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Mediterranean Diet May Help Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

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Mediterranean Diet

An Estimated 86 Million Americans Are At Risk For Type 2 Diabetes

But nearly 90 percent of them don’t know it.

Doctors say adhering to a Mediterranean diet may help to reverse your risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes.

The Mediterranean diet, which is especially popular from Spain and Italy to Greece and the Middle East, largely focuses on seasonal fruits and vegetables.

“It’s dark leafy greens, freshly foraged greens in all different varieties… like kale and collards and spinach and chard,” said Dahlia Shaaban, founder of Washington, D.C.-based Live Deliciously.

The majority of foods in a Mediterranean diet do come from plants, but Shaaban says to go for fish or lean proteins twice per week. Salmon and tuna, for example, contain Omega 3 Fatty Acids which promote heart and brain health.

“So you can think of crowding out your plate with more plant-based foods, then enjoying meat here and there,” explained Shaaban.

 

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Beans, Nuts & Whole Grains Are Everyday Staples In A Mediterranean Meal

“The grain is something you can hold onto,” said Shaaban. “Brown rice, farro, wide rice, quinoa, bulgur or cracked wheat. The most common beans you find in the Mediterranean are: lentils, chickpeas, fava beans, black eyed peas.”

The American Diabetes Association suggests using olive oil to cook instead of butter or margarine. That can help to lower cholesterol levels. And when it comes to seasoning, herbs, spices and citrus juice are better options than salt.

Finally, limit alcohol and sugar—and you’ve got the perfect blend of health-conscious choices for people managing diabetes.

“It’s not just a diet, it’s a lifestyle,” said Shaaban.

For Mediterranean-inspired recipes, visit the Live Deliciously and Live Deliciously Tribe Facebook pages.

 

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