The Mediterranean diet is based on the consumption of fresh and natural foods such as olive oil, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, vinegar, cereals, fish, milk, and cheese, being necessary to avoid industrialized products such as sausages, frozen and prefabricated food.
A Mediterranean diet meal plan is really a type of diet that helps change the lifestyle, and it is not always necessary to be low in calories to help lose weight, as it naturally helps improve metabolism and promote weight control.
The Mediterranean diet meal plan is not only a diet to lose weight, it is more a lifestyle that is present in the countries that are around the Mediterranean Sea. Its main health benefits are:
- Reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, and degenerative diseases;
- Protect the body from atherosclerosis and thrombosis;
- This is a cheaper version;
- It contains more nutrients and provides more vitamins and minerals than industrialized foods;
- It makes the diet more diversified, is excellent for the taste buds of the children, and makes it easier for them to eat vegetables and salads.
To lead a healthy, Mediterranean-style diet, you should consume fruits and vegetables that are of vegetable origin, fresh, unprocessed, of the season, and preferably from a local source. Buying fruit in a small market or a greengrocer is a better idea than buying them in a supermarket.
How to do the Mediterranean diet meal plan
To build up the meal plan, you must alter the diet as follows:
1. Avoid industrialized products
It is best to avoid industrialized products and eat a diet that is mainly made of natural products that are from vegetables, such as olive oil, brown rice, soy, eggs, and milk.
Removing industrialized products will help reduce the production of toxins in the body, reduce inflammation, and combat fluid retention, which is helpful in reducing swelling.
2. Eating fish
Fish should be eaten at least 3 times a week, because they are a source of protein and beneficial fats (such as omega-3), have anti-inflammatory effects, help relieve joint pain, improve blood circulation, increase good cholesterol and reduce bad cholesterol and prevent heart disease.
3. Olive oil and good fats
Olive oil and vegetable oils such as canola and flaxseed oil are rich in heart-good fats, helping to control cholesterol and prevent cardiovascular disease. To get the benefits, olive oil should be added to ready meals, consuming a maximum of 2 tablespoons per day.
Other sources of good fats are olives and nuts such as peanuts, walnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts, which should be consumed 1 to 2 servings per day.
The Mediterranean diet meal plan is rich in whole foods including cereals such as oats, rye, and barley; brown rice; whole wheat pasta; and whole-grain bread, which are foods rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals that improve the functioning of the body, fight constipation and decrease the absorption of sugars and fats in the intestine.
In addition to this, it is also rich in high-protein grains such as beans, soybeans, and chickpeas, which also help strengthen muscles and improve metabolism.
5. Fruits and vegetables
Increasing the consumption of fruits and vegetables is an important point in this Mediterranean diet meal plan because they provide fibers, vitamins, and minerals for the body, causing a greater feeling of satiety and favor weight loss.
6. Skim milk and derivatives
In order to improve nutrition and reduce fat consumption, you should prefer to use skimmed milk, natural yogurt, and ricotta cheese, cottage cheese, and other white cheese, or choose a low-fat version of the product, always pay attention to reading the nutrition label.
Drinking 30 cc of wine daily is proven to help heart health, due to its high content of polyphenols such as resveratrol, which helps take care of blood vessels. Alcohol can have negative effects on your health if you drink too much of it.
3-day Mediterranean diet meal plan
Below is a 3-day diet meal plan example menu:
|Meals||Day 1||Day 2||Day 3|
|Breakfast||1 glass of skim milk + 1 whole wheat bread with ricotta seasoned with herbs + 1 slice of papaya||Banana and apple smoothie made with skim milk + 2 tablespoons oatmeal||Oatmeal atol made with 200 ml of skim milk + 2 tablespoons of flake oatmeal + 1 tablespoon of cocoa|
|Morning snack||3 rice toast + 1 teaspoon butter + 10 pcs peanuts||1 glass of green juice of cabbage, lemon, and carrot + 4 cookies type Maria or cornstarch||1 plain yogurt + 1 teaspoon chia seeds|
|Lunch/ Dinner||1/2 wheel of grilled salmon + 2 cooked potatoes + 2 tablespoons of peas + lettuce, tomato, and red onion salad + 1 pear||1 grilled chicken fillet with natural tomato sauce + 4 tablespoons brown rice + 2 tablespoons beans + cabbage salad, grated carrot and grated beetroot + 1 slice of pineapple||Pasta with tuna in pesto sauce, using wholemeal pasta + sautéed cabbage salad with onion, garlic, and eggplant + 1 orange|
|Afternoon snack||1 plain yogurt + 1 teaspoon flaxseed + 1 tapioca with light cheese + 1 banana||1 plain yogurt + 10 strawberries + 6 almonds||1 glass of beet juice, carrot, ginger, lemon, and apple + 1 whole wheat bread with ricotta cheese|
This Mediterranean diet meal plan menu should be prepared preferably using fresh vegetables and fruits, it is also important to add 1 teaspoon of olive oil to the lunch dish and one at dinner.