It’s very curious. The Mediterranean diet is the most valued type of food worldwide. Actually, that UNESCO declared it as Intangible Heritage of Humanity. However, the Mediterranean countries are abandoning it, breaking with traditions that were deeply rooted in our grandmothers’ times, such as cooking seasonal products every day, planning what was eaten, and everybody around a table.
For this reason, the International Foundation for the Mediterranean Diet (IEMed) is trying to revalue it with initiatives such as a new food pyramid. The main new compared to previous versions are pictographs that represent how to keep a diet based on sustainable guidelines. Tips on how to use local seasonal products, choose methods of environmentally friendly production, preserve traditional recipes and share a table in a social and family environment.
Sport is also a habit of healthy life that should not be missed because it has enormous benefits for both our physical and mental health. In northern European countries, the 80% of the population is physically active, while in the south, with a mild climate, the figure doesn’t reach a 40%.
Regarding the foods, in the base of the pyramid we found water consumption, which should be of six glasses, including herbal teas and coffee. In the next step there are represented the products that should be part of the two main meals of the day: olive oil, fruits, vegetables (variety of colors) and carbohydrates like bread, pasta and rice.
It is recommended to eat between one and two servings of nuts, seeds, olives, garlic, onions and spices for seasoning per day. Dairy products are also part of this step. Vegetable consumption has increased in comparison to the previous version of the pyramid, and now it is recommended at least twice a week.
White meat, fish and shellfish must be part of the diet with two weekly servings; but not red meat and processed meats, whose intake should be much lower. At the top of the pyramid we find the sweets (ice cream, cakes, candies …), which IEMED recommends consuming very sporadically.