The Mediterranean diet has been named the best diet of 2019, and it’s for good reason. This diet has been shown in multiple studies to reduce the risk of heart disease, dementia, depression and cancer. Now that’s the power of food!
And in case you’re wondering why the Mediterranean diet is so beneficial, it's because it ensures meaningful intakes of fiber, good fats, antioxidants and plant sterols. The Mediterranean diet is not vegan, paleo or keto. It encourages eating greens, beans, nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, grains (in their whole and most unprocessed forms), fish and low-fat dairy in reasonable amounts. Meat is not completely excluded but it comprises a small minority of calories.
Despite the connotation, the Mediterranean diet does NOT mean bowls and bowls of pasta. In general, processed grain products, like bread and pasta, comprise a small component of the Mediterranean approach. We tend to forget that pasta is traditionally served as an appetizer in Italy – a small serving of noodles before the main course (which is typically a simple fish course without additional starches).
Step One products, which are made with nuts, seeds, whole grains and fruits and (for some products) beans, fit in perfectly with the Mediterranean approach. So if you hope to eat for your best health in 2019, we’ve got you covered.
And what was named worst diet of the year? Keto. And why? Because with the Keto diet, carbohydrate intake is restricted to 20 grams daily. This is such a small amount that it doesn’t allow for meaningful consumption of fruits, beans or any whole grain foods. While you may end up significantly decreasing calorie intake with Keto, which helps promote weight loss, this eating approach removes important nutrients from your diet like fiber and antioxidants which are essential to health but are only found as part of complex carbohydrates (like fruits, beans, and whole grains).
So if you're going to chose a diet, go with Mediterranean.
But I have to tell you that I hate the word “diet”. Because it implies deprivation and tends to put the focus on weight loss. We shouldn’t primarily eat to lose weight. We should primarily eat to build health. Because if you eat to build health, the weight thing will take care of itself.
And that approach can be summarized in my favorite 8 words of dietary advice: Eat real food. Not too much. Mostly plants. Which is really no diet at all. It's simply about eating differently than the way you've been eating (if the way you were eating led to excess weight or other health issues).
My advice for long term dietary success? At every food occasion, make the best choice you can. And then feel really good about the better choice you made. None of us is perfect, but every better choice adds up to better health.
Step One Foods was created to help you achieve your best health by offering you a much better choice, twice per day.