Today, a myriad of diets flood the internet and social groups constantly, urging you to reevaluate your lifestyle. Delving into these dietary trends, you may notice a common theme of restriction. But who enjoys being constantly told what they can't have?
Unreasonable limitations may cause you to abort the mission before you even start-- ditching your plans and returning to what you're used to. Even if you attempt to take on a new lifestyle, you may quickly become discouraged by how difficult it is to keep up with all of the rules everyday. This is precisely why I don't believe in restrictive diets and lifestyles that leave my clients feeling unhappy and unacomplished.
If you want to eat food you enjoy and feel great while looking after your health, the Mediterranean Diet might be a good fit for you. Recognized as one of the healthiest and most sustainable diets globally, it effortlessly guides you towards better overall health and is absolutely delicious. So many diets are unreasonable, unsustainable, and sometimes even unhealthy. You might find that the Mediterranean Diet can become a way of life that is easier to stick to and it is that feeling of follow-through that will promote self - confidence which can’t be underestimated on your journey to overall well being and happiness.
The Mediterranean Diet Defined
One can say that people in Greece and Italy are generally healthy, thriving, and enjoying life -- and The Mediterranean Diet is based on what they traditionally eat in these Mediterranean countries. This way of eating is flexible, with an emphasis on vegetables, fresh fish and high-quality cheese. You can also modify this diet to be vegan or vegetarian if you choose. For example, you can use non-dairy cheeses or skip the fish and enjoy some seaweed salad, so you still soak up those vitamins and minerals from the sea.
Along with the food guidelines of this way of eating, the Mediterranean Diet also addresses fitness and relationships. One important aspect of this lifestyle is regular exercise. However, the key factor when considering exercise is not the output or results, it’s all about moving in a way that’s enjoyable to you. When following this lifestyle, you are also encouraged to frequently share meals with others, Mediterranean-style. By surrounding yourself with family or friends at meals, your mind will associate eating with good emotions, encouraging you to continue on this path.
So, what can you eat when you decide to follow in the footsteps of the Mediterranean people?
Foods You Can Eat
When you follow the Mediterranean Diet, you'll be focusing on fresh foods. You will be eating more veggies, fruits, whole grains, seeds, nuts, and legumes. These foods are the base of every meal. Fresh fish or seafood is encouraged a few times a week while poultry and high-quality dairy are also enjoyed moderately. (If you are meat-free, simply skip the meat!)
Red meats and sweets aren't forbidden per se, but they are considered as foods you should eat only sometimes. And of course, healthy fats are a must, which is why olive oil and olives themselves, avocados, nuts, and seeds are used as the primary healthy fats for this diet. See? You get to eat plenty of good food!
Foods That Are Not Supported
As you can tell by the length of the last section in comparison to this one, the Mediterranean Diet focuses much more on the “yes”s than the “no”s. That being said, there are a few things that aren't supported in this lifestyle. Processed foods or meats, added sugars, sweetened beverages (we're looking at you, soda!) refined grains or oils, and trans fats are off limits in this diet. While these may seem difficult to avoid in modern culture, you will be amazed by what cutting out processed foods can do for your health!
Why the Mediterranean Diet is Great
With the Mediterranean Diet, you get a lot more flexibility and fewer restrictions. There's no counting or tracking, so you don’t need to consistently measure out your food or scan labels to ensure they are permitted. This lifestyle is fairly easy to follow; all you have to remember is the emphasis on fresh foods, fitness and fun. For these reasons, the Mediterranean Diet is a highly encouraged and sustainable option for so many who are looking to improve their health and wellbeing.
Remember, good health isn't only about losing weight to get to that number on the scale or a specific dress size, it's about keeping your heart, your brain and organs in good health, too. ”Healthy” is a feeling, a mental state, good energy, the way your body feels and operates, not a certain image in the mirror. Food is meant to fuel your mind, body and spirit, and a healthy diet impacts each of these areas of your life equally.
This new image of good health reshapes the way we look at diets. It's time we threw out the notion that diets should be something restrictive and tedious. By following through with a more sustainable way of eating, you will certainly find yourself feeling happier and more confident. Rather than resorting to following the restrictions of fad diets, embrace the freedom of the Mediterranean Diet! Go for a walk outside, spend some time with your loved ones or delve into a delicious plate of Mediterranean-inspired food!
Claudia is an NBC-HWC Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach, the owner of Vibrant Health by Claudia LLC and Virtual Health Coaches LLC. She studied health and wellness coaching at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where she also completed courses in Gut Health, Hormone Health, and Advanced Coaching. She is a certified 21-Day Sugar Detox Coach as well as a co-author of two Amazon Bestsellers “The Ultimate Guide to creating your soul aligned Business” and “The Ultimate Guide to Becoming a successful soul professional”.
To schedule a time for a free information call click here or join her Vibrant Health Power Community - a free Facebook Group - here.