A Mediterranean diet includes the customary healthy living habits of the people who are from the countries who share the border with the Mediterranean Sea, France, Italy, Spain, and Greece. Now, we know from where the Mediterranean diet originated so, let’s have a look at what is a Mediterranean diet?
This diet is inspired by the diet People living in Greece and Italy in the 1960s. This diet mostly consists of legumes, olive oil, fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, grains, fish and unrefined cereals. Moreover, this diet normally consists of a low intake of meat and dairy foods.
Mediterranean diet is linked with a healthier heart and good overall health of the human body. One great thing about the Mediterranean diet that most people love is the allowance of consuming moderate amounts of red wine.
How can you make your diet more Mediterranean?
If you are looking to adopt the Mediterranean diet in your lifestyle then all you have to do is follow a few simple rules. By following these simple and effective rules, you can make your diet more Mediterranean.
- Consuming lesser amounts of meat.
- Including fish in your diet plan.
- Eating plenty of all kinds of fruits and vegetables.
- Choosing products that are prepared from plant and vegetable oils, such as olive oil.
- Adding starchy foods in your diets such as bread, rice, potatoes and pasta.
What are the potential and known health benefits of the Mediterranean Diet?
The Mediterranean diet is one of the best diets because it is great for heart health. It decreases the risk of stroke. It decreases the bad (LDL) cholesterol in the human body. It also reduces the mortality from cardiovascular diseases. Moreover, this diet has also been accredited to reduce certain cancers like Breast Cancer, as well as other medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
Also, this diet is beneficial for people who have a type – 2 Diabetes. Mediterranean diet improves blood sugar control in type – Diabetes patients. This shows that this diet can be very helpful to manage this disease.
Those who are type – 2 Diabetic also have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, this diet is excellent for type – 2 Diabetic patients because it improves heart health.
The general guidelines of the diet recommend that people eat:
- Vast variety of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.
- Wholesome fats, such as nuts, seeds, and olive oil
- Reasonable quantity of dairy and fish.
- Very little white meat and red meat
- A few eggs
- Red wine but in moderation.
- Now that we know what is a Mediterranean diet? Its benefits and guidelines. Therefore, now we will have a look at the 7 – Day meal plan.
7-day meal plan:
Here is an example of a 7 – day Mediterranean diet meal plan:
Day – 1
- One egg, pan-fried.
- Whole-wheat toast.
- Grilled tomatoes.
- For additional calories, you can add an extra egg or some sliced avocado to the toast.
- Two cups of mixed salad greens with cherry tomatoes, olives on top, a dressing of olive oil and vinegar.
- Whole-grain pita bread.
- 2 ounces (oz) of hummus.
- Whole-grain pizza with grilled vegetables and tomato sauce.
- For added calories, add some shredded chicken, tuna, ham, or pine nuts to the pizza.
Day – 2
- One cup of Greek yogurt.
- Half a cup of healthy and fresh fruits such as blueberries, raspberries or chopped nectarines.
- For added calories, include 1–2 Oz of almonds or walnuts.
- Whole-grain sandwich with grilled vegetables such as eggplant, bell pepper, zucchini, and onion.
- To raise the calorie content, spread hummus or avocado on the bread before putting in the fillings.
- One portion of baked cod or salmon with garlic and black pepper to add exquisite flavor.
- One roasted potato with chives and olive oil.
Day – 3
- One cup of whole-grain oats with cinnamon, dates, and honey
- Do the topping with low-sugar fruits, such as raspberries.
- One oz of shredded almonds.
- Boiled white beans with spices such as garlic, laurel, and cumin.
- One cup of arugula with toppings of tomato, cucumber, feta cheese, and olive oil dressing.
- Half of a cup of whole-grain pasta with olive oil, tomato sauce, and grilled vegetables.
- 1 tbsp. or 3 tsp. of Parmesan cheese.
Day – 4
- Two egg scramble with onions, bell peppers, and tomatoes
- Do the topping with 1 oz of queso fresco or one-quarter of an avocado.
- Roasted anchovies in olive oil on whole-grain toast and a sprinkling of lemon juice.
- A warm salad containing 2 cups of steamed kale and tomatoes.
- Two cups of steamed spinach with a sprinkling of lemon juice and herbs.
- One boiled artichoke with garlic powder, olive oil, and salt.
- Add extra artichoke for a healthful, satisfying meal.
Day – 5
- One cup of Greek yogurt with cinnamon and honey on top
- Mix in a cut apple and shredded almonds.
- One cup of quinoa with bell peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, and olives as well as roasted garbanzo beans with thyme and oregano.
- Top with feta cheese crumbles or avocado.
- Two cups of steamed kale with tomato, cucumber, olives, lemon juice, and Parmesan cheese.
- A small quantity of grilled sardines along with a slice of lemon.
Day – 6
- Two slices of whole-grain toast with smooth cheese, such as queso fresco, ricotta, or goat cheese.
- Add diced blueberries or figs for sweetness.
- Two cups of mixed greens with tomato and cucumber.
- A small quantity of the roasted chicken along with a sprinkling of olive oil and lemon juice.
- Oven-roasted vegetables, such as:
- Sweet potato
- Add olive oil and herbs before roasting.
- One cup of whole-grain couscous.
Day – 7
- Whole-grain oats along with dates, cinnamon, and maple syrup.
- Do the topping with low-sugar fruits, such as raspberries or blackberries.
- Take stewed zucchini, onion, yellow squash, and potato in a tomato and herb sauce.
- Take two cups of greens, such as arugula or spinach, with tomato, olives, and olive oil.
- And a small portion of white fish.
- Leftover vegetable stew from lunch.
Health benefits of the mediterranean Diet:
- Lower risk of cardiovascular diseases
- Improved sleep quality
- Weight loss
The Mediterranean food is abundant in lean proteins, like fish, chicken and legumes; fresh vegetables and fruits; whole, organic grains; seeds and nuts; healthy fats like olive oil; and limited consumption of dairy and red meats. It is great for heart health, improves sleep quality and supports weight loss.