The Mediterranean Diet is not a diet to lose weight, but a lifestyle to eat healthy. It does not ban the consumption of certain foods, but instead gives alternate options that are better for the body. It involves eating delicious foods that are balanced, rich in nutrients, and fresh. Although it is slightly expensive and requires some preparation time, the benefits you may gain from eating this way overshadow those factors.
Eating these foods is just one aspect of maintaining wellness. Eating with others and staying physically active (suggested activities are on a fact sheet) are other things you can do to improve your physical, emotional, and social wellness.
At the top right of this page, Figure 1 shows a breakdown of the daily food consumption in a Mediterranean Diet. The bottom tier shows foods that you should eat frequently and in larger volumes, while theMediterranean Diet Food Pyramid top tier includes foods that you should eat sparingly. Here’s a list of the tiers explained starting with the top of the pyramid:
Although not on the pyramid, it is always necessary to drink a lot of water to stay hydrated. To learn more about water, please read a fact sheet. An occasional glass of wine is also allowed, if desired.
(1)(2013). Mediterranean Diet & Pyramid. Retrieved from http://www.oldwayspt.org/resources/heritage-pyramids/mediterranean-diet-pyramid
(2)Scarmeas, N., Luchsinger, J., Schupf N., Brickman, A., & et al (2009). Physical activity, diet and risk of Alzheimer disease. JAMA, 302 (6), 627-637.
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