If having Greek relatives has taught me anything, it’s the importance of simple tasty food. Take some olives, tomatoes, oregano, feta, cucumber, red onion and peppers, splash with a dash of olive oil and you suddenly have a Greek salad in no time.
Hailed as a way of living, rather than a fad or diet, the ‘Mediterranean diet’ is rich in fish, healthy fats and whole grains – all of which help fight heart disease and dementia, among other benefits.
So, what can we learn from our European friends? Here’s six things for you to digest..
Choose Healthy Fats
Olive oil, olives, avocado, nuts and seeds are all healthy fats our Mediterranean friends eat regularly.
Fruit and Veg
While fruit and vegetables seem to always taste better in hot climates, an organic shop may have a great variety to enjoy. It’s said that eating a variety of fruit and veg in different colours is a great way to boost antioxidants and vitamins. A simple way to incorporate this into your diet is by fruit platters for desserts, starting the day with morning smoothies and even freezing homemade watermelon ice-pops!
Swap Snacks For Seeds
Our European friends are big fans of nuts and seeds, which are a great source of fibre and protein. You can be creative too – homemade hummus is a delicious way to enjoy otherwise boring chickpeas.
Swap Butter For Olive Oil
Olive oil is loaded with monounsaturated fats which are great for your heart. Use olive oil as your main source for cooking and baking and ditch the butter.
If you’ve ever had Greek coffee, you know it will knock your socks off! However, an espresso after a meal can help with digestion.
Make It a Family Experience
In parts of Europe, like Spain and Greece, mealtimes are considered family time. It’s said that this is a better way to enjoy eating, since you’re likely to eat slower and appreciate your meal more.