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Mediterranean Diet: More Than Eating Healthy Foods

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In the Western world, people often go on diets with the intention to lose excess weight. Fad diets may help dieters drop pounds initially, but weight is usually gained back later in life or when individuals’ meal plans fall astray from the regimented diet guidelines.

The Mediterranean diet is recognized worldwide as an ideal diet that promotes lifelong health and well-being. Unlike popular Western diets, the Mediterranean diet focuses on which foods can be eaten and how they can be combined and cooked to produce maximum flavor, rather than being solely concerned about which food to avoid and deprive the body of.

According to Oldways, an international non-profit organization that promotes healthy eating, the Mediterranean diet is a “lifestyle” that combines various aspects of life including exercise, food and socializing with family and friends.

Mediterranean Diet Food Groups

Plant-based Food
The majority of meals from the Mediterranean are composed of foods from plant sources such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, legumes, seeds and breads. Oldways says plant food should be incorporated in all meals and come most often from locally grown sources. Compared to processed and packaged food, fresh and locally harvested plant-based food are full of nourishing vitamins and nutrients. When eating starches such as bread and rice, whole grain ones are the healthiest. According to WebMD, unprocessed and natural whole grains contain fibers and nutrients which fight cancers and heart disease. The fiber in fruits, vegetables and whole grains also satisfies the body when it is hungry, making it fuller and more energized for an extended time.

Olive Oil and Healthy Fats
“The focus of the Mediterranean diet isn’t on limiting total fat consumption, but rather to make wise choices about the types of fat you eat,” mayoclinic.com said.

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EmpowHER Guest

The beauty of the Mediterranean diet: eat well and staying healthy and the weight you give.
in this case, a blessing of Allah be offered to the region.

August 25, 2011 - 3:28pm

When I was young my family was raised to eat healthy. My mother always cooked proper meals and we all ate around the table at dinner time after we would pick a fruit to eat,apple or pear. Our meals had veg,potatoe and beef,chicken or pork that is what choice we had,but it was good and healthy. I believe today we all eat to much all the time.I was always active as a kid and I still am today.My mom use to say variety is the spice of life and she always tried others types of food if she thought or heard it was good for our health. I think about her and remember things she said when I cook and or, go for walks because she really did enjoy the finer things in life and it was in moderation. I really enjoy the Mediterranean style of cooking.I am thankul that we do have healthier choices to choose from today and a better understanding.

August 2, 2011 - 2:25pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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