Mediterranean Diet: 10 Reasons to Begin Right Now

Mediterranean Diet

In the minds of most of us, the word “diet” is closely related to the word “weight loss”. In fact, a diet is a nutrition system that helps our body function properly. Frankly speaking, the second option suits the Mediterranean diet much more, because it doesn’t tell you to adhere to a strict list. Instead, you are recommended to consume larger quantities of some foods and less of others.

The diet that comes from the shores of the Mediterranean sea has been surrounded by legends for decades.

  • On the one hand, it is considered one of the healthiest diets in the world;
  • On the other hand, scientists have just recently discovered that it does not work for everyone.

Either way, every person should try to eat like the inhabitants of the sunny Barcelona at least once in his life. Why? We can give you at least ten reasons to do so.

HELPS TO LOSE WEIGHT

People who strictly monitor their calories, and not the quality of their menu lose less weight than those, who follow a weight loss diet that is rich in calories and useful fats, like:

  • olive oil,
  • nuts,
  • fatty fish.

This conclusion was drawn by the scientists of the University of Barcelona (Universitat de Barcelona), who called the reduction of fats in the menu the least effective way to lose weight.

PROLONGS LIFE

One of ten inhabitants of the Italian village of Acciaroli, located on the coast in the province of Salerno, lives up to 110 years. This is reported by the National Geographic, noting that the secret of longevity in this case lies both in a mild climate and in an optimal nutrition system. Numerous tests have shown that the menu of Acciaroli inhabitants differs from the usual menu for the Italians only through the fact that they abundantly season their food with rosemary. By the way, anchovies are the second most popular local product.

inhabitants of Salerno

IMPROVES BRAIN FUNCTION

Elderly people, who followed the Mediterranean diet, retained a larger brain volume for the next three years, compared to those, who observed a different nutrition style. The study, published in the journal Neurology, defined the volume as a combination of the amount of gray matter and the thickness of the outer brain layer.

REDUCES THE RISK OF CANCER

IMPROVES BRAIN FUNCTION

According to researchers from the medical center of the US Department of Veterans Affairs, the Mediterranean diet reduces

  • the risk of developing breast cancer during life by 57%,
  • the risk of a heart attack and stroke by 29%,
  • the risk of type 2 diabetes – by 30%.

CONTROLS DIABETES

A couple of words about diabetes. According to the Daily Mail, referring to a recent survey of 20 large studies, in which about 3,000 people took part with already diagnosed diabetes, the Mediterranean diet is able of stabilizing the level of cholesterol and blood sugar. Moreover, this nutrition system is equally indicated both for those who already live with diabetes and for those who are at risk.

CONTROLS DIABETES

SUPPORTS THE HEART

People with cardiovascular diseases should follow a diet high in:

  • olive oil,
  • fresh vegetables,
  • nuts.

This measure can help them avoid the need for using potent drugs. At least, this is what Italian scientists believe. They found out that the Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of death from heart and vascular disease by 37%.

IMPROVES SEXUAL ACTIVITY

However, scientific data in this respect only exist in relation to men. As shown by experiments at the University of California, a diet rich in healthy fats and vitamins:

  • reduces the risk of erectile dysfunction,
  • increases testosterone levels in men, contributing to additional sex drive.

IMPROVES SEXUAL ACTIVITY

PREVENTS ADHD

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a developmental disorder that begins in childhood, which is more common today. The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, showed that children who consume lots of sugar and bad fats with their daily menu are seven times more likely to suffer from a disorder, than their peers.

The scientists also managed to find out that common symptoms of ADHD are often noticed in children, who rarely eat:

  • fish,
  • olive oil,
  • fruits,
  • vegetables.

STRENGTHENS BONES

Women who follow the Mediterranean diet have a lower risk (on average – by 30%) of a hip fracture, in contrast to women, who do not monitor their nutrition. This conclusion was made by Bavarian researchers, who found out that the nutrients found in the main Mediterranean products are able to protect against osteoporosis by preventing thinning of bone tissue. These foods are:

  • olive oil,
  • light yogurt and cheese,
  • nuts,
  • fresh vegetables and fruits,
  • fish and poultry,
  • grains and red wine.

osteoporosis

RELIEVES THE SYMPTOMS OF ARTHRITIS

According to a study by the University of Kent, the Mediterranean diet can reduce inflammation markers and improve the condition of the knee and hip joint in people with arthritis. A small study held in Japan also showed that consumption of foods typical for this diet can sometimes suppress rheumatoid arthritis.