Mediterranean Diet Health Benefits

Mediterranean-Diet-Health-Benefits The Mediterranean diet is built around fresh fruits, vegetables, olive oil, nuts, legumes and whole grains. Health benefits of the Mediterranean diet include reduced blood sugar, improved memory, prevention of heart disease, depression and even cancer.

Studies have shown that people who follow a Mediterranean diet experience these significant health benefits while enjoying a delicious variety of healthy and natural foods.

Benefits of the Mediterranean diet include:

The diet is low in saturated fats. A diet that is high in saturated fat can increase your risk of heart disease, may lead to cancer and can cause a variety of health problems. The Mediterranean diet is very low in saturated fat, less than eight percent of your calories will come from potentially harmful saturated fat. This percentage is significantly lower than the average of those who do not follow a Mediterranean diet.

The Mediterranean diet is plant based. The diet is centered around fresh fruits and vegetables, more fruits and vegetables than any other dietary program or plan. Plant based diets have been shown to reduce weight, lower cholesterol and cardiovascular risks while providing more natural vitamins, minerals and nutrients.

Provides more whole grains and fiber. Whole grains and fiber have been shown to reduce your risk for type 2 diabetes and can help improve blood sugar while lowering the incidence of cancers, including colorectal cancer. Fiber is important for healthy digestion and bowel function and helps prevent constipation. The B vitamins found in whole grains help your body release energy from protein, fat and carbohydrates.

The Mediterranean diet is rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants play a significant role in maintaining the health, growth and repair of tissue, muscles and skin cells. A diet high in antioxidants may be the key to a longer, healthier life.

The Mediterranean diet is low in red meat. This reduction of meat also reduces the amount of “bad cholesterol” in your diet, reducing your risk and the incidence of cardiovascular disease, hypertension and stroke. A reduction of red meat also reduces calories and fat leading to leaner body mass. The Mediterranean diet does include lean meats in moderate portions including fish, seafood and poultry which provide a healthy source of lean protein.

The Mediterranean diet is low in dairy. In fact, if you follow the Mediterranean diet strictly, it includes almost no dairy products at all. If you do include dairy, choose low fat or nonfat versions. Eliminating fatty dairy products will reduce bloating, food allergies and lactose intolerance while promoting an ideal weight. Eliminating dairy products also reduces cholesterol and helps to prevent heart disease.

The Mediterranean diet may prevent diseases. The diet plan reduces your risk for obesity, heart and cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer and hypertension. The outcome of reduced health risks is a longer, healthier life.

Interest in the Mediterranean diet originated with studies of those who actually live long, healthy lives in the Mediterranean region. Once thought to be solely the result of a diet rich in olive oil, the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet are now attributed to the combination of healthy fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and omega-3 fatty acids.

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