There are countless types of dieting options available, it can be challenging to know which one is best for you. With goals such as weight loss and healthy living, programs range from incredibly restrictive to more balanced and manageable. The Mediterranean Diet most definitely falls in to the more balanced category. The pros and cons of the Mediterranean Diet is based on the eating style of individuals living in the Mediterranean who have eaten this way for hundreds of years.. If you are considering changing your eating habits, you may be curious about the pros and cons of a Mediterranean diet.
Pros of a Mediterranean Diet
• Weight Loss
Perhaps one of the most appealing pros of a Mediterranean diet is potential weight loss. Mediterranean diets are comprised of fiber rich, plant-based foods. This eating style favors lean proteins such as fish and chicken and steers clear of red meat. Fat comes mostly from the heavy use of olive oil, nuts and other legumes. The Mediterranean diet avoids sweets, dairy, butter, heavy sauces and gravies.
• Reduction of Health Risks
The impact that the Mediterranean diet may have on certain health conditions is another positive aspect of this eating style. A study conducted on women in Spain demonstrated that a Mediterranean diet may be associated with a lower risk of breast cancer. Additionally, the Mediterranean diet could be a good choice for those with heart disease. Studies show eating this way may help reduce one’s risk for heart attacks and strokes.
The Mediterranean diet is full of vibrant, tasty foods! From fresh seafood to red wine, there is no lack of flavor. The natural essence of each ingredient shines with simple seasoning.
Cons of a Mediterranean Diet
• Calcium Loss
One should be mindful of maintaining adequate calcium levels due to the lack of dairy used in Mediterranean diets. You may decide to discuss calcium supplements with your doctor if calcium loss is a concern for you.
• Low Iron
Avoiding red meat may mean a dip in iron levels. That being said, dark green, leafy vegetables are a great source of iron. If you are forgoing the steak, adding dark, leafy greens to your plant-based diet may help keep your iron levels up.
• Saying Goodbye to Some Old Friends
Most of the pros and cons of a Mediterranean diet are manageable. However, if you’ve got a sweet tooth, the Mediterranean diet may prove challenging. Fat comes from olive oil and nuts instead of the beloved baked goods, butter and cream.
Be sure to discuss the pros and cons of a Mediterranean diet with your doctor before you make any significant changes in your eating habits. A health care professional can help you determine if this is the best choice for you.