The beautiful coastal town of Acciaroli located in Italy had been in the news for its high percentage of resident centenarians. All of us want a long and healthy life, and it seems like the people of Acciaroli found the secret to longevity long time ago. For every ten inhabitants there is at least one person who is hundred years old or above. Is it something of a mystery? How do they do it? You must have heard, ‘you are what you eat’. Their secret is a healthy and nutritious Mediterranean diet, regular exercise and lots of sex.
What is so special about Mediterranean diet?
The Mediterranean diet includes plenty of fruits and vegetables, lots of carbohydrates and fish, and everything the people of Acciaroli eat is organic. Mediterranean food differs by region and is fundamentally based on fruits, vegetables, beans, cereal grains, nuts, fish and olive oil. You can easily make your diet Mediterranean style by eating plenty of starchy foods like pasta and bread, organic fruits and vegetables. Eat less red meat and more fish and add fresh vegetables, don’t forget to add extra virgin olive oil and Rosemary.
These days the Mediterranean Diet is also used for weight loss.
Main Ingredients / Food list of the Mediterranean Diet
So what goes into this diet? Here are the main ingredients that make up the Mediterranean Diet.
Rosemary is considered a major reason for the health and longevity of Acciarolians. Rosemary looks like a small twig from a perennial tree, it has a pleasing aroma, pine-like fragrance and a unique flavor. You will find Rosemary in almost every dish that’s cooked in this town. Salmon and tuna dishes are incomplete without this herb; the delightful fragrance is associated with good food, which means good health. Rosemary contains ‘super-food’ ingredients that are highly beneficial for your body’s circulation and immune system, and digestion. It also has anti-inflammatory compounds that help in reducing asthma attacks. It is also responsible for increasing blood flow to the brain, boosting concentration.
We recommend that you add Rosemary to your dishes, and make them delicious and healthy.
2. Choose healthy fats (like Olive Oil)
Olives and olive oil are foundations of Mediterranean diet, four to six servings per day (a serving can be one tablespoon of olive oil or 5 olives). Olive oil adds healthy mono-unsaturated fats and plant compounds called polyphenols to your system, improving the overall function of the body. In addition, olive oil is known to have anti-aging effects.
3. Lots of fruit and vegetables
Fresh and organic, non-starchy fruits and vegetables are the star of this diet. Eat 5 to 10 servings a day, one cup raw equals one serving or a half cup cooked. Always go for fresh and organic.
4. Pick seeds, nuts, and legumes
Seeds and nuts are a great source of protein and fiber; these also provide antioxidants and healthy fats to your body. Eat a serving of legumes, 1/2 a cup, found in lentil soup or hummus at least two times a week and a small portion of nuts daily about 1 tablespoon or 10 to 12 walnuts or almonds.
5. Focus on fish and eggs
Aim to eat 150 to 200 grams of fish twice or thrice a week. Eggs should also be on your menu as they are a great source of proteins. You can mix them with vegetables or have a boiled egg every day, especially in breakfast. Meat and chicken should also be a part of your diet but try to have only organic food.
Have cultured milk, it’s a lot easier to digest and delivers beneficial bacteria that enhance the digestive system. Enjoy one to three servings daily, a serving is 1 cup of milk or yogurt.
6. Pasta, rice or bread
Whole grains are the best, try a pasta made from quinoa or have four small portions daily of whole wheat bread. And always eat grains with healthy protein and fats. Include fermented or sprouted grains for stress-free digestion and healthier nutrient absorption. Or look for creative ways to swap out grains like using spaghetti squash in place of noodles.
7. Add herbs and spices
Herbs and spices are full of plant compounds with inflammation fighting effects and antioxidants.
So, will the Mediterranean diet make you live to 100 years?
The Mediterranean diet is nothing but a variety of different combination of the above super-foods. But a healthy diet alone will not able to cross the 100-years mark. The people of Acciaroli are physically very active; most of them spend hours doing gardening every day, growing their own food. Gardening relieves stress, exercises the body and as a result you get good high quality food.
Remember that an active body quickly absorbs nutrients from food, so combine exercise with the miracle Mediterranean diet, fight off stress with a hobby such as gardening, have sex regularly and we are sure that you will also become a centenarian.