The Mediterranean Diet has gained fame and much has been written about it since its debut circa 1960. Actually, there is no one Mediterranean diet, the diets of southern France, Italy, Spain, and Greece share several characteristics that make this healthy diet what it is today.
What makes this diet so important for our health? Disease statistics and incidence rates show that countries eating the Mediterranean way for centuries have traditionally been on the good side. These countries have reported statistics that have significantly lower death rates from cardiovascular disease than does the United States. Each of these countries also shows only a fraction of the U.S. rates for breast, prostate, lung and colon cancers. Furthermore, on average, the people of the Mediterranean live about a year longer than U.S. citizens.
What is this diet all about?
Dan Buettner, author of The Blue Zones and The Blue Zones Solution has revealed that the world’s longest living people have lived lifestyles over the past 100 years that help them and others lead healthier and more fulfilling lives.
One of these lifestyles includes their diets. Buettner’s teams have helped thousands of people lose weight and reverse disease by changing the way they live, eat, and connect with each other. Ultimately, these changes can transform your health and help you live longer.
The basis of this diet at a glance:
- Rich in “healthy” fats including olive oil and omega-3 fatty acids.
- Vegetables abound; meat is minor.
- Loads of beneficial herbs.
- Moderate drinking.
- Practice of a slower pace of life with a strong social connection.
FYI: There is a new book by Dan Buettner called The Blue Zones Kitchen: 100 recipes to live to 100. The information is priceless and the photographs are stunning (provided by David McLain and National Geographic).
The debate will continue as to whether vegan diets can furnish all the nutrients we need. The following article discusses seven of them not abundantly found in plants and in some cases not found at all or not well-absorbed. Vegan diets and/or vegetarian diets can be healthy, but if you are considering veganism in any form, please become fully informed on some of the lesser known issues that need to be addressed.