Eat a Mediterranean Diet for good health. That’s what the research tells us.
The Mediterranean Diet Improves Health
According to the Mayo Clinic, following a Mediterranean Diet yields many health benefits:
Benefits of the Mediterranean diet:
Research has shown that the traditional Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of heart disease. The diet has been associated with a lower level of oxidized low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol — the “bad” cholesterol that’s more likely to build up deposits in your arteries.
In fact, a meta-analysis of more than 1.5 million healthy adults demonstrated that following a Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular mortality as well as overall mortality.
The Mediterranean diet is also associated with a reduced incidence of cancer, and Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. Women who eat a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil and mixed nuts may have a reduced risk of breast cancer.
For these reasons, most if not all major scientific organizations encourage healthy adults to adapt a style of eating like that of the Mediterranean diet for prevention of major chronic diseases.
Here’s What to Eat on the Mediterranean diet
The Mediterranean diet emphasizes:
• Eating primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts
• Replacing butter with healthy fats such as olive oil and canola oil
• Using herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods
• Limiting red meat to no more than a few times a month
• Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
• Enjoying meals with family and friends
• Drinking red wine in moderation (optional)
• Getting plenty of exercise
A Mediterranean Diet Healthy Recipe
This recipe is a perfect one for the Mediterranean Diet. It contains chicken for lean protein and is chock full of kale and artichokes. It also uses olive oil. The beauty of this recipe is that it only takes 30 minutes and there’s only one pan to clean.
A One-Pan Lemon Chicken with Artichokes and Kale in 30 Minutes
Try this Mediterranean Diet recipe.
Ingredients (4 servings)
• 1 (6-oz.) bunch lacinato kale, stemmed and torn into large pieces
• 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
• 4 (5-oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
• 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
• 2 (9-oz.) pkg. frozen artichokes, thawed and patted dry
• 1 lemon, cut into quarters
• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme, divided
• 2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, finely grated (about 1/2 cup)
• 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
• Preheat broiler to high with oven rack in top position. Place a rimmed baking sheet in oven (do not remove pan while oven preheats).
• Combine kale and 1 tablespoon oil in a bowl. Massage leaves with your hands until slightly wilted.
• Sprinkle chicken with black pepper and salt. Carefully remove pan from oven. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; tilt pan to coat. Add chicken to pan; broil 5 minutes.
• Add artichokes and lemon quarters to pan. Drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, and sprinkle with 1 1/2 teaspoons thyme.
• Broil until chicken is done, 10 to 12 minutes.
• Place chicken on a cutting board. Add kale mixture to pan; broil until kale is frizzled and edges are crisp, 3 to 5 minutes.
• Return chicken to pan; sprinkle with remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons thyme, cheese, and red pepper. Squeeze lemon quarters over chicken and vegetables.
Cooking Tips: Select smaller chicken breasts (about 5 ounces each) because they will easily cook within the time frame. Avoid thin cutlets. Thicker breasts will stay juicy as they roast.
Click here for the full Mediterranean Diet recipe for One-Pan Lemon Chicken with Artichokes and Kale.