What is the Mediterranean Diet?
The Mediterranean diet follows the basics of healthy eating, with just one or two variations. It includes a high intake of plant-based proteins such as nuts, lentils, beans and whole grains. Fatty fish, and other good fats such as olive oil, are also included.
The cooking methods are characterised by the traditional style of the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea.
Eating more vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans and nuts, is the central key to this diet, and it makes no difference which specific foods you choose. How you flavour your food, or what spices you choose, is also your choice.
The diet demands a low intake of refined foods such as white bread, rolls, white rice, etc, as well as sugary items, and red meat.
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Does the Mediterranean diet lower your risk of cancer?
Several intensive studies have linked the Mediterranean style of eating to a lower all-round cancer risk.
A major new research project funded by the World Cancer Research Fund, published some interesting results regarding breast cancer. The study indicated that that those who closely followed the Mediterranean diet had a 40 percent reduced risk of breast cancer. The results were particularly successful in the case of estrogen-receptor negative cancers, which means that estrogen, and not progesterone, is supporting the growth and spread of cancer cells.
Studies further showed that breast cancer is one of the most common cancers worldwide, with the UK alone reporting more than 53,000 new cases each year.
According to further studies, it was revealed that the risk of prostate cancer may also be lowered by 30% when following a Mediterranean style eating plan. It was noted that Greek men have a very low risk for prostate cancer, while prostate cancer is the second highest cause of cancer deaths among American men.
The consensus among researchers is that the Mediterranean diet plays a major role in reducing the risk of several cancers, and is especially useful in preventing dangerous breast and prostate cancers.
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