From the previous chapter, you might‘ve already guessed this diet doesn‘t grip you very tightly when it comes to food. There are plenty of healthy options available for you to try and avail. Especially given the diverse nature of how the diet was formed ov er time. You‘re mostly allowed to eat nearly everything—it all just needs to be used in healthy ways. You basically fine tune your food to make nutritious and healthy meals instead of stopping yourself from eating and enjoying meals.
While we‘re going to dive into getting started in Chapter 4, it‘s important to understand the kinds of food you‘ll be consuming to see the real potential of this,diet.
All that said, there are a few things within certain food types you‘re better forgoing as a whole. Some are puffed up calories, while others damage your body.A Mediterranean diet wouldn‘t be as effective in its efforts to regenerate your health to its optimum levels if these kinds of foods were to be consumed on a frequent basis. Take a moment and browse through to check if you‘re consuming some of these undesirable foods.
Foods to avoid
Fast food – This easily avoidable, harmful, treat has been there for your quick hunger pangs; but it‘s not doing you any favors. Most fast foods are very damaging to your health. Your coffee has too much sugar, your cheese has the wrong kind of fats, and most other things have too much salt to justify consumption. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, two in every three adults are considered to be obese or overweight in the United States. That‘s not a pretty picture—especially given most Americans eat out or consume similar snacks at home nearly five times each week. So, if you want to start improving your health, this is the first thing you want to reduce.
Sweeteners – While a Mediterranean diet provides alternatives when it comes to sweeteners, good ol‘ white sugar and the like should be taken out. From creating a blood sugar imbalance to causing obesity, sugar is the diet enemy number one. It‘s easy to see a small spoon and think nothing of it, but those small spoons can be pretty harmful in the long run as they may
lead to sugar addiction. That said, those who have developed a small sweet tooth doesn‘t worry much.
This lifestyle does provide plenty of treating options—just with healthier sweeteners.
Soft drinks – Some of the same reasons as sugars apply here, but soft drinks are condensed form of sugar with some other harmful ingredients.According to JAMA, fructose-rich beverages can increase the risk of gout in men and women by at least 75%.These three simple, yet highly damaging food types are advisable to cut out. As you can probably see, as long as you consume them, you can‘t heal any previous damage even if you adopt the Mediterranean diet. You‘ll only increase the harm and reduce the effectiveness of this lifestyle—mooting your struggles.
That said, what should you be having in this diet?
When adopting a Mediterranean lifestyle, you can be generous with the amount of veggies you eat. I n fact, it‘s recommended to eat a large amount of vegetables.You can take a bite from avocados, artichokes, celery, onions, lettuce, tomatoes,broccoli, peas, peppers, sweet potatoes and mushrooms.
Likewise, fruits are great sources of nutrients as well. You can have your pick with them. For example, you can eat melons, grapefruits, strawberries, bananas,apples, dates and cherries — to name a few. These can also be used as sweeteners instead of sugar for simple drinks given their natural taste.
Fish and Poultry
A Mediterranean diet shouldn‘t be excessively based on fish. While the Mediterranean zone consisted of a lot of fish-able areas, agricultural farming was the main focus given the benefits it provided. That said, fish is preferable to red meat which should only be consumed in small amounts. Chicken and turkey are excellent substitutes for your meat needs. There aren‘t any particular fish you need to avoid.
Wheat, oats, rice, couscous and barley are perfectly acceptable on this diet. These particular grains contain little to no trans and saturated fat so you‘re basically on a good level with them. That said, look for whole grains instead of refined carbs.
A favorite staple of the Mediterranean diet is nuts, which contains unsaturated fatty acids. They also contain the good kind of fats, namely: Omega 3 fatty acid. Pecans and walnuts should definitely be consumed, but remember that nuts are high in calories. Given their easily consumable nature, it‘s good to stay within an ounce a day or two. Additionally, try to go for unsweetened or unsalted nuts.
Everything from milk to cheese is permitted, but in moderation. That said, opting for low or no fat options instead of full fats is advisable. Nevertheless, such food also needs to be consumed in moderation.
The Mediterranean diet doesn‘t stop you from having any kind of fun. Wine, especially red wine, is permitted within the diet. Usually a glass a day works really well for you. As mentioned you want to avoid any soft drinks and highly sugared fruit juices.
As we‘ve mentioned before, there are a few healthy fats which are beneficial for our consumption. While fatty items, such as butter and margarine, are not consumed daily; olive oil is a staple item within the Mediterranean diet. It‘s often used as a base to prepare food and even a topping to season everything with. Canola oil is something that can be used in place of margarine and vegetable oil as well… Basically anything with unsaturated fatty acids goes!
The food types that was mentioned above are your building blocks. They ‘re the structure your entire lifestyle will be standing over, and they‘re going to be your main sources of food. So undoubtedly, you must be wondering all the benefits these foods provide you, and that‘s exactly what we‘re diving into next chapter.
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