Aren’t you sick and tired of being sick and tired?
Let’s face it, we ARE what we eat!
Eating fast food, junk, and processed foods, causes us to feel sluggish, unmotivated, and guilty.
In the United States, every minute, someone is dying of heart disease – over 600,000 deaths’ per year!
Cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death. Obesity and diabetes are more prevalent in children than every before.
Scientific evidence from all corners conclude, eating a healthy, vegetable based diet, with limited red meat, can immediately impact your physical and mental well-being.
The Mediterranean diet blends the basics of healthy eating with the traditional flavors and cooking methods of the Mediterranean.
Why the Mediterranean?
Interest in the Mediterranean diet began in the 1960s with the observation that coronary heart disease caused fewer deaths in Mediterranean countries, such as Greece and Italy, than in the U.S. and northern Europe.
Subsequent studies found that the Mediterranean diet is associated with reduced risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
The Mediterranean diet is one of the healthy eating plans recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans to promote health and prevent chronic disease.
It is also recognized by the World Health Organization as a healthy and sustainable dietary pattern and as an intangible cultural asset by the United National Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
Mediterranean Diet Concept
The main components of Mediterranean diet include:
- Daily consumption of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and healthy fats
- Weekly intake of fish, poultry, beans and eggs
- Moderate portions of dairy products
- Limited intake of red meat
Notice it is not the complete elimination of red meat…just a limited amount.
The foundation of the Mediterranean diet is vegetables, fruits, herbs, nuts, beans and whole grains.
Meals are built around these plant-based foods, however, this is NOT a diet of ONLY vegetables.
For example, leafy vegetables are an important part of this lifestyle, but they are a very poor calorie, i.e. energy source.
We would need to eat almost 16 pounds of cooked leafy greens to get 2,000 calories of food!
It is nearly impossible to get enough calories from leafy vegetables alone to form a sustainable diet.
Not eating enough calories leads to you feeling hungry and forming uncontrollable cravings, which results in low energy, and feelings of deprivation.
Do Not Focus on the Meat
In America, we are accustom to building our meals around a meat.
In the Mediterranean diet, the center of the meal is a starch-based “comfort food,” such as tubers like potatoes and sweet potatoes; starchy vegetables like corn and peas; whole grains like brown rice, millet, quinoa, and buckwheat; and legumes like chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans, and lima beans.
In addition to these starch-based foods, you can eat as much whole fruit as you like.
Healthy fats are a mainstay of the Mediterranean diet.
Learn how to embrace healthy fats by clicking here.
Research shows a mediocre adherence to a Mediterranean diet:
- Had a 15% reduction in the risk of having a heart attack
- A 23% lower risk of dying during hospitalization
- A 19% lower likelihood of having another cardiac event during the first 30 days after hospitalization for an initial cardiac event
Make a list of vegetables you like and eat them!
- Eat: Vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, potatoes, whole grains, breads, herbs, spices, fish, seafood and extra virgin olive oil.
- Eat in moderation: Poultry, eggs, cheese and yogurt.
- Eat only rarely: Red meat.
- Don’t eat: Sugar-sweetened beverages, added sugars, processed meat, refined grains, refined oils and other highly processed foods.
- Added sugar: Soda, candies, ice cream, table sugar and many others.
- Refined grains: White bread, pasta made with refined wheat, etc.
- Trans fats: Found in margarine and various processed foods.
- Refined oils: Soybean oil, canola oil, cottonseed oil and others.
- Processed meat: Processed sausages, hot dogs, etc.
- Highly processed foods: Anything labeled “low-fat” or “diet” or which looks like it was made in a factory.
Water should be your go-to beverage on a Mediterranean diet.
Coffee and tea are also completely acceptable, but avoid sugar-sweetened beverages and fruit juices, which are very high in sugar.
Here is a wonderful, printable guide to eating a Mediterranean diet.
Books about the Mediterranean Diet or a Whole-Food, Plant Based Lifestyle
Herb Crusted Salmon
- 1 lb Salmon divided into 4 equal parts
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1/8 tsp salt sprinkled over fish for seasoning
- 1/8 tsp salt for breadcrumb mixture
- 1/8 tsp fresh black pepper
- 1/4 cup Mixed fresh herbs including tarragon, chives, parsley, cilantro, If you do not have fresh herbs, use a 1/2 Tablespoon of each dried herb
- 1 cup whole wheat crackers mashed made into crumbs, I usually place mine in a zip lock bag and mash with a meat tenderizer
- 2 eggs beaten well
- 1/2 lemon cut into wedges
- Preheat oven to 425º
- Season salmon with oil, 1/8 teaspoon of the salt and the pepper
- Place salmon on a sheet tray and top with the fresh herbs
- In a bowl, combine the eggs, cracker crumbs, the remaining salt and a dash of pepper.
- Place the cracker mixture on top of the herbs and press into the fish to make a crust.
- Place sheet tray into oven and bake until there is just a small bit of pink in the middle of the salmon, which should be about 5 minutes
- Put oven on broil and cook an additional 2 minutes to brown the crust. Make sure to watch the fish, so as not to burn it.
- Serve with the lemon wedges.