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Did you know that May is Mediterranean Diet Month? Learn simple steps to eating the Med Way and download two delicious Greek recipes to help get you started!

Spanakopita Pie
If there were a simple diet plan that would make you less likely to develop heart disease, lower your blood pressure and cholesterol, and help prevent diabetes and certain cancers, would you follow it? If your answer is yes, then good news! The Mediterranean Diet, referred to as the world’s healthiest diet, has been shown to promote health and decrease the risk of many chronic diseases.

May is recognized as International Mediterranean Diet Month (also known as Med Month). This month-long celebration creates awareness of the delicious foods and health benefits associated with the Mediterranean-style of eating.

Here are a few simple steps to adopting a Mediterranean-style eating pattern:

  1. Change your proteinReplace some of the meat of your diet with plant proteins such as beans, nuts, and seeds often; consume fish two to three times per week; choose white-meat poultry such as turkey or chicken; limit red meat and always choose lean; and limit or eliminate processed meats.
  2. Swap your fatsReplace solid fats such as butter or margarine with olive oil or canola oil.
  3. Eat more fruits and vegetables — Get at least five servings (cups) of fruits and vegetables per day. Choose a variety of colors, increasing berries and dark green leafy vegetables.
  4. Snack on nuts and seeds — Choose at least three ounces of nuts and seeds per week within your calorie budget.
  5. Make your grains whole — Choose whole grain foods such as oatmeal, quinoa, brown rice and popcorn. When shopping for bread or pasta look for “whole” in the first ingredient on the ingredient list.
  6. Rethink your sweets — Limit sugar intake and choose no more than three servings per week of high-sugared foods and drinks.

Eating the Med Way is not only healthy, it is also delicious and satisfying. Try this tasty recipe for Spanakopita Pie (a savory Greek pastry) and serve it with a side of Greek Salad. You won’t be disappointed!

Did you know Extension offers hands-on Mediterranean Diet Cooking Schools? Contact me if you’re interested in learning more tips and methods for cooking like a Mediterranean. Happy Med Month!