The age-old question I hear is this, “What is the best diet for me?”
Although some people have food sensitivities or allergies, there is a way of eating that works well for brain health, cardiovascular health, diabetes prevention, and overall good health for a majority of the population.
The Mediterranean diet is the winner that keeps showing up in much of my research. This diet includes:
- mostly plant-based food (legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, whole grains)
- eating poultry and wild-caught fish at least twice a week
- eating primarily olive oil (extra-virgin, cold-pressed)
- limited red meats and sugars
What makes it so effective? Some argue that it’s the olive oil; others the fact that it consists of high vegetable, low meat intake; perhaps it’s due to the reduction of processed foods and sugar.
I believe it’s a combination of all of the above.
At any rate, because this way of eating decreases inflammation, it helps protect the body from diseases related to chronic inflammation: obesity, type 2 diabetes, dementia (such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s), heart disease, depression, and cancer.
People in the Mediterranean region seem happy and full of life. It’s important to note that it’s a combination of their lifestyle factors and their unprocessed diets that has promoted their longevity and low rates of disease for centuries.
According to the Harvard School of Public Health, “Together with regular physical activity and not smoking, our analyses suggests that over 80 percent of coronary heart disease, 70 percent of stroke, and 90 percent of type 2 diabetes can be avoided by healthy food choices that are consistent with the traditional Mediterranean diet.”
Wow, pretty impressive!
As we approach the holiday season, make a plan now that you can realistically follow so a resolution about “eating better,” “losing weight,” or “going to the gym,” doesn’t show up on your 2019 list.
If you’re not sure what that would look like, or how to begin, I’m here to help. Please do not wait until you’re feeling the misery of too many Christmas cookies. Send me an email today. Together, we can make this your brightest holiday season ever!
“Let your food be your medicine and let your medicine be your food.”–Hippocrates