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August 30, 2011 at 10:48 AMComments: 0 Faves: 0

The Mediterranean Diet: Lunch Time

By Jessica Corwin MPH RDN More Blogs by This Author

Registered dietitian Jessica Butcher speaks on how the Mediterranean Diet can really be a healthier/tastier alternative to a fast food lunch.
Host, Gerry Barnaby - Hey, what’s happenin’, Barnaby here.  It’s lunch time and that means a big problem for most of us because we use that lunch hour to go and have really bad food which makes us just sleepy for the rest of the day and we lose the battle of the bulge.  But in another moment, we’re going to be talking about the Mediterranean Diet with Registered Dietician, Jessica Butcher.  So, a better diet?
Health Coach, Jessica Butcher, RD - A much better diet.  The Mediterranean Diet is very rich in monounsaturated healthy fats which you can see in our salad.  We have some very heart healthy olives.  And one of the dressings they use rather than loading that with saturated fat, trans fat maybe like a processed ranch dressing, they’d rather use olive oil or maybe just some vinegar and lemon juice. 
Barnaby – What kind of diet is this that we speak of heavy, fatty things like, not just one olive but cousin olives over here and also cheese.  I mean this doesn’t look like your average diet.  But that’s not the point of the Mediterranean Diet, is it?
Jessica – It isn’t.  The Mediterranean Diet, they get almost 35 or 40 percent of all their calories right from fat.  So it’s definitely richer in fat but that helps to keep you satisfied.  It makes you feel, your hunger, go away.  Because that fat, I mean, you don’t really feel deprived by any means on this diet.
Barnaby – And when we mention the cheese, you can see there’s just a smidgeon of cheese right there.  It’s not just smacked like you’d see on lasagna or something.  So what’s the thought behind just a little bit of cheese?
Jessica – Exactly.  Um, people in the Mediterranean region, they view cheese more as a condiment for the meal.  Whereas we look at it as the main portion, the main course of that meal.  With the cheese, they’d rather look for the quality vs the quantity.  Whereas we’d maybe pile on a maybe not so flavorful cheese, they’re only going to need to use a little bit of flavorful cheese.  And the feta cheese in this example of this salad is a great and very rich option.
Barnaby – Alrightie.  But much as the same with Chinese food where you’re hungry about an hour after the meal, when you have just a salad, there are other things you can pair up  - like some hummus, some nuts and possibly some flatbread.  All good choices in the Mediterranean Diet?
Jessica – They’d be great.  And even with the salad, you can pair it to make a more complete lunch by adding some whole grain bread or some whole grain pita bread, dipping it right with your hummus.  And hummus, all that is, is some healthy chickpeas, very rich in fiber, mixed and pureed with olive oil.  So it’s certainly a very great option for your heart and certainly makes you feel full. 
Barnaby – Excellent.  Well, I’ll tell you what.  It’s all about the Mediterranean Diet because I’m falling in love with this.  It has all the flavor, some good mouth feel, the great fats that we love but they’re good for you.  And so we’re going to be talking much more about this in ensuing HelloLife moments because, again, we are all about matching your commitment to a healthy lifestyle.

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