Mediterranean diet, fact or fiction?

Thursday, January 5th, 2017

Recent studies have shown that a Mediterranean diet supplemented with either olive oil or nuts was more beneficial in preventing breast cancer compared to a low fat diet, without advising what type of fats to use. 

The rationale for the influence of olive oil on cancer risk is that oil has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties with it polyphenols content.  Keep in mind that 1 table spoon of oil is equivalent in calories to 1 table spoon of mayonnaise or butter; however, fat in oil consists mainly of the GOOD UNSATURATED one. 

Key components of the Mediterranean diet:

  • Eating primarily plant-based foods: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts 
  • Replacing butter with healthy fats such as olive oil and canola oil 
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Limiting red meat 
  • Using herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods

By Ms. Ayla Coussa

Clinical Dietitian