Updated: Apr 15, 2019
It has been clear for decades that the Mediterranean Diet and Lifestyle offers one of the healthiest eating patterns and ways of living, in the world.
Key components of the Mediterranean Lifestyle characterizes the traditions and dietary patterns of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. Here individuals are recognized to have one of the longest life expectancies and lowest incidence of heart disease in the world.
This pattern focus' on eating whole foods, eating locally, limiting processed / prepackaged foods and emphasizes the importance of exercise and social connections.
THE CORE OF THE DIET
Eating primarily a plant based diet. Basing each meal around fruits and vegetables, whole grains, dried beans and other legumes (chickpeas, lentils), nuts/seeds, herbs and spices. Choosing healthy plant based fats like those found in extra virgin olive oil, nuts/seeds, avocados and fish.
Choosing fish (at least 2 times per week), seafood, poultry and legumes more often than red meat. Eating fatty fish including seafood a few times per week, as well as poultry. Limiting red meat and when having it, choosing lean meats, in small portions, usually cut up into small pieces and mixed with plant based foods as the main entree.
Enjoying a small amount of yogurt and other dairy products daily. Occasionally eating your favourite full fat cheese, but in small portions.
Sweets as a celebration or a treat. Including fruit as the foundation of the dessert.
Drinking red wine in moderation (optional). Taken with a meal to obtain the combined effect of the polyphenol (antioxidant) benefit of the red wine when mixed with the food.
Daily physical activity, participating in other activities that bring you joy, connecting with people and sharing meals with family and friends