What is the Mediterranean diet?

The traditional Mediterranean diet is based on foods available in countries that border the Mediterranean Sea. The foundation for this healthy diet includes

  • an abundance of plant foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and legumes, which are minimally processed, seasonally fresh, and grown locally
  • olive oil as the principal source of fat
  • cheese and yogurt, consumed daily in low to moderate amounts
  • fish and poultry, consumed in low to moderate amounts a few times a week
  • red meat, consumed infrequently and in small amounts
  • fresh fruit for dessert, with sweets containing added sugars or honey eaten only a few times each week

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