5 Health Benefits of the Mediterranean Diet
BY BRYNN MCDOWELL
While traveling with my family the past few years, I absolutely fell in love with the Mediterranean lifestyle. The food, people and culture are captivating. It wasn’t until I started researching this way of life that I learned so much more about the health benefits associated with a Mediterranean-inspired diet and way of life. The Mediterranean Diet is a heart healthy diet based on the recipes and cooking styles of the countries that border the Mediterranean Sea. People living in the Mediterranean region are thought to be some of the healthiest people in the world, based in part on their low presence of certain chronic diseases. If you’ve ever been curious about the benefits of The Mediterranean Diet, keep reading to find out why it’s been named one of the top ways of eating for the last 10 years!
The Mediterranean Diet is an age-old style of eating that focuses on including fresh, healthy ingredients into your meals, moving your body everyday & learning to celebrate good food again.
1. Reduced Risk of Heart Disease – Research continues to show that incorporating more fresh fruits & vegetables and heart healthy fats into meals leads to a decreased risk of heart disease. So it’s no surprise that the Mediterranean Diet is high on the list of ways to decrease your heart disease risk.
2. Decreased Risk for Type 2 Diabetes – One principal of the Mediterranean Diet is to focus on limiting the amount of added sugars, while increasing vegetables and other high fiber foods and incorporating daily physical activity. This has led to better blood sugar control in those with diabetes and a reduced risk overall for developing Type 2 Diabetes.
3. Reduced Risk of Certain Cancers – There are so many cancer fighting antioxidants in fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices that it’s easy to see why following a diet that emphasizes fresh fruits, lots of vegetables, and recipes flavored with fresh herbs & spices from around the world can help reduce the risk for certain cancers.
One of my favorite parts about the Mediterranean Diet is learning to celebrate food again and experimenting with different flavors and fresh ingredients.
4. Possible Reduced Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease – According to the Mayo Clinic, research suggests that following a Mediterranean diet may slow cognitive decline in older adults and reduce the risk of progression into Alzheimer’s disease. More research is needed to determine the exact parts of the mediterranean diet are responsible but it’s great news!
5. Bringing Back to Joy of Eating – not only does the Mediterranean Diet focus on what you eat, but just as important is why you eat. Eating is a social celebration for many living in the Mediterranean region. Food is celebrated and enjoyed with family and friends. One of my favorite parts about the Mediterranean Diet is learning to celebrate food again and experimenting with different flavors and fresh ingredients.
The Mediterranean Diet is an age-old style of eating that focuses on including fresh, healthy ingredients into your meals, moving your body everyday, and learning to celebrate good food again. It’s a lifestyle that focuses on living a healthy life across your whole lifespan, not a quick fix. Incorporating fresh fruits and vegetables, omega 3 rich fish, and heart healthy nuts, seeds, legumes are the guiding principles but the lifestyle itself is so much more!
If you are interested in learning more about The Mediterranean Diet or finding great tasting mediterranean-inspired recipes, head over to The Domestic Dietitian.
How To Make A Simple and Delicious Frittata
By Brynn McDowell
Frittatas are one of my secret weapons in the kitchen. They are pretty simple to make and hearty enough to enjoy for breakfast, lunch or dinner. As an added bonus, they are made almost entirely in the oven. Which means they are the perfect meal to prepare for brunch or get togethers because you don’t have to stand over the stove and ignore your guests. A Frittata is an Italian dish that is similar to an omelet and crustless quiche. One of my favorite recipes is this Spinach & Mushroom Frittata topped with Roasted Tomatoes.