The Mediterranean diet

By itself, the Mediterranean diet is not a diet, but a collection of dietary principles and habits around the Mediterranean, which includes up to 16 countries. The basis of the Mediterranean diet are cuisine of Spain, Italy and Greece. Of the cuisine in this area formed the basis of a healthy diet and healthy eating, as it is known will never lead to obesity, on the contrary, its distinctive feature is normal weight and good health.

Products for diet

Traditional cuisine for people from Mediterranean countries is the consumption of large quantities of seasonal fruits and vegetables, greens, legumes, nuts, cereals, whole grains, bread from wheat flour, pasta from grains of durum wheat. The mandatory presence of olive oil in cooking, for frying, for the filling, greasing and pickling.

In respect of beef, veal, lamb, poultry — can be traced to the restraint, but the regularity. Pork is not popular, and it is rare to find in the menu.

As is the Mediterranean diet menu is not complete without fish and seafood, the main suppliers of polyunsaturated fatty acids omega – 3 and omega – 6.

As for dairy products, mostly fermented natural products – yogurt, low-fat yoghurts, soft cheeses with low fat content, e.g. feta, mozzarella. Just milk or dairy food in the diet is rare.

When table is always served red wine of good quality local production, in moderation. Cakes, confectionery, sweets here are not fond of. Preference is given to natural products – nuts, dry-fruits, honey.

The people of this region lead a very active lifestyle, are extremely optimistic, emotional and a little vulnerable to disease. The secret – in many components of the factors, but one of them is healthy eating.

It is interesting to know! The term "Mediterranean diet" was introduced as a concept back in the mid-twentieth century, American nutritionists, couple Case. Based on the studies way of life of the peoples of the Mediterranean, they have organically built the food pyramid, the base of which are carbohydrates – 60%, followed by vegetable fats – 30% proteins complete the structure and make up only 10%.

The rules of the Mediterranean diet

In order to lose weight and get rid of the high risk of Contracting the accompanying overweight disease, Mediterranean diet for weight loss – just what we need! Because this is a lifestyle, not just a temporary measure, when it is necessary to quickly achieve the desired result. As the saying goes, "more haste, less speed".

So, consider the basic rules to be followed, as well as products for the Mediterranean diet:

The Mediterranean diet
  • Every day we must eat a lot of seasonal fruits and vegetables is the basis of all the dishes, but potatoes need to limit to 3 servings per week.
  • Milk products is a natural preparation with a low content of fat. It and yogurt, and yogurt, and soft cheeses, they are included in daily diet.
  • The diet should include seasonal fresh herbs, garlic, onion, spices – Basil, rosemary, thyme, oregano.
  • Olive oil should take pride of place among all the fats. Salads and light meals, preferably, oil from the first pressing. Also use any other unrefined vegetable oils.
  • Seafood fresh lean fish (halibut, salmon, tuna, trout) – products included in the daily diet.
  • White meat – as mentioned above, consumed in moderation, in small portions 4 times a week no more than 100 grams per serving. But red meat is allowed not more than 4 times a month, about once a week. Eggs – no more than one a day.
  • Pasta made only of durum wheat. Beans, raw rice, preferably brown, barley, buckwheat – whole grains.
  • Drink plenty of water — it is the best soft drink 1.5 liters per day.
  • The red wine served with the meal, drink no more than two glasses for women and 3 glasses allowed to have men.
  • Nuts, dried fruits, seeds need to eat not more than 1 time a week.
  • Minimize salt and flavorings from the diet — it is better to use herbs and natural spices.
  • The ban applies to known unwholesome foods – fatty meat, lard, flour sweets, confectionery, candy and ice cream.

As you can see, the diet the Mediterranean diet is very rich, balanced, however, if you decided to lose weight, we recommend the following amounts of food per meal (1 Cup = 237 ml = 16 tablespoons):

  • 1 Cup of fresh vegetables;
  • 1/2 of prepared vegetables for a couple;
  • pasta or cereal — 1/2 Cup;
  • ready beans — 1 Cup
  • dairy products — 1 Cup
  • potatoes — 1 Cup
  • fruit — for 1 time not more than 1 fruit
  • egg — 1 piece per day
  • nuts — 30 g
  • meat and fish — no more than 100 gr of the finished product.

Mode Mediterranean diet is 5 meals (3 basic techniques: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and 2 complimentary snack), when a staple carbohydrate foods in the first half of the day, and protein in the second.

Usually in Mediterranean lands first Breakfast consists of cereal grains with vegetables, the second — milk products, fruit, serving pasta, rice, soups, vegetables, salads, fish or meat is considered the main meal. Snack, dinner – all kinds of vegetable casseroles, cheeses, fruit salads, seafood.

All of these products create so-called pyramid of the Mediterranean diet:


The use of the products

If we consider the benefits of all the products that make up the food pyramid, starting with vegetables and fruits that make up its Foundation — we can talk about that all valuable minerals, vitamins, amino acids supply the body sufficiently.

It is recommended to use seasonal vegetables, fruits, herbs, which are grown and ripen in a natural way, outdoors. Then they only remain valuable bioflavonoids, which are active antioxidants. While antioxidants are known to fight free radicals and slow the aging process.

Minerals such as selenium, manganese, zinc are seafood, vegetables, rice. They also inhibit oxidative processes in the body, this means that the longer it is stored the elasticity of the skin.

I especially want to mention the benefits of olive oil, which is used lavishly in the Mediterranean diet. Oil use extra virgin, unrefined, it retains all the beneficial properties of the olives, their flavor and taste. Monounsaturated fats are in olives, have a very positive influence on the cardiovascular system, reduces bad cholesterol – LDL and prevent the formation of blood clots in the vessels, make vessel walls more durable.

Olive oil can be partially replaced with any vegetable oil, only it is important to choose unrefined, cold-pressed.

Lean meat of veal, beef, lamb provides the body essential and necessary proteins that supports the level of hemoglobin and is involved in hematopoiesis. White meat poultry, rabbit is a highly digestible protein, dietary product with a low content of fat and lack of carbohydrates.

Milk products is full available for the assimilation of calcium, which strengthens bones, makes our hair healthy and teeth strong. Also lactic acid protects the intestine from infections and organic acids contribute to the work of the gastrointestinal tract.

Red wine contains potassium, magnesium, iron, selenium, vitamins b, P, C — it strengthens the heart muscle, improves immunity, fights cancer cells. Therefore, its use in small quantities is extremely useful.

Will discuss pasta and whole grain cereals, as they make up a large part of the diet of inhabitants of the Mediterranean. Are sources of complex carbohydrates, which provide the main energy for our body. If grains are not processed, not polished, and pasta made from flour of durum wheat, then they are the biggest providers of fiber, which ensures regular bowel function and the entire digestive tract in General.

Greek salad

Menu Mediterranean diet for a week

Below shows the menu of the Mediterranean diet for 7 days. Such a menu, you can make yourself, based on the products provided by the diet.

Clicking on the links in the menu you can watch the recipes of dishes mentioned in the menu.

DayMealFoods and dishes for the Mediterranean diet
Day 1BreakfastOatmeal with milk and fruit. A refreshing fruit smoothie
SnackA glass of kefir or natural yoghurt
LunchThe tuna sandwich. Salad of cherry. 1 any fruit of choice
Snack30 g of nuts for your choice
DinnerSalad of avocado, iceberg lettuce, cherry tomatoes and cheese (feta or Mozarella)
Day 2BreakfastFruit salad, as a dressing, you can use yogurt or kefir without sugar.
Snack1 fruit of choice
Lunch Risotto with vegetables. 1 fruit of choice
SnackA sandwich of whole wheat bread with cheese and slice of tomato
Dinner Chicken salad "Summer". 1 slice whole wheat bread
Day 3BreakfastCheese or cottage cheese casserole. A glass of juice
SnackTea with 2 oat cakes
LunchVegetable stew with rice. A few pieces of cheese.
Snack1 fruit of choice
DinnerFish baked in the oven with cheese. Salad vegetables
Day 4BreakfastOmelette of 2 egg whites, whole wheat bread. 1 fruit
Snack1 oats muffin with almonds
LunchPasta with seafood or fish. 1 tomato
Snack30 g of dried fruit your choice
DinnerSimple salad with arugula
Day 5Breakfast1 boiled hard boiled egg, toast with cheese and tomato slices
Snack1 fruit of choice
LunchVegetable soup. Salad of tomatoes and cheese. A glass of juice
Snack1 fruit of choice
DinnerEggplant baked with cheese, tomatoes and mushrooms
Day 6BreakfastFresh berries or fruit with natural yoghurt
Snack1 fruit of choice
LunchVegetable stew with steamed fish.
SnackA glass of juice, a cheese sandwich
DinnerMediterranean pasta salad
Day 7BreakfastCouscous with milk and dried fruits.
Snack1 oats muffin with almonds
LunchChicken fillet baked in the oven. Salad vegetables
SnackFruit of choice or handful of nuts
DinnerBasmati salad. Whole-wheat bread. Juice

The effect of diet on health

Skim products, which form the basis of the diet of the people of the Mediterranean region, you can immediately determine what is a healthy diet and that mass obesity as a phenomenon in this area is completely excluded. Studies were conducted on 1.5 million people has shown that such diseases of overweight such as diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer's disease – among people adhering to the Mediterranean diet, are much rarer.

Such "popular" diagnoses are often placed people, if their food habits dominated by the so-called "American power" – the use of quickly cooked frozen products and semi-finished products, refined grains and oils, animal fats, pastry and confectionery made with white flour, use controlled amounts of sugar. And often people with the "American type" food of the Mediterranean diet prescribed as a diet that will help lose weight and improve health.