Diet Review - The Mediterranean Diet
THE MEDITERRANEAN DIET
- Not a diet in the classic sense.
- Stresses health benefits of diets high in olive oil, fish, nuts, fruit and vegetables.
- Associated with lower mortality rate and lower risk of cardiovascular disease.
The first thing to understand about the Mediterranean Diet is it is not a diet in the way we think of modern diets.
No one came up with the Mediterranean Diet. Instead, The Mediterranean Diet is a collection of observations regarding the health benefits from the dietary intake of people from the Mediterranean region. People from this region tend to have diets high in olive oil, fish, nuts, and fresh fruit and vegetables.
People who eat diets high in these foods tend to have a lower mortality rate and a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. To understand why you simply need to understand that the foods in question each possess unique health benefits.
The Diet Protocol
- The primary tenets of the diet include consuming plentiful amounts of fish, olive oil, legumes, unrefined cereals, fruits and vegetables.
- Dieters are also encouraged to eat modest amounts of dairy products and wine, and sparing amounts of meat and meat products to match that of the Mediterranean inhabitants.
- Fat represents about 25-35% of all calories, with the majority of the fat coming by way of the healthier monounsaturated fat.
- High dietary fiber intake is another key aspect of the diet.
Many of the foods in the Mediterranean Diet, such as extra virgin olive oil, have unique properties that promote health and weight maintenance. As a "way to eat" the Mediterranean Diet supports excellent food choices that individually lend themselves out to weight loss and good cardiovascular health.
The primary weakness of the Mediterranean Diet is adherence. Because the Mediterranean Diet is not a system per se, it does not deal with the practical and biological (that's correct, biological) issues to adhering to the diet, particularly for weight loss.
The Problem of Binge Eating
The Mediterranean Diet does not adequately address the biological causes of binge eating. A key component of the LookCut Approach is to understand that binging is induced by rich foods. When food gets beyond a certain density of energy (meaning packing a lot of energy in a small volume of food) it turns off the bodies hormonal signals for fullness and satiety. This is a biological response to food. Unless you understand this and have a method for dealing with it, you will ALWAYS be prone to periodic binging. Thus, as a way to eat, The Mediterranean Diet lacks any understanding or method for dealing with this very real problem.
Does it work for Weight Loss?
The foods in the Mediterranean Diet are excellent choices for any weight loss regimen. On the Mediterranean Diet you will definitely lose weight over time. The real issue, as previously mentioned, is the problem of adherence.