The Mediterranean diet is probably the most famous and tasty diet in the world. Or better to say – it’s a style of eating, living, perception of life. Its essence is in the famous Italian expression ‘dolce vita’ – sweet life. The sea, the sun, bright fresh products … This diet is a result of historical tradition, centuries of culinary practice, recent evidence-based researches as one the healthiest eating plan to stay energetic. Moreover, it has a great positive impact on human brain and prevents from early aging (dementia or Alzheimer).
Its influence on health has been comprehensively studied in 2015, with the following convincing outcomes – it supports the fit and young condition of the brain 5 years longer in average. Not so long ago this diet was included in the UNESCO Heritage list of intangible objects – as it effective fights against overweight and cardiovascular diseases – and as a result prolongs lives. In more detail, it is effective in prevention and treatment of such health problems:
- metabolic disorder, overweight
- atherosclerosis, angina pectoris, arrhythmia, myocardial infarction
- high blood pressure, stroke
- some oncological diseases
- depression, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease
Long-livers follow this type of eating, it gives a high quality of life till an old age, and what is important a feeling of a life satisfaction. The Mediterranean continues to be one of the most effective recipes for health and longevity. Let’s have a bit closer look why is so.
Mediterranean diet: what is the essence?
This is a food system, which is the result of a mutual influence of a unique climate, a unique food culture and a unique philosophy of life.
Since the Mediterranean Sea is surrounded by 16 countries, this diet is rather various. Each region across Europe – from Spain to the Middle East – has its own basic set of food ingredients, formed in accordance with the availability of a particular food and cultural preferences in the region.
However, the similarity is that the diet mainly consists of fresh local products – vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grain pasta and bread, nuts, olives and olive oil (the main source of good unsaturated fats!), as well as diary products, poultry, eggs and some red wine (not more than 2 glasses per day).
Why Mediterranean diet is good for health
One of its greatest advantages is significant decrease of cardiovascular diseases risk. The recent study has provided evidence that it helps preventing cardiovascular diseases, decreasing overweight and living happier.
The research has compared this diet with the low-fat one and proved the healing effect of the Mediterranean type of eating for patients with heart disorders. At first this was a real sensation, since for a long time there was an opinion that the main measure to prevent cardiovascular disorders is to reduce ALL fats on a daily basis. Everything turned out to be more complicated: it’s not just all fats are to be reduced, it’s bad saturated fats should be limited. And good unsaturated fats should be included in the diet.
In short, good fats reduce the risk of metabolic disorder (high blood pressure and blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol and fat in the abdominal cavity), as well as the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases as it’s mainly consist of fresh and good quality vegetable products, has low content of red meat, dab saturated fats and processed grain. People who follow this diet prefer mostly red wine to strong spirits.
All these factors together make the Mediterranean diet a smart and tasty choice for a healthier and happier life.