Ten Things that Will Motivate You to Follow the Mediterranean Diet

August 12, 2019
The Mediterranean diet is one of the most scientifically supported diets in terms of health benefits. In this article, discover ten reasons to follow it.

Following the Mediterranean diet is one of the best options for those who want to maintain their ideal weight while staying healthy.

What’s so special about this diet?

We invite you to continue reading to discover how much this diet can benefit your health.

The Mediterranean Diet

This diet isn’t just a series of nutritional recommendations; it’s much more than that. Actually, it’s associated with a balanced lifestyle and constitutes an authentic cultural heritage of the peoples of the Mediterranean region.

In fact, on November 16, 2010, it was declared an intangible cultural heritage in a joint designation of Spain, Greece, Italy, and Morocco.

What foods make up the Mediterranean diet?

If you follow the Mediterranean diet, you can eat all kinds of foods, as long as you respect the famous food pyramid, which lays the foundations of what foods should be eaten daily, the foods that should be eaten weekly, and those that you should only consume occasionally.

Healthy foods.

The Mediterranean diet is one of the healthiest eating plans out there, as it promotes healthy and balanced eating.

Foods you should eat daily:

  • Grains. Pasta, rice, and bread are a few examples. Experts recommend consuming 30 grams of bread per day and between 60 and 80 grams of pasta and rice per day.
  • Fruits and vegetables. The food pyramid indicates that people should consume 5 portions of fruit and vegetables (alternated) per day, which equals 120-180 grams of fruit and between 150 and 200 grams of vegetables.
  • A half-liter of water per day.
  • A glass of milk or two yogurts.
  • A tablespoon of raw extra virgin olive oil.
  • Dressings such as onions and raw garlic.

Foods you should eat weekly:

  • Fish
  • Lean meat
  • Red meat (experts recommend one serving per week).
  • Eggs: Two to four servings per week.
  • Legumes and potatoes (experts recommend eating them 3 times a week).

Foods you should only eat occasionally:

  • Pastries
  • Cakes
  • Candies
  • Sugar
  • Juices and sugary sodas

Read on: 6 Health Benefits of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Ten Things to Motivate You to Follow the Mediterranean Diet

1. It’s considered one of the best diets based on scientific evidence.

The Mediterranean diet is considered one of the most scientifically supported diets in terms of health benefits.

It’s interested the scientific community for a while now, especially due to its therapeutic role against various diseases associated with chronic inflammation, such as metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart disease, neurodegenerative diseases, and cancer, among others.

A woman eating a salad.

The Mediterranean diet has been extensively investigated due to its health benefits. It can even help prevent and treat various diseases.

2. It boosts good cholesterol.

According to researchers at the Obesity and Nutrition Centre of Biomedical Research Network (CIBERobn) and of the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM), the Mediterranean diet helps the particles that carry the so-called good cholesterol, which prevents clogged arteries, to operate properly.

3. It reduces the risk of heart disease.

Studies have shown that cases of heart disease are less frequent in Mediterranean countries due to the high amount of nutrients the traditional recipes contain.

4. It reduces the risk of breast cancer, heart attacks, and stroke.

One study showed that the Mediterranean diet decreases circulatory problems by 66%, heart attacks and stroke by 30%, and the risk of breast cancer by 68%.

5. It fights severe depression.

A team of scientists from Deakin University Australia conducted a series of tests that determined that the Mediterranean diet fights severe depression.

A woman with depression.

Following the Mediterranean diet can contribute to the prevention and treatment of depression. Healthy foods have a positive effect on the brain’s chemistry.

6. It increases longevity.

People who follow the Mediterranean diet tend to live longer as it favors life expectancy and slows down the aging process thanks to its meal plan that consists of foods rich in antioxidants and high-quality nutrients.

7. It’s good for obesity.

Olive oil is much healthier than butter and other animal and vegetable fats typical of other diets. Therefore, it’s a good option to deal with obesity.

Read on: Five Healthy and Low-Calorie Foods You Should Include in Your Diet

8. It helps prevent mental decline.

Leafy vegetables prevent cell degradation since they contain a lot of antioxidants.

Eating at least one serving a day of such vegetables helps slow down cognitive decline associated with aging, as suggested by a study published in the journal Neurology.

9. It helps people reach their ideal weight.

The Mediterranean diet is varied and has a low caloric intake. If you combine it with exercise, you’ll be able to reach your ideal weight. Fighting obesity also reduces the risk of many diseases that worsen when the patient isn’t in shape.

A woman weighing herself.

Unlike “miracle” diets, the Mediterranean diet helps people reach their ideal weight without causing adverse effects. It also promotes the prevention of diseases associated with being overweight or obese.

10. Following the Mediterranean diet helps the environment.

One of the foundations of the Mediterranean diet is the consumption of fresh and seasonal foods. Adopting these eating habits helps the environment by encouraging the proper use of natural resources.

After reading these ten reasons to follow the Mediterranean diet, are you ready to give it a try?

Take advantage of summer the many fruits and vegetables that allow you to put these tips in practice!

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  • Knoops KT, de Groot LC, Kromhout D, Perrin AE, Moreiras-Varela O, Menotti A, et al. Mediterranean diet, lifestyle factors, and 10-year mortality in elderly European men and women: the HALE project. JAMA 2004; 292 (12): 1433-9.