While it is popular to eat Mediterranean cuisine for dine-in or takeout, some Americans make it the basis for their entire diet. The burning question is: does it work? According to one study documented in the British Medical Journal, the answer is yes! After surveying the diets of 23,000 adults in Greece, nutritional habits, which centered on vegetables, fruits, nuts, and legumes, were proven to help the aging process.
Does a heart good.
Through the study of the people followed throughout the regions in Greece, the Mediterranean Diet gained its notoriety for its benefit of decreasing the risk of heart disease by lowering bad cholesterol levels and thus reducing people dying from cardiovascular conditions.
Shown to lower other disease risks
This nutrient-rich diet has been shown to have many other health benefits. Through the many studies done, health professionals have noted decreased risks and possible prevention of certain cancers. A study found that it could decrease the onset of Participant's Parkinson’s disease, and lower risks of diabetes.
Good brain food too
A related study also found that the Mediterranean diet reduced one’s risk of developing dementia or having the condition worsen. In fact, this study found that those, who ate a diet most similar to the Mediterranean diet, had a 28 percent lower risk of developing cognitive impairment. Among those, who already exhibit signs of dementia, those following this diet had a 48 percent lower risk of getting advanced Alzheimer's disease.
How does the Mediterranean Diet work
It is no secret that the Mediterranean diet could be the key to increased health and longevity. But, how does an American adopt the diet in a world full of fast, fried food? First, you must learn to limit certain foods, like dairy, eggs, and poultry. Processed meats, refined grain, refined oils, and sugar should be avoided as well as any other highly processed foods.
Next comes the fun part: filling your fridge with the main pillars of the Mediterranean diet! Despite the fact that it has a “diet” in its name, it isn’t a diet. It is a lifestyle. People in Greece have eaten this way for centuries—not to lose weight, but as their way of life. It is filled with a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, legumes, potatoes, nuts, seeds, whole grains, fish, seafood, olive oil, and an array of herbs and spices to tantalize your taste buds. For all the benefits, it might be worth giving up the French fries.
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