Psynergy’s Mediterranean diet
In today’s post, I would like to briefly introduce you to the main outline of the diet we base our menus on at Psynergy. We follow the traditional Mediterranean diet, in keeping with guidelines set by the American Diabetic Association, American Heart Association and the USDA.
A Mediterranean diet incorporates the traditional healthy living habits of people from countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, including France, Greece, Italy and Spain.
The traditional Mediterranean diet is rich in vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, beans, cereals, grains, fish, and unsaturated fats such as olive oil. It usually includes a low intake of meat and features minimally processed foods.
What are the health benefits?
A Mediterranean diet is high in nutrients such as omega-3, B vitamins, vitamin D, zinc, folic acid, selenium and iron. These nutrients are essential for optimal functioning of our brains. More and more research shows that this diet may have a number of positive effects on mood and mental health. Other research into the Mediterranean diet has shown it may reduce our risk of developing conditions like type-2 diabetes, high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol, which are all risk factors for heart disease. Researchers have also found that people who closely follow a Mediterranean diet may live a longer life and are less likely to put on weight.
How does it work?
The research into the benefits of this diet is ongoing. It may eventually identify certain foods that have greater significance for health. For now however, it seems it is the overall diet approach and the combination of foods, rather than individual ‘superfoods’, that make this such a healthy way to eat.
This makes sense, as it’s true to say that if you are eating a diet full of processed foods, adding one healthy element, such as olive oil, is unlikely to have noticeable health benefits if that is the only change you make. However, if you adjust your whole diet then it could make a significant difference.
You can make your diet more Mediterranean-style by:
- Eating plenty of whole grains and cereals such as brown rice, wholegrain pasta and whole-wheat bread
- Eating plenty of fruit and vegetables
- Including fish in your diet weekly
- Eating less meat
- Choosing products made from vegetable and plant oils, such as olive oil, natural seeds and nuts