5 Ways to Make Your Plate More Mediterranean, With Pistachios

TUESDAY, JUNE 14, 2016

5 Ways to Make Your Plate More Mediterranean, With Pistachios

The Mediterranean Diet reflects a traditional eating pattern found in countries of the Mediterranean region of Europe. Research has shown several health benefits linked to the Mediterranean style of eating, including heart health.[i] The Mediterranean-style of eating emphasizes plant-based foods that are high in fiber like fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans and seeds as well as good fats found in olive oil, nuts and salmon. With 3 grams of fiber and healthy mono- and poly-unsaturated fats, pistachios are a natural fit.

While the Mediterranean Diet is inspired by foods found near the Mediterranean Sea, you don’t have to travel any farther than your kitchen to discover its delicious flavors and enjoy the health benefits. Here are five ways you can make your plate more Mediterranean today!

  1. Focus on good fats, like those found in nuts, olive oil and avocados. Snack on a handful of pistachios instead of chips or pretzels, or spread avocado on your sandwich instead of mayonnaise.

    How Pistachios Fit: For the same number of calories, you’ll get 49 pistachios compared to just 15 potato chips.  That’s three times as many pieces per serving, plus three times the protein and fiber.
  2. Be bold! Choose brightly colored foods like ruby red pomegranates, deep purple cabbages and rich leafy greens. These colorful, plant-based foods are full of good nutrition including vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

    How Pistachios Fit: Antioxidants aren’t just for fruits and veggies! Pistachios’ unique green and purple colors comes from the antioxidant lutein.
  3.  Get your protein the Mediterranean way. Aim to eat fatty fish like salmon or tuna at least once each week. And don’t forget about plant-based proteins! Lentils, nuts, and whole grains are all delicious plant-based sources of protein that also contain a healthy amount of fiber.

    How Pistachios Fit: Pistachios are one of the tree nuts highest in fiber and protein, and they make a great substitute for ground beef in burgers, pasta, or stir fries.
  4. Mindfulness. A big part of the Mediterranean Diet is nourishing your body and mind. Mindful eating encourages you to eat slower and more thoughtfully without restricting your diet. Whether it is journaling, meditation or simply munching more mindfully, choose the strategy that will resonate with you and you’ll be on your way to a better overall well being.

    How Pistachios Fit: Snacking on in-shell pistachios in the midst of a stressful day may ultimately slow you down—allowing you to savor each bite and appreciate the little moments!
  5. Give your snack a Mediterranean Makeover. Snack time is an easy way to ease into a more Mediterranean eating pattern without having to reinvent your routine. Try these nourishing spins on snacking classics:

Pistachio table

 

[i] Estruch R, Ros E, Salas-Salvadó J, et al. Primary prevention of cardiovascular disease with a Mediterranean diet.

N Engl J Med. 2013; 368:1279-1290.

[ii] Republished with permission from Rocket Fuel by Matt Kadey, RD. Check out this power-packed recipe, and others in Matt’s new book, “Rocket Fuel”, out this May! Learn more at velopress.com/rocketfuel.