The Mediterranean Diet is easy to work in to a typical American diet with a few simple steps. Even if you are not completely adhering to the Med Diet, some simple changes can help you get the benefits.
1) Gradually replace butter and margarine with olive oil. This helps you switch from saturated fats (bad fats) to monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs; good fats).
Baking Conversion Rule of Thumb: Butter to Olive Oil ratio is 1 : 0.75 (for example 1 tsp of butter for a recipe would be 3/4 tsp of olive oil)
2) Slowly decrease portion sizes of meat until you are only eating meat once a day or less. Use meat for flavoring or in small amounts. This also helps decrease the saturated fat in your diet.
3) Replace your usual dessert with sweet fruit. The habit of finishing meals with something sweet can be made healthier with fruit rather than sugary cakes or cookies.
4) Drink wine rather than other types of alcohol and only in small amounts or with meals. Remember that one serving size of wine is only 4 ounces.
5) Eat seafood twice weekly. Seafood is full of omega-3 fatty acids (PUFAs; good fats) rather than saturated fats.
6) Choose lean protein sources like seafood, poultry, and beans over red meat.
Ahead are a few recipes that use the Mediterranean Diet as their inspiration. There are many more recipes with a simple Google search online.
Mediterranean Style Grilled Salmon:
Zucchini, Fennel, and White Bean Pasta
Pasta alle Erbe