May is the time to celebrate National Mediterranean Diet Month, based on the healthy diets of Greece, Crete and Southern Italy.
The tradition of celebrating the Mediterranean Diet was launched four years ago by Oldways, to honor the the foods, flavors and lifestyle of the Mediterranean, which contributes one of the healthiest diets in the world.
Oldways has been instrumental in promoting the health benefits of the Mediteranean diet since the 1990's, presenting the diet of Greece as the ideal diet for Americans. In conjunction with its May celebrations Oldways is further promoting the benefits of the Greek diet with handy downloads such as "A tip a day for the month of May" to make every day Mediterranean.
Food lovers can be tempted to indulge in a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, olives and olive oil, nuts and grains, fish and herbs, water and wine. The Hellas Ministry of Rural Food and Development also gives full details of the benefits of the Mediterranean diet, encouraging use of a diet that has been proven to result in lower instances of mortality from heart disease and cancer.
The recommended diet emulates the ideal food intake of the late 1950's rather than the current diet which has moved towards more packaged foods, as more of the population lives in urban areas. Currently Greece is hoping to encourage a move back towards more healthy eating as incidences of obesity rise. Indeed the Greek Ministry states that the rise in more typical Western diseases over the last three decades "can be considered as evidence that the model diet... closely approximates the traditional Greek diet of the 50's."
Those tempted to emulate the delicously healthy Mediterranean diet during its celebratory month can find more tips at the Food and Nutrition Magazine and Oldways.