When it comes to a healthy way of eating, good old American know-how is not always what it’s cracked up to be. In fact, many people from western countries can learn a lot from those in Mediterranean regions, whose culture has embraced a healthy lifestyle for centuries.
Epidemiological studies have found that the rate of certain chronic diseases is lower in some Mediterranean areas than in western countries. Using the information gathered about the traditional diets in countries such as Greece and (southern) Italy, public health officials have been able to construct the basic characteristics of a healthy diet known as the Mediterranean diet.
What is the Mediterranean diet all about? Simply put, it is a balanced way of eating that is based on fruits, vegetables, fish, grains, and legumes and uses olive oil as the primary source of fat. Because the diet is rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants, it may help protect against various diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, and colon disease. The diet is high in dietary fiber, which helps make it satisfying and helpful for people who are trying to improve their weight management.
The Mediterranean diet is not a weight loss diet per se; it is a healthy way of eating that may help you prevent some chronic diseases. If you are looking for a healthy way to lose weight, however, following the Mediterranean diet, along with watching the number of calories and the amount of fat that you eat, is a great way to do it.