So much has been said about the advantages of observing the Mediterranean diet in preventing diseases that are mostly associated with the affluent, for example, heart diseases, overweight, diabetes and cancer. And it is obvious that the strength of this diet is in its major components which are fruits and vegetables, grains, fish and seafood, and olive oil. But are we enlightened about the portion factor of this diet? The number of times you eat and how you eat actually matters a lot.
Even if you tend to observe the most basic principles as it concerns having a complete Mediterranean diet, and you fail to have your meal served in the right proportion, you stand a chance of losing out on the right nutrients. Why is this so?
This is because portions similar to what is observed in the United States can only result to obesity. And obesity happens to be the root cause of so many diseases: heart diseases, cancer and diabetes. It is funny to note that these are the same set of diseases that the Mediterranean plan has protected humans against for a long time. This is only possible because with this diet, people eat and drink in the most appropriate portions.
The next question will be, how do you now determine a normal portion?
Health authorities have already laid down basic rules to help you out in this regards. So you can help yourself by observing the following:
- You should have it at the back of your mind that there is a marked difference between a portion and a serving. While a portion is what you choose to eat at a given point in time, a serving is a standard that has been approved by the US government. Usually your portions are way above the servings, and this is responsible for the extra weight gained.
- Bear also in mind that your children are looking up to you, and as such, you should watch how you eat, just so they can avoid being overweight. A thin child that becomes a thin adult will most likely remain healthier than their weighted counterparts.
You want to get maximum service for money paid. The restaurants are not coming up short in this regards, as they have a formula, which is to have you served with large chunks of food. By the time you are served with these large piece, you start feeling that you are getting the deserved worth of your money.
Unknown to you, you are just trading your wellbeing for some extra calories. You would agree that this is not a brilliant idea. Due to data produced from research, it has been revealed that people who eat out have a higher chance of becoming fat.
Hence, what will be the best thing to do when you find yourself in a fast-food joint?
- Whenever you are presented with that large portion of food, make sure you ask the waiter to save half of the food in a fridge for you.
- There is no harm in sharing your meal with your fellow dinners.
- Be in the habit of not ordering supersized drinks. It will only cost you nothing but unnecessary calories (12 ounce of can of soda is equivalent to 11 teaspoons of sugar and 150 calories. You can do the math for a 32 ounce drink and the result is not healthy at all). “Soft drinks and other sugar-added beverages are moving way faster than white bread in terms on consumption and have now been regarded as the major source of calorie in the diet of the average American”, a statement by Odilia Bermudez, Ph.D. , tufts University.
Finally, this article is only trying to point out that if your aim is to eat healthy by observing the Mediterranean meals, then the issue of portions cannot be taken for granted in any way. And have you ever considered having a vacation in one of the Mediterranean countries like Spain, Italy or Greece? Experiencing the following will be something you do not want to forget in a hurry: the Mediterranean cuisine, the sea, the sun, the fresh salads, the sweetness of the fruits and cheese. Why not have a go at this today and have a firsthand experience of the Mediterranean portions.