Mediterranean Diet originated from the Mediterranean Region with some 21 countries that border the Mediterranean Sea. It is located between Europe, Africa and Asia and is the largest inland sea in the world. Countries include Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Croatia, Greece and the countries of North Africa – they all are called Mediterranean Region.
Because of huge differences between cultures, mentalities and living habits of the population of this countries, Mediterranean diet vary greatly from country to country. Still, there are some eating patters that are same or similar throughout Mediterranean Region. People in this area eat:
Olives and olive oil is the main source of fat and it replaces almost all other oils
Lots of fruits, vegetables and whole grain fresh bread
Lots of cereals, potatoes, rice, beans, nuts
Fewer dairy products and eggs
Little read meat (few times a month)
Red meat is substituted with fish and poultry
Low to moderate amounts of wine
Overall, a typical Mediterranean diet plan consist of legumes and beans, huge variety of fresh vegetables and seasonal fruits, seafood and fish (in some parts of the region), fresh herbs, wine, yogurt and extra virgin olive oil. It is impossible to come up with an exact definition of Mediterranean diet because the population in this region consumes a diverse set of foods. It is interesting to note that Mediterranean diet plan is really an eating pattern followed by people in the Mediterranean region for thousands of years. It consists of around 10% carbohydrates, 10% fats, 20% meats (fish and poultry) and 60% of vegetables. It is not so much a diet, but more a “way of life” with balanced eating habits which lead to healthier life and weight loss.
Large amounts of fruits and vegetables, and moderate amounts of seafood, fish and wine, provide anti-oxidants which even help the anti-aging method. And the fibers from rice, fresh bread, potatoes and pasta (all hugely popular food on the Mediterranean menu) are natural fillers which after a meal give a nice sense of fulfillment and prevent a person from periodically reaching for snacks. Mediterranean style diet is all about select foods that satisfy your hunger, supply your body with energy and provide important nutrients, which make it a perfect diet plan for healthier life and weight loss.
If your goals are to lose weight and maintain the new weight, to improve your longevity and to eat healthier, you should consider switching to Mediterranean diet menu.
Alessia Rossi is a nutritionist, passionate about Mediterranean food, diet and culture. Join the thousands of happy people who’ve been able to lose extra weight and eat healthier by following Mediterranean Diet Plan.