Who knew?! I certainly didn’t until the other day when my
boss co-worker mentioned it to me at lunch and suggested I blog about it. I usually listen to her, heck, she signs my paycheques, I better listen to her! But seriously, I do love Mediterranean food and thought it was a super duper suggestion. Now don’t worry that it’s almost the end of May, you can easily start this lifestyle any time of the year!
Simple steps for good health, the Mediterranean way:
- Eat lots of vegetables – set a goal to fill half your plate at lunch and dinner
- Change how you think about meat – enjoy small amounts for garnish and flavor
- Always eat breakfast – start your day with fruits, whole grains and foods that can help keep you full for hours
- Eat seafood twice a week – for brain and heart health, enjoy tuna, herring, salmon, shellfish and other fish
- Cook vegetarian meals once a week – when one meal feels comfortable, try two
- Use good fats – think extra virgin olive oil, nuts, seeds, peanuts, avocados, etc.
- Enjoy some dairy products – Greek or regular yogurt and a variety of traditional cheeses are great
- For dessert, eat fresh fruit – save sweets for a rare or special occasion
- BE active every day – dance, walk, swim, bike, garden, hike
- Spend time with family and friends – share your food and enjoy great conversation
If you’ve been following my blog you’ll know that I mostly eat dairy and gluten free. So why the heck am I posting about this when by looking at their pyramid it clearly states to eat BREAD and CHEESE daily. Well, I just want to prove that you can still enjoy this style of food while keeping it DF and GF. Let’s start with this tasty salad recipe:Serves 2
1/2 15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed (about 3/4 cup)
1 can water-packed chunk light tuna, drained and flaked
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, divided
2 teaspoons capers, rinsed
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice, divided
1.5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
Pepper to taste
4 cups romaine lettuce or any kind of salad greens
Combine chickpeas, tuna, bell pepper, onion, parsley, capers, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 clove of minced garlic and 1 tablespoon oil in a medium bowl. Season with pepper.
In a mason jar or shaker with a tight lid, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 clove of minced garlic and pepper, shake until well combined. Add this to the lettuce and toss to coat. Divide the lettuce among 2 plates. Top each with the tuna salad.Nutritional Info for one serving:
292 Calories, 22g Carbs, 11g Fat, 23g Protein, 465mg Sodium, 7g Sugar
Check out that protein – 23g thanks to the beans and tuna! And if this doesn’t pique your interest, the Mediterranean diet also boasts benefits to drinking red wine (in moderation of course). Hey, any diet that says drinking wine is good for you is OK in my books!