You’re doing all the hard work in the gym but that pesky fat won’t go away? What you put into your body for fuel determines what happens to fat stores just as much or more than exercise does. Be careful that you aren’t sabotaging your workout efforts with careless eating habits.
Adopting the Mediterranean Diet is a great way to go for long term results. It isn’t a quick fix; however, it is sustainable. And delicious! It isn’t expensive either. But it only works if it’s fully understood and implemented properly.
So, is pizza part of the Mediterranean Diet? We can go eat our big bowls of spaghetti and avoid heart disease, right? No, sorry, that’s called the Italian food diet. Also delicious, but not with the same results.
What are the simple, basic differences we can make in our daily eating habits that will get us on the right track for an appropriate Mediterranean Diet so we can enjoy the long term benefits?
Use more spices and herbs / cut back on salt.
Eat more fish / less meat. Salmon, tuna, oysters, for example, provide omega 3s, a healthy essential fat for optimal brain function.
More whole grains & legumes / less refined or processed foods. Go for brown or wild rice, whole wheat breads and pastas, popcorn, and whole grain crackers. Your body needs the vitamin B and fiber. Legumes fill you up with good fats, fiber, and protein! They include chickpeas, edamame, lentils, black beans, kidney beans, and thousands more, and are all easy to add to salads, soups, or grind into a dip for your whole grain crackers!
Use olive oil / rather than butter and animal oils. Olive oil is already a well-known premium healthy fat.
Eat veggies, fruit, and nuts / rather than chips and sweets as snacks throughout the day. Veggies and fruits are loaded with useful stuff our bodies can use and don’t come at a high caloric price. Satisfy hunger with something that’s worth the calories! At my house, we have a “fruit bowl,” which I fill each morning with the good stuff (apples, oranges, bananas, a bag of mixed nuts) and it has to be emptied by the end of the day.
Dairy is a big part of this eating lifestyle too, but go for lowfat or goat dairy options. Add your own fruit to plain yogurt to avoid the huge amounts of added sugar in flavored yogurts!
More wine / less beer & liquor. One or two 5oz glasses of wine improves cholesterol, but any more than that has the opposite effect. Just because 1 glass is good, doesn’t mean that 4 glasses is four times as good.
Can you lose body fat and keep it off on the Mediterranean diet? In combination with exercise and frequent activity, yes! These foods keep you feeling full longer which will help you avoid loading up on too many calories. That also means you’ll have prolonged energy! It’s even better than a quick fix diet.
To go even another step in the right direction, eat slowly with other people and enjoy the flavors. Your body will thank you for sending those relaxing, repairing hormones in place of the stressed and hurried ones.
I’m toasting my glass of wine to your health and success!