Mediterranean Diet Food List – Let’s Start Shopping!

The Mediterranean diet food list is derived from the eating habits of the Mediterranean people, namely those who live in Spain, France, Tunisia, Lebanon, Morocco, Greece and Italy. The diet of these people has remained pretty much unchanged for thousands of years. They are renowned for their consumption of healthy foods. The Mediterranean diet contains many delicious foods. Perhaps this is the reason for the diet becoming so popular these days, along with the fact that it is so healthy. When you adopt the Mediterranean diet, you greatly increase your chances of living a healthy life.

According to heart disease death stats there were almost 103 deaths per 100,000 population caused by heart disease worldwide. In the US that figure was 106 per 100,000, The UK had 122 deaths per 100,000 and Australia had 110 deaths per 100,000. Interestingly, four out of the six LOWEST heart disease death rates were from Mediterranean countries; France: 39.8 deaths per 100,000, Spain: 53.8 deaths per 100,000, Italy: 65.2 deaths per 100,000 and Greece: 68.8 deaths per 100,000. This makes the average for these four countries 56.9 deaths per 100,000 which is just over half the wordwide figure. Impressive isn’t it? Makes you wonder, what are they doing right?

But what foods will you find in a Mediterranean diet Food List?

Interestingly, the Mediterranean diet food list does not only contain food, it also contains beverages. Beverages, specifically water and wine, are an important part of the Mediterranean diet. People in the Mediterranean generally drink a glass of wine with dinner (though they rarely consume more than this). Even young children are permitted to a few sips of wine with dinner. Wine is high in antioxidants so this has health benefits as long as it is consumed in moderation.

The Mediterranean diet food list focuses on fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds. It is also high in monounsaturated fat. This monounsaturated fat comes primarily from olive oil. One of the reasons for good health statistics is that the Mediterranean diet is VERY low in saturated fats. They only eat red meat a couple of times per month and don’t consume as much dairy as we do in western society. Their main source of protein comes from fish, with only smaller amounts of dairy, poultry and red meat.

The Mediterranean diet food list. Let’s go shopping!

Vegetables

Artichokes, beets, brussel sprouts, carrots, celeriac, collard, dandelion greens, fennel, leeks, lettuce, mache, mustard greens, Okra, Peas, Potatoes, Purslane, rutabaga (turnip), shallots, sweet potatoes (yams), zucchini, swede, scallions (spring onions), radishes, pumpkin, peppers (red, green, yellow, orange), Onions (red, brown and white), nettles, mushrooms, lettuce, kale, eggplant (aubergine), cucumber, chicory, celery, cabbage, broccoli, Arugula (rocket).

Fruits

Avocado, tomatoes, apples, tangerines, apricots, strawberries, cherries, pomegranates, clementine mandarines, pears, dates, peaches, figs, olives, grapefruit, nectarines, grapes, melons and oranges

Grains

Whole grain breads, barley, millet, oats, rice, polenta, bulgur, couscous, buckwheat, durum, wheatberries and faro.

Fish and Seafood

Yellowtail, abalone, clams, cockles, crab, lobster, flounder, eel, octopus, squid (calamari), oysters, mussels, mackerel, tilapia, salmon, sea bass, tuna, sardines, whelk and shrimp

Poultry and Eggs

Chicken, guinea fowl, duck, chicken eggs, duck eggs, quail eggs.

Cheese and Yogurt

Brie, feta (fetta), Corvo, chevre, ricotta, parmigiana-reggiano, manchego, pecorino, haloumi, Greek yogurt and flavored yogurt.

Nuts and Seeds

Almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pine nuts, pistachio, sesame seeds (tahini) and walnuts

Legumes

Cannellini, chickpeas, fava (broadbeans), kidney, green beans, lentils and split peas.

Herbs and Spices

Anise, zatar spice mix, chillies, basil, garlic, fennel, bay leaf, clove, lavender, cumin, oregano, mint, marjoram, sage, pul biber (also known as halaby pepper, aleppo pepper and flake pepper), parsley, rosemary, savory, thyme, sumac and tarragon

Meats

Pork, beef, lamb, mutton and goat.

Sweets

Creme caramel, baklava, tiramisu, sorbet, biscotti, chocolate, chocolate mousse, Turkish delight, kunefe, gelato and fruit tarts.

Water and Wine

People of the Mediterranean generally drink around six glasses of water per day plus 1-2 glasses of red wine (one glass each with lunch and dinner).

So there you have it, your Mediterranean diet food list. Now you know what to aim for the next time you go grocery shopping.