What is the Mediterranean diet?

The Mediterranean diet is one that mainly includes foods that are plant based (such as fruits, vegetables and nuts), a reduced intake of dairy products, a moderate intake of fish and poultry and of course all the ‘good’ fats such as avocados and olive oil! Red or processed meats together with confectionary, containing trans-fats, are sometimes consumed in low portions, if at all.

Can people gain weight on a high-fat Mediterranean diet?

According to Livescience.com, a study that was published in the journal The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology showed that both men as well as women who followed a high-fat, Mediterranean diet ‘lost more weight and reduced their waist circumference more than people who were instructed to reduce their fat intake’ [good and bad fats].

There were three groups of participants in this study. The first group followed the Mediterranean diet and had to take a minimum of four tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil every day. The second group followed the Mediterranean diet and had to include at least three servings of nuts each week, whilst the last group followed a control diet in which the participants were advised to generally avoid consuming [both good and bad] fat.

The study took place over a period of five years. The results revealed that the first two groups of participants (those who had olive oil and nuts in their diet) lost more weight than the control group. In addition, group one and two also had greater reductions in their waist circumferences when compared to the control group.

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So it seems that people will not necessarily gain weight by consuming a high-fat Mediterranean diet.

The important thing to remember is that you should always be aware of your portion size and still engage in an adequate amount of physical activity daily. Always seek professional advice if you intend on making drastic changes to your diet, especially if you suffer from any medical conditions.

Source: Live Science

While All4Women endeavours to ensure health articles are based on scientific research, health articles should not be considered as a replacement for professional medical advice. Should you have concerns related to this content, it is advised that you discuss them with your personal healthcare provider.