Let food be your medicine, the Mediterranean Diet
A new study affiliated with Dr. Mora, a cardiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston supports the theory attributed to Hippocrates of “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” In a world of convenience, we have fallen into the mundane ritual of indulging in the Western Diet, which includes unhealthy levels of highly-saturated fats, sugars and empty calories. This diet has had an impact on otherwise healthy women and has contributed to the leading cause of death in women in the U.S., which is heart disease. The Mediterranean Diet is ranked as the top diet linked to numerous health benefits and according to Dr. Mora, it is a diet that will satisfy all your desires for flavorful meals and snacks.
What separates the Mediterranean Diet from other popular diets one might ask? Well, the abundant variety of food and lack of discipline makes staying on a non-regimented diet plan easy. In Dr. Mora’s words “Unlike some diets, adhering to the Mediterranean Diet is sustainable in the long run because the regimen is varied and doesn’t make you feel like you’re denying yourself from eating what you like.” The diet is unlike most others and it does not restrict you from indulging in red meats, red wine and fats. Participating in the Mediterranean Diet does not mean you will be following a low-fat diet, which most popular diets push, in contrast, the Mediterranean Diet advocates for a moderate fat diet. In order to see health benefits, you’re not required to go full Mediterranean, as long as you stay moderately on track with this diet you will see health benefits.
In the United States, February is considered American Heart Month and the Mediterranean Diet directly relates to this topic with surprising health benefits attributed to the cardiovascular system. The Mediterranean Diet is associated with reducing cardiovascular disease by 25 to 28 percent according to research published by JAMA Network Open, an international peer-reviewed medical journal. Following 25,994 healthy women from the U.S. over a period of 12 years who consumed this diet scientist associated the diet to a significant reduction in:
- heart disease
- decreased inflammation
- improved glucose metabolism
- lower blood pressure
According to other studies, the diet is also linked to:
- weight loss
- prevention of chronic diseases such as cancer, dementia and diabetes
With heart disease being the leading cause of death for women in the U.S. and two-thirds of those women dying without showing any symptoms it is crucial to recognize food as a medicine. This diet will be easy, allowing you to consume nuts, fish, legumes, vegetables, olive oil, a wide variety of herbs, poultry, eggs, cheese and a moderate level of red wine. Lastly, the diet even allows for occasional sweets and red meats. Simply put, this diet has a wide variety of foods you already love and is credited for numerous health benefits, most importantly the decreased risks of cardiovascular disease.