If you’re a fan of avocado toast, dipping bread in olive oil, or just snacking on olives, then National Mediterranean Diet Month in May is for you. If you’ve never tried these foods, perhaps May is your time to branch out. Created in 2009, National Mediterranean Diet Month highlights the health benefits of this particular way of eating. So go ahead — dip those carrots in hummus and sprinkle your salad with feta cheese. Enjoy National Mediterranean Diet Month all May long.
NATIONAL MEDITERRANEAN DIET MONTH ACTIVITIES
- Explore new cuisinesBuy Mediterranean Diet cookbooks or skim Google recipes — and attempt to make dishes filled with foods you’ve never tried.
- Start a 30-day challengeWant to break bad eating habits and build healthier ones? Challenge yourself to try one new food, condiment, or spice every week. You can even get family and friends in on the action.
- Throw a Mediterranean-inspired dinner partyYou can impress your guests by offering a variety of olives, cheeses, and olive oils (for dipping bread), as well as preparing flavorful salads, fish and chicken. Plus, have fun decorating your space with Mediterranean-themed décor — think colors of the land and sea. Also, try rustic clay plates, mosaic-patterned tiles, and Moroccan-inspired fabrics.
4 DELICIOUS DETAILS ABOUT OLIVE OIL
- It has serious health benefitsOlive oil is filled with many antioxidants, such as carotenoids and oleuropein — as well as vitamin E. It’s also high in oleic acid, which can help reduce blood pressure.
- There are multiple major producersSpain, Italy, and Greece are the three largest producers of olive oil.
- Some people use lots of itIt’s normal for people in Greece to consume 26 liters of olive oil every year.
- Foods last longerIf you bake with butter, you may want to consider trying olive oil instead. The vitamin E and polyphenols can help your baked goods last longer.
WHY WE LOVE NATIONAL MEDITERRANEAN DIET MONTH
- It promotes healthy living. The Mediterranean Diet emphasizes exciting foods that can help lower cholesterol and decrease cancer risks — while helping to prevent heart attacks, strokes, and diabetes. Not only will you be improving your health, but you might lose some extra pounds in the process.
- Cheese is on the menu. Some of the cheeses you can expect to consume in May are feta, halloumi, and ricotta. All in moderation, of course.
- The food is delicious. There’s an emphasis on healthy fats (avocados, olive oil), flavorful spices, and herbs.