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Scientific research leaves no doubt: the Mediterranean diet is a precious ally for our health. Extra virgin olive oil, legumes, fruits, vegetables, fish have beneficial properties that contribute to longevity and the defense of our body against many diseases.
The Mediterranean diet, also called the Cretan diet or Mediterranean diet, is a traditional healthy eating practice in many countries of the Mediterranean basin. Of course, there are some differences from one country to another in the Mediterranean, related to the production, the different customs and traditions of each country.
The Seven Countries Study began at the end of the 1940s in the United States, inspired and created by the famous Professor Ansel Keys, who was the first exponent of the "diet-heart" connection, but also that between cholesterol and coronary heart disease.
The survey of the seven countries gave the scientific community - not the scientific community - a famous term. That of the “Mediterranean diet”. The survey covered Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Yugoslavia, Finland and Japan.
The result of the research was that the population of Crete was found to have the lowest mortality from coronary heart disease compared to all others. This is why it was originally called the “Cretan diet” or healthy diet.
In 1993, the International Conference on the Mediterranean Diet decided what it would consider a healthy and traditional Mediterranean diet and in 1995, the "Mediterranean Diet Pyramid" was created.
The “Mediterranean diet” was inscribed on November 16, 2010 on the representative list of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity by UNESCO at the request of Greece, Italy, Spain and Morocco. In 2013, three other countries joined the registration: Cyprus, Croatia and Portugal.
The Mediterranean diet has a meal plan shaped in the form of a pyramid in order to determine for each type of food the required amount of consumption in monthly, weekly and daily frequencies.
The pyramid at its base includes foods that should be eaten daily and in significant amounts, while at the top are foods that should not be eaten often and in smaller amounts.
Starting from the base of the pyramid, it is necessary to consume:
The advantages of applying the standard of the Mediterranean diet are manifold. Specifically: