Healthy Diets: Everything About The Mediterranean Diet

Healthy diet and weather are quite similar to each other. Like the weather, the healthy diet definition keeps changing. While it was a low-fat diet yesterday and a high-fat diet today, no one knows what it will be tomorrow.

However, in many people’s opinions, healthy diets do not have to be complicated. You don’t even have to cut “bad” foods out of your diet.

What are healthy diets?

Healthy diets are those that give a well-balanced macro mix of protein, fat, and carbohydrates. Meanwhile, it also limits your intake of “bad” foods. It emphasizes eating fresh and green veggies, fruits, and low-fat dairy products including lean meats, eggs, fish, etc.

A recent study shows that a high-fat Mediterranean diet is what we can consider a healthy diet of the day. Read on to find how Dr. Emily Senay elaborates this study through her CBS’s “The Benefits Of Fat” interview.

What is the Mediterranean Diet?

The Mediterranean is basically following the traditional cuisine that people in Mediterranean nations enjoy. For example, some of these countries you may know are France, Spain, Greece, and Italy.

People who followed this diet were extremely healthy and had a rare chance of developing serious health conditions. According to the researchers, having a food plan based on the Mediterranean diet can avoid a variety of chronic diseases.

Although the diet asks for no particular dietary guidelines, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, seeds, and heart-healthy fats are often encouraged.

A growing body of evidence suggests that the Mediterranean diet can incredibly help people lose weight. Moreover, it can also prevent heart attacks, strokes, type 2 diabetes, and premature death.

As a result, dietitians frequently suggest the Mediterranean diet to those who want to enhance their health. Additionally, since it helps protect from chronic disease, even doctors are emphasizing this diet.

What are the benefits of the Mediterranean diet?

While the Mediterranean diet improves your health quality, it assists you to stay in shape. Here are some of its potential benefits listed below:

It’s good for your heart: A study shows that between a low-fat diet and the Mediterranean diet, the latter was comparatively better for the heart. Basically, it slows down the development of plaque buildup in the arteries, a major cause of heart diseases. Moreover, it helps control blood pressure, lowering the risk of heart attack and strokes.

Maintains a healthy blood sugar level: The foods recommended under this diet are nutrient-dense. Thus, it helps stabilize blood sugar levels and can protect from type-2 diabetes. Additionally, it reduces insulin resistance, enhancing your body’s ability to utilize insulin in order to regulate blood sugar levels effectively.

Keeps the brain healthy: Researchers have found that this type of eating pattern can be really helpful for your brain as well. It helps enhance memory and reduces the risks for Alzheimer’s disease. Following the Mediterranean diet can aid in preventing dementia, other cognitive-related issues, and helps improve focus.

What to include in your diet?

Apart from vegetables, fruits, whole grains, Dr. Emily Senay advises virgin olive oil, walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds but in control. What exactly is the issue?

These foods can be a component of a healthy diet when you consume them in moderation. Hazelnuts and almonds, on the other hand, are high in omega-6 fat. You can do better than that, especially since a normal Western diet is already heavy in omega-6 fatty acids.

The ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in a healthy diet is very significant.

Flaxseed, canola, walnut, olive, and avocado oils have the optimum omega-6 to the omega-3 ratio when it comes to fatty acid makeup.

Omega-6:Omega-3 Ratio in oils:

Flaxseed – 0:24

  • Canola – 2:00
  • Walnut – 5:08
  • Olive – 13:1
  • Avocado – 13:0

Walnuts, macadamia, pecans, cashews, and pine nuts have the best omega-6 to omega-3 ratio among nuts.

Omega-6:Omega-3 Ratio in nuts:

  • Walnuts – 4:2
  • Macadamia – 6:3
  • Pecans – 20:9
  • Pine – 31:6
  • Cashews – 47:6

If you have the option, choose nuts and oils that have a favorable omega-6 to omega-3 ratio.

What to avoid?

You should definitely refrain from eating processed foods when following the Mediterranean diet. Also, refined cereals, processed meals, and added sugar are all a big NO. Here’s a list of food items you should limit if you decide to follow this diet.

  • Added sugar: Many foods have added sugar, but soda, candy, ice cream, table sugar, syrup, and baked products contain the most.
  • Refined oils: Soybean oil, canola oil, cottonseed oil, and grapeseed oil are all examples of such oils.
  • Refined grains: Such as white bread, pasta, tortillas, chips, crackers.
  • Processed meats: Beef jerky, processed sausages, hot dogs, deli meats.
  • Trans fats: Margarine, fried meals, and other processed foods contain trans fats.
  • Highly processed foods: Fast food, convenience meals, microwave popcorn, and granola bars are examples of highly processed foods.

To sum up

Though there is no one-size-fits-all Mediterranean diet, it is generally high in healthful plant foods and low in animal foods, with a focus on fish and shellfish.

It has been linked to a variety of health advantages. This includes helping to regulate blood sugar levels, increase heart health, and improve cognitive function.

The best part is that you may customize the Mediterranean diet to suit your needs. If you don’t care for salmon or sardines but enjoy whole wheat pasta and olive oil, start putting those together. Customize your meal by taking inspiration from the Mediterranean meals and try having fun while you get healthier.

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