderate amounts of red wine is not frowned upon. So can you blame me for being a fan of this eating plan?! 🙂
Okay, more importantly, research indicates this type of eating plan can decrease your risk for heart disease. Other studies indicate it can reduce your risk of breast cancer, help with weight management and decrease your risk of diabetes.
So this isn’t another “diet”, it’s a healthy lifestyle. It’s about making simple changes that can positively impact your life. Not to mention getting back to basics and discovering delicious flavors and fresh foods.
Do you follow a Mediterranean Style Eating Plan?
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