When it comes to healthy diet, you should not be starving yourself if you plan on being healthy. Studies now show that instead of aiming to lose weight, it is much healthier to change what you eat than aim for weight loss. In a study from PLOS Medicine, researchers discovered that people with a high body mass index (BMI) didn’t need to lose weight. All they needed to do was change what they were eating instead of starving themselves.
A Mediterranean Diet Changes The Risks
The study, which was done in Sweden, tracked the diets of over 79,003 adults. Then period of study as 21 years and tracked their diets and other health factors. 30,389 of the respondents died during the study period which helped greatly in determining the various risk factors.
The results of the study looked at people with varying levels of BMI. Science shows that high BMI means a higher risk of mortality. This is because of the risks of heart disease and other related conditions. What the recent study revealed was that people with higher BMI didn’t need to lower it to reduce their mortality risk. They can get the same results by choosing to change their diet to a Mediterranean-style one. The data shows that once obese people shift to a healthier diet, their mortality risks drop down to match people with normal BMI.
What is interesting is that people with low or normal BMI see their mortality risks go up if they start eating an unhealthy diet. The effect of a bad diet was very pronounced, with people with bad diets dying much earlier than heavier people who followed a Mediterranean diet.
Thinner Is Not Healthier
The concept of thin not being healthy is quickly becoming the norm. There are unhealthy means of losing weight after all. For example, eating disorders often result in people being severely underweight. This is because of the unhealthy eating habits they follow. For example, bulimia sufferers eat a lot for some time and then start starving themselves after. This is incredibly unhealthy and people don’t notice it. If you do suffer from bulimia, you should consult with experts for a bulimia treatment plan so that you can recover.
Not all diets are healthy either. Some diets cause major physiological changes in the body. Unhealthy diets can cause a body to slowly shut down as it receives less energy from food. It goes into starvation mode, which is when the body reduces its metabolic rate so it consumes less energy. This can also cause emotional changes since the lack of food can cause you to be more nervous and twitchy. Less food can even affect your mental performance.
A Healthy Diet With All The Trimmings
The diet that the researchers saw that was so effective was the Mediterranean diet. The regional name refers to the fact that it was what many people in the region ate. Interest in the Mediterranean diet started in the 60s. This was when scientists noticed that people from places like Greece and Italy did not suffer as many deaths from heart disease compared to other places like the US and Europe. Nowadays, scientific studies show that the diet is very food at lowering the risks of cardiovascular disease.
The exact details of a Mediterranean diet vary. This is because of the large area that the Mediterranean sea covers. People at one end may differ from another. But several characteristics are common throughout the region. First, there is a large consumption of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and healthy fats. This most noticeable in the common use of olive oil which has a lot of healthy fat in it. Then there are the weekly portions of fish, eggs, poultry, and beans. Considering the large bounty of fish in the sea, it is common to see a lot of seafood in the diet. The last few parts of the diet are moderate consumption of dairy and low red meat intake. Scientists also note regular exercise and a bit of red wine can go a long way in this diet.
Developing your version of this diet is easy. Note that the foundation of the meals is vegetables and fruits, along with grains. Increasing your intake of them while also mixing in healthy fat sources like fish and olive oil is essential.
If you are on the heavy side, you might despair a bit about losing weight. Don’t worry about it and shift to a healthy yet satisfying Mediterranean diet that will keep you full while also extending your life.