The Mediterranean diet is packed with tons of delicious recipes and great food choices. But we all know when it comes to food, it’s more about eating what’s healthy than eating what tastes delicious.
Fortunately, the Mediterranean diet allows us to do both pretty easily. Everyone knows that this diet comes loaded with benefits, but what exactly are they? Will you be able to speak Italian or Greek fluently? Develop wings and fly?
Unfortunately not, but the Mediterranean diet comes with a whole load of health benefits. Let’s dive into what those benefits are now.
The first benefit is the biggest! The Mediterranean diet has been shown to actively decrease the risk of heart disease and potential strokes. Why is this so? The diet is loaded with tons of omega-3s, which greatly benefit the heart and overall health. You’ll be eating plenty of seafood, nuts, virgin olive oils, fruits, and vegetables.
It Helps Prevent Alzheimer’s
One of the world’s scariest diseases, Alzheimer’s Disease doesn’t have a known cure. But, there are plenty of things that can be done to prevent its onset.
In order to maintain solid brain health, you need to have a healthy blood flow to your body’s biggest organ. Those with poor blood flow to their brain are bound to have more problems which lead to cognitive failure and dementia or Alzheimer’s. Studies have shown that those following a Mediterranean diet are less likely to have such issues.
Helps With Depression and Anxiety
Your diet can have a huge impact on your mental health and many doctors prescribe a diet stocked with vegetables and healthy fats for those struggling with depression and anxiety. That means lots of leafy greens and eggs! This helps boosts up the number of good bacteria in your stomach and eventually, your overall mood.
It Can Stave off Type 2 Diabetes
Those struggling with type 2 diabetes may find the Mediterranean diet to be a great option. Those who followed the diet tended to supplement nuts and other options for high-carb or unhealthy snacks. It helps stabilize your blood sugar over a long period of time.
It also ties into the aforementioned heart health benefit, improving your vascular health and overall bodily health.
Promotes Weight Loss and Weight Maintenance
For many, it can be hard to find those perfect foods that help with weight loss. Fiber is one of the most important parts of any well-balanced diet, and the Mediterranean diet is loaded with fiber. With high fiber, you’ll feel fuller sooner, lessening the chances of your overeating. It will also help boost up your metabolism by replacing those carbs with fruits, veggies, legumes, and beans.
Helps Post-Menopausal Women
Perhaps the most specific health benefit on the list, post-menopausal women who follow the Mediterranean diet has been shown to have greater bone and muscle mass. Since menopause usually reduces women’s bone and muscle mass, this is a promising sign for older women.
It May Help Prevent Cancer
Similar to Alzheimer’s, cancer doesn’t have a known cure but there are steps one can take to prevent the onset of cancer. While this isn’t a sure thing, there is plenty of evidence that gives the diet a strong case. While it may not prevent all types of cancer, it has been shown to be most effective when dealing with breast and colorectal cancer.
It Extends your Lifespan
Freddy Mercury and Queen once asked the question “who wants to live forever”. While some out there may be in search of immortality, others may want to live the longest, happiest life possible. The main reason the Mediterranean diet is linked with a longer lifespan is the heart rate. But the numerous other benefits listed above also help you extend your lifespan.
You might find some asterisks put next to other diets, but the Mediterranean diet doesn’t really have any that come with it. That’s because the diet relies on natural foods that are easy to find and a regimen that is incredibly easy to follow.
The only small caveat is you should monitor your fish consumption, as people should make sure they’re choosing low-mercury options. Other than that, there’s nothing to be overly concerned about.