Delicious, simple, and slimming, the Mediterranean Diet is a fantastic way to eat healthy meals while enjoying a rich variety of tasty ingredients. Enjoy May’s rising temps by stocking up on fresh ingredients for Mediterranean Diet Month. Studies have proven the Mediterranean diet to reduce heart attack and stroke risk and lower LDL cholesterol. Plus, a recent study shows that the Mediterranean diet reduces cognitive impairment as people age. If that’s not enough motivation, check out our list of Mediterranean heart diet staples and the savory recipes you can prepare in a flash!

Enjoy bread, pasta, and rice, but stick to whole grain varieties. The toothsome feel of whole grains, paired with olive oil and fresh veggies, will keep your energy up, your weight loss goals in check, and your belly feeling full.arthritis and heart disease ad

Substitute olive oil in place of butter to maximize heart heath. Olive oil reduces bad cholesterol, and can be used to replace butter on bread, and in marinades, sautees, and sauces. Use it in moderation to see real health benefits and to moderate your caloric intake.

Legumes are packed with both protein and fiber, keeping your blood sugar steady and reducing hunger. Add chick peas or lentils to a lunch salad to stay satisfied longer, or toss some pine nuts or walnuts into your pasta at dinner.

Fish are loaded with healthy fats, and can be prepared as a low-calorie main course. For optimum health benefits, pan-sear scallops in olive oil, grill salmon on cedar plank on your charcoal or gas grill, or broil mackerel for its omega-3 fatty acids.

Fresh vegetables are an essential part of the Mediterranean diet. Throw some grape tomatoes with olive oil, basil, and garlic into a pan, letting them cook down into an easy sauce for pasta. Gather your favorite peppers and squashes and toss them in a pan with olive oil and red pepper flakes for a spicy stir-fry. Or combine greens as a side salad topped with a bit of lemon juice, olive oil, and garlic.

Try these slimming, heart-healthy recipes for a month. By the end of Mediterranean Diet Month, you’ll have adopted excellent eating habits that are tasty and filling enough to make it into your daily diet routine for years to come. You’ll see the benefits on the scale and at your next visit to the doctor!

If you liked this article, check these out: