Plenty of vegetables, legumes, fruit, and nuts – provide plenty of healthy ingredients such as essential vitamins and minerals, plant fibers, essential fatty acids and proteins. Daily consumption of these ingredients can reduce risk of some type of cancers, brain stroke, diabetes, cardiovascular and other chronic diseases.
- Extra virgin olive oil is the main source of fat in MED. Rich in vitamins E and K this type of monounsaturated fat has glycemic load- GL equal to zero. Regular intake of olive oil can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, has anti- inflammatory benefit, prevent oxidation of blood cholesterol, protects against brain stroke, reduce hot flashes in menopause, prevent type 2 diabetes, relieve constipation, prevent colon cancer. Extra virgin olive oil improve skin condition, strengthen nails and hair quality and it is the beauty “secret” of the Mediterranean population.
- Food that is processed as little as possible, local and seasonal.
- Rice, pasta, wholegrain cereals and bread are important sources of energy. The wholegrain cereals are rich in dietary fibre, vitamins and minerals, have lower GI, thus preventing overeating, stabilizing glucose level in the blood stream and providing longer lasting energy.
- Daily intakes of dairy products, preferably in the form of low fat probiotic yoghurt, low fat cheese, are important source of proteins.
- Lots of fish and moderate intake of eggs. Have two or more servings of blue fish per week – fish and eggs are rich source of high quality proteins.
- Consumption of red meat should be in moderation and best if consumed with vegetables and cereals as a part of stew. Always choose lean red meat, size of your hand palm. Red meat is good source of protein and blood iron.
- Fresh fruit intake on a daily basis instead of sugar and saturated fat desert. Sweets and other sugary foods should be limited to social occasions.
- Water is essence of our body therefore a daily intake of 1.5 – 2 l of water should be guaranteed. Wine is traditional part of Mediterranean way of life and it has to be consumed in moderation to enjoy its healthy habits.
- Regular physical exercise and moderate activity is part of the Mediterranean lifestyle and together they make up perfect combination of health, energy and beauty.