While researching my post about nutritional psychiatry(see post here) a lot of the sources I found mentioned the Mediterranean Diet and its many benefits for mental health. I have done some research in the past about the Mediterranean Diet when looking for a meal plan. I was intrigued by how doable this diet seems because it is important to not restrict yourself too much. Restricting certain foods is what leads to binge eating.
The Mediterranean Diet first became popular in the 1960’s when it became noticeable that Mediterranean countries had fewer deaths from heart disease than the U.S. Not long after research seemed to show a correlation between the diet of people in the Mediterranean and the lowered risk of heart disease. Other benefits of the Mediterranean diet can be weight loss, lowered risk of heart attack and stroke, and lowered risk of type 2 diabetes.
What is the Mediterranean Diet?
- Daily Consumption of:
- Whole Grains
- Healthy Fats
- Weekly Consumption of:
- Moderate Portions of Dairy
- Limited Intake of Red Meat
The Mediterranean diet focuses on non-animal sources of food. Dairy, eggs, seafood, and poultry are eaten in moderation and red meat is eaten only on occasion. Healthy fats like olive oil are a big part of this diet along with nuts and seeds. Red wine is drank in moderation as well. I can definitely get on board with that!
What to Avoid
- Added Sugars
- Refined Grains
- Trans Fat
- Refined Oils
- Processed Meat
- Processed Foods
- Aim for 7-10 Servings of Fruits and Veggies
- Choose whole grains over white bread and refined wheat pasta
- Choose olive oil over butter
- Reduce red meat
- Boost Flavors with herbs and spices to increase flavor and avoid extra salt
The Healthline site has a lot of great ideas for different foods to eat on the diet so I recommend checking it out!