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Healthy Balance

Is This the Healthiest Diet You Can Follow?

friends gathered enjoying mediterranean food
The Mediterranean diet is rich in healthy fats, vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes making it the healthiest diet overall.

The Mediterranean diet is considered to be one of the world’s healthiest diets. In fact, it was ranked as the best overall diet for 2019 by U.S. News and World Report. It also took the top spot for best diet for healthy eating, best heart-healthy diet, best diet for diabetes, best plant-based diet and easiest diet to follow.

Ranked as the Best Overall Diet

The Mediterranean diet emphasizes an eating style common to countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, like Greece and Italy. The diet focuses primarily on plant-based foods, including vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes. It also includes healthy fats, such as those found in olive oil, nuts and seeds.

What it doesn’t include is a lot of sugar, meat or other foods containing saturated fat, like butter. On this diet, you should limit red meat to no more than a few times a month and instead eat fish a few times a week. Eggs, poultry and dairy can be eaten, but in smaller portions than is typical in traditional Western diets. It’s important to drink red wine in moderation. Reduce salt intake by using more herbs and spices to flavor food.

More than just a diet, enjoy socializing by sharing meals with family and friends, eat mindfully and exercise.

Research has shown that following a Mediterranean eating style may reduce your risk of heart disease. It can also reduce the risk of:

    • Cancer
    • Alzheimer’s disease
    • Diabetes
    • Dementia
    • Depression
    • Parkinson’s disease

Aside from any potential health benefits, the Mediterranean style of eating is filled with whole foods that are delicious and nutritious.

Need Some Guidance?

Need help following a healthy diet? A team of registered dietitians can guide you at the Nutrition Counseling Center.

Quick tips for following this healthy diet:

  1. Eat nuts and seeds three times a week
  2. Eat fish two times a week
  3. Add a lot of vegetables
  4. Make your own salad dressing

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