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The Mediterranean Diet: Newly Revised and Updatedby Marissa Cloutier
Synopses & Reviews
Chapter One Mediterranean Magic
Imagine yourself sitting in a sun-drenched outdoor café on the banks of the Greek Mediterranean shore. The vast turquoise sea meets the brilliant blue sky, and everything around you seems influenced by sea and sky, from the aquamarine-painted tables and chairs of the café to the foamy-white buildings and small shops jutting out over the seawall where the Mediterranean laps and splashes. The warm sun on your shoulders and the cool sea breeze on your face enhance the spectacular view, as the fragrance of white flowers scaling a peach-colored trellis above your table mingles with the smells of salt and sea.You feel yourself relaxing into your chair as you are gently serenaded by the musical dialect around you. You recall your morning trek across the vast white beaches, and images of ancient Greece envelop you. You can almost envision Socrates walking along the shoreline with tall Greek ships sailing in the far distance, the ruins whole, the early blossoming of Western civilization. Poseidon, that great god of the sea, is smiling at you, amused to see how easily the stresses of daily life have suddenly melted away.
Ah, the magical Mediterranean. With all its glorious old-worldliness, you feel connected with history. You feel completely at peace. And just when you think it couldn't get any better, you are awakened from your relaxed bliss by a waiter who brings you a bowl of fragrant, lemony soup the color of the sun, followed by a steaming plate of sea bass infused with oregano, olive oil, and lemon, surrounded by colorful roasted vegetables grown on the rolling hills just behind you.
With each bite you are catapulted further into theheaven that surrounds you. You cannot help but savor every mouthful. You've never tasted food so fresh, so wholesome. You feel renewed, even healed, down to your very soul.Indeed, the sensual power of the Mediterranean cannot be ignored. Anyone who has traveled to this area cannot forget its beauty, its history, and its charm. Sun and sea, relaxed lifestyle, and miraculous food. These things are enough to draw anyone to the shores of the Mediterranean. Yet, the seductive Mediterranean climate, cuisine, and way of life aren't the only reasons to focus on this region's approach to eating. Study after study has revealed that people eating a traditional Mediterranean diet are generally healthier, longer-lived, and with a lower incidence of chronic diseases — particularly coronary artery disease — than people in other parts of the world.
The potential health benefits inherent in eating and living in the traditional Mediterranean way are the impetus for writing this book. Is it really possible to eat so well, savoring and relishing delicious food, and at the same time increase our wellness? In fact, it is possible, and also surprisingly easy to accomplish. We need only look to the Mediterranean lands of Greece, Italy, France, Spain, Turkey, North Africa, and the Middle East. The Mediterranean Region
The Mediterranean region encompasses all the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, from the Strait of Gibraltar separating the rocky cliffs and crags of southern Spain and the seaport of Tangier in mountainous northern Morocco, to the Mediterranean's far western reaches along the shores of the Middle East. Between these extremes lies a broad sampling of European, Middle Eastern, andAfrican countries, all Mediterranean yet each unique in culture and character: pastoral southern France with its orange groves, vineyards, and rolling hills; scenic Italy with its snowy peaks and sultry beaches; the former Yugoslavia with its dramatic coastline; the tiny yet sensationally mountainous Albania; historical Greece with its hazy, sea-infused ambience and its scattering of islands; geologically volatile Turkey; the Middle Eastern countries of Syria, Lebanon, and Israel, with their coastal planes backed by a sudden rise of mountains; and then, returning east, the northern ends of Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, and back to Morocco, an African panoply of cliffs, peaks, ports, plateaus, and scorching sands.
Surely such a vast array of countries and cultures must dine on an equally vast assortment of foods. Although each country bordering the Mediterranean Sea does indeed have its unique culinary characteristics, the region maintains many common, and many more mutually influenced ingredients, recipes, and cooking techniques. Pasta may come in the form of ziti in Italy and couscous in Morocco, but it is still pasta. Not insignificantly, Mediterranean countries also share an attitude toward food and how it should be eaten. The Evolution of a Shared Cuisine
The magnificent diet of the Mediterranean region has been evolving for thousands of years. The history of the region coupled with its distinct (though widely various) climate and the pervasive influence of the sea has shaped the choice of foods and the types of cooking so characteristic of traditional Mediterranean culture. Bread, olive oil, and wine — which continue to play a significant role in the Mediterranean diettoday — accompanied meals in ancient times. The cultivated vegetables and other plant-based foods so central to the diet can be traced back to Neolithic times. According to archeological evidence and depictions and descriptions of food and meals in the art and literature of ancient Greek and Roman civilizations, ancient populations probably relied primarily on plant foods, with only occasional indulgence in meat and seafood.
More recent studies of the Mediterranean diet, from the 1950s and 1960s, reveal eating habits and preferences similar to the ancient diet: a primarily plant food based diet that included minimal processing, whole grains, olive oil as the primary fat source, and animal products (with the exception of cheese in some areas and yogurt in some areas) consumed only a few times per month. The groundbreaking Rockefeller Foundation study of the Cretan diet around 1950 stated that olives, cereal grains, pulses, wild greens and herbs, and fruits, together with limited quantities of goat meat and milk, game, and fish have remained the basic Cretan foods for forty centuries . . . no meal was complete without bread . . . and Olives and olive oil contributed heavily to the energy intake. This study, originally undertaken to determine how the people of Greece could improve their diets after World War II, concluded that the diet couldn't get much better.
DISCOVER THE BENEFITS OF EATING THE MEDITERRANEAN WAY
Scientists and researchers have discovered that traditional Mediterranean cuisine is one of the most healthful, nutritious diets in the world — one that can help you live longer and enjoy far lower rates of coronary heart disease and other chronic conditions, including diabetes and cancer.
This essential book invites you into the world of this sun-drenched, succulent, and irresistibly delicious way of eating, providing:
-- In-depth nutritional information about each food category
-- A 7-day eating plan filled with savory meals
-- A 3-day exercise plan to get you started
-- Luscious soup-to-nut recipes for such mouth-watering delights as Moroccan vegetable stew, eggplant Parmesan, French cassoulet, and homemade custard
-- Ways to prepare dishes that satisfy your taste buds and help you lose weight too!
Improve your health, well-being, longevity, and quality of life with
THE MEDITERRANEAN DIET
This essential book is the perfect introduction to traditional Mediterranean cuisine that is one of the most healthful, nutritious diets that can lead to lower rates of coronary heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Provides in-depth nutritional information, a 7-day eating plan filled with savory meals, and a 3-day exercise plan.
An essential diet and lifestyle program from the Mediterranean regionandndash;andndash;where some of the healthiest, leanest people in the world live. Enjoy pastas, olives, wine, fruit, and delicious vegetablesandndash;andndash;all while lowering your weight and risk for heart disease!
It has been known for a long time that people who live in Mediterranean countries, and who eat a diet that gets its fat mainly from olive oil and features a variety of fruits and vegetables, have lower rates of heart disease and are generally slimmer than people who live in Northern Europe, where the diet features foods with more animal fat. You can build your diet from a base of grains, use olive oil for cooking, enjoy a variety of vegetables every day, and lower your salt intake on a Mediterranean dietandndash;andndash;while eating delicious foods and lowering your risk for heart disease. THE MEDITERRANEAN DIETprovides the nutritional information and guidelines that introduce you to the Mediterranean cuisine and lifestyle. With recipes and a 7andndash;day program to get you started, this book provides an excellent introduction to losing weight and living right the Mediterranean way.
Scientists have discovered that traditional Mediterranean cuisine is one of the most healthful, nutritious diets in the world—one that can help everyone lose weight and enjoy lower rates of coronary heart disease and other chronic conditions, including diabetes and cancer. From tasty Moroccan vegetable stew to rosemary focaccia, from eggplant parmesan to lemon almond cake, The Mediterranean Diet offers a program that will make dieters everywhere—and food lovers in general—rejoice.
Lose weight and worry with every delicious meal!
About the Author
Marissa Cloutier, MS, RD, is a registered dietitian with a master of science degree in human nutrition and metabolism from Boston University. She is a food/nutrition instructor at Briarwood College, as well as a biology and anatomy/physiology instructor at Hillyer College. She was recently admitted into the Ph.D. program at the University of Connecticut in the field of nutrition. She is an expert co-author, with Eve Adamson and Deborah S. Romaine, of Beef Busters: Less Beef, Better Health!
Eve Adamson has authored or coauthored more than forty books, including The Mediterranean Diet. She lives with her family in Iowa City, where she cooks, gardens, and writes about food and holistic health.
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