A new study that was conducted by Great Britain’s University of Exeter Medical School found that the Mediterranean Diet is not only healthy for the body, but for the mind as well. The team of researchers partnered with the National Institute for Health Research Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care in the South West Peninsula to review twelve pieces of eligible research, including eleven observational studies and one trial.
Nine out of the twelve studies showed that strictly following the Mediterranean Diet lead to better cognitive function, lower rates of cognitive decline and a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Lead researcher Iliana Lourida said, "Mediterranean food is both delicious and nutritious, and our systematic review shows it may help to protect the ageing brain by reducing the risk of dementia. Our review also highlights inconsistencies in the literature and the need for further research. In particular research is needed to clarify the association with mild cognitive impairment and vascular dementia."
The Mediterranean Diet is a lifestyle diet based on the foods that people regularly eat in countries like Greece, southern Italy and Spain. The diet boasts healthy doses of olive oil, legumes, fruits, vegetables, fish, dairy (mostly cheese and yogurt) and moderate wine consumption.
Two of the most popular items from the Mediterranean Diet are the Greek Salad, and fresh hummus. Both recipes are quick, easy and delicious!
Cholesterol: 22 mg
Sodium: 347 mg
3 large ripe tomatoes, chopped
2 cucumbers, peeled and chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
4 teaspoons lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
6 black Greek olives, pitted and sliced
In shallow salad bowl, or on serving platter, combine tomatoes, cucumber, and onion. Sprinkle with oil, lemon juice, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle feta cheese and olives over salad. Serve.
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Sodium: 53 mg
1 (15 ounce) can garbanzo beans,
drained, liquid reserved
2 ounces fresh jalapeno pepper, sliced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 cloves garlic, minced
In a blender or food processor, combine garbanzo beans, jalapeno, cumin, lemon juice, garlic and 1 tablespoon of the reserved bean liquid. Blend until smooth.