[This is a guest post by Eva Alexander who blogs at Mediterranean Diet]
a) Most people say the Mediterranean diet is high in fat. Can people still lose or maintain weight on a Mediterranean diet?
While the Mediterranean diet is high in fat, it is high in the monounsaturated and polyunsaturated healthy fats, in contrast to diets rich in saturated fat. It is not the fat content that will determine weight loss on the Mediterranean diet. People who wish to eat the Mediterranean diet may experience other health benefits but still not lose weight if they do not lower their caloric intake.
b) What makes the Mediterranean diet different from the common American diet?
Americans consume high amounts of red meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy, while the Mediterranean includes very little. The diet also differs from the typical American diet through its dependence on fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, olive oil, beans, breads, cereals, and potatoes.
c) Why people in the Mediterranean have lower heart disease?
Research has indicated that the foods in the Mediterranean diet play an important role in lowering heart disease. Research also indicates that the Mediterranean diet requires a more holistic approach to a healthy lifestyle than most other diets.
d) Does regular exercise has a place in the Mediterranean diet and lifestyle?
Exercise is a vital part of maintaining the Mediterranean diet. The Mediterranean diet is based on the food choices and lifestyles of the region during the early Sixties and during that time period, physical activity was an important part of their culture. Daily hourly walks are encouraged, as are exercises for at least one hour a week that utilize the entire body.
e) What is the difference between Low Carb and Mediterranean diets?
There is a sea of difference between these two diets. With the Mediterranean diet, your protein consumption would be lower. Normally, you will get 15 percent of your calorie consumption from the protein content of a Mediterranean diet.
f) Final word of advice
The Mediterranean lifestyle is most effective when including a range of root vegetables, foods high in omega-3 acids, and vegetable oils such as flaxseed or canola. Along with fruits, breads, and cereals, these foods may lower your risk for cardiovascular disease.
[Eva started mediterraneandiet.org.uk in 2009 to help people with objective and credible information on healthy eating.]