The Mediterranean diet is easy to find in the grocery store, it contains nutrients known to help enhance longevity and has other health benefits backed by peer-reviewed, scientific studies. Furthermore, even if it's known as the "Mediterranean diet", it's not really a diet. It doesn't tell you what to eat and what not to eat. It's a lifestyle that encourages the consumption of all food groups but gives more emphasis to those which have the most benefits.
Focus More On Plants
Meaning, an emphasis on plants: fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds. Eating a lot of veggies and using all kinds of colours to get the wide array of nutrients, phytochemicals and fibre. Cook, roast or garnish them with herbs and a hint of extra virgin olive oil.
Plus, stay away from either coconut and/or palm oil. Even though both these are plant-based, those oils are high in saturated fats that will increase bad cholesterol. Furthermore, add whole grains and fruit to every meal, but use nuts and seeds as a garnish or small snack due to their high calorie and fat content.
On a Mediterranean diet, fish and other kinds of seafood are consumed at least twice weekly. Cheese and yogurt show up daily up to weekly, in moderate portions of course; chicken and eggs are okay occasionally; however, the use of other meats and sweets are limited.
A diet in which meat is as rare as sweets? For anyone who's reading about Mediterranean diet tips online who may think a meal is centred around a portion of red meat, pork or chicken and the thought of a plant-based diet can seem a bit too daunting to say the least.
It's Not About the Calories
Rather than just tracking macros and calories, or even eliminating food groups, the Mediterranean diet concentrates on consuming whole foods over processed and making plants and healthy fats a priority.
A Mediterranean diet-compliant grocery list usually includes fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, whole grains, extra virgin olive oil, fish, herbs and spices, and a moderate amount of fermented dairy, chicken and eggs. This combination of foods possesses high levels of antioxidants, fibre and omega-3 levels that have been linked to a myriad of health benefits.
Finally, the diet shuts out the usual Western foods such as butter, red meat and baked goods while heavily emphasizing on staying physically active and enjoying meals with other people.
You Can Drink a Glass of Wine
Indulging in a glass of wine is one of the Mediterranean diet's many benefits, but it's definitely not a requirement, to say the least. However, if you do decide to drink a glass, make sure that you drink it in moderation (no more than one 5-ounce glass for women and two glasses for men).
Red wine is known to be high in resveratrol -- which is studied for its potential role in boosting heart health, protecting you from certain cancers and other health benefits.
Choosing Full-Fat Dairy
Due to non- and low-fat dairy options to have the tendency to contain added sugars in order to provide the same feeling inside your mouth as full-fat counterparts, it's best that you choose full-fat products. Experts recommend that you should limit dairy to a couple of times per week and choosing plain, full-fat options that contain gut-friendly probiotics.
So, there we have it, these are just some of the tips and a bit of the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. Just remember to take in your portions right and don't go flooding your plates with all of these healthy stuff at once. Just take it slow and remember to enjoy your meals as well.
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