Can You Eat Popcorn On Mediterranean Diet

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

Martin Alvarez

Martin Alvarez
Nutritionist/Dietitian Professional Guide

Updated on 3/29/2023

What Is A Vegan Mediterranean Diet?

There is much more to a vegan Mediterranean diet than simply a style of eating. This fulfilling way of living focuses on savorily whole meals, unstructured physical activity, and quality time spent with one's loved ones and close companions.

It is not usual to hear the phrases "vegan diet" and "Mediterranean diet" used together, despite the fact that the majority of people are familiar with each of these concepts individually. However, the characteristics of each of these lifestyles work pretty well together.

Vegan All The Way

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

People who identify with the vegan lifestyle do not consume any items derived from animals. They might subscribe to this way of life for one of several different reasons.

People go vegan for various reasons, including their health, compassion for animals, and environmental concern. And many people go vegan for every one of these reasons.

Vegans abstain from eating meat, fish, and dairy products, and they also do not use any goods that are produced from animals. For instance, they will refrain from using cosmetics tested on animals and wearing shoes made of leather.

Mediterranean Diet Guideline

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

Foods like hummus, falafel, and Greek salad are typically the first things that come to mind when someone mentions the Mediterranean diet. But this incredible way of life is about so much more than just the excellent meals.

The following is a guideline of the main elements that make up the Mediterranean diet, as outlined in the Mayo Clinic's Mediterranean diet: a heart-healthy eating plan:

  • Consuming a diet that is predominantly composed of plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and nuts.
  • Swapping out lipids sourced from animals with more beneficial fats like olive oil.
  • Adding flavor to meals using herbs and spices as an alternative to salt.
  • Reducing one's intake of red meat, poultry, and fish is recommended.
  • Taking pleasure in one another's company while dining.
  • Getting in a reasonable amount of physical activity.

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

Even though the Mediterranean diet has been around for a while, many communities are paying attention to it in the media. It has been ranked number one as the most remarkable diet overall by U.S. News & World Report for several years. Numerous studies have demonstrated that people who live in regions bordering the Mediterranean Sea, such as Greece, Italy, Spain, as well as France, Turkey, North Africa, and the Middle East, have a lower incidence of chronic diseases, are generally healthier, and live longer. Additionally, they have a higher life expectancy.

In comparison to other approaches to nutrition, following a Mediterranean diet is one of the most straightforward and economical options. This is a significant advantage as it makes it less challenging to maintain this way of life throughout a more extended period.

A Match Made In Heaven

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

It is a logical fit given that both diets are primarily centered on consuming foods derived from plants.

Diet Versus Lifestyle

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

I frequently use the term "lifestyle" when referring to a vegan Mediterranean diet, and this is due to the fact that it involves more than simply the food that you consume. In point of fact, some of the features I enjoy the most extend beyond the food we place on our plates.

It all comes down to our choices on how we want to spend our lives. Not only do these decisions assist contribute to our physical health, but they also help contribute to our emotional well-being.

Therefore, determining what you ought to have for breakfast, lunch, and supper is not the only challenge here. This way of life is also about the choices we make in our day-to-day lives, such as; how much we exercise, how much time we spend with our friends and family, and how much time we spend outside.

What One Can Consume

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

There is a wide variety and an abundance of food options to choose from while following a vegan Mediterranean diet. It's pretty similar to a diet consisting of whole foods and plant-based products (WFPB).

Foods produced from plants are what we mean when we use the phrase "plant-based," despite the fact that the word "plant-based" is used rather frequently in marketing these days. This category doesn't include milk, eggs, and honey.

Included In The Category Of Whole Foods Are The Following:

  • Entire grains (including rice, millet, quinoa, and whole wheat.)
  • Vegetables and fruits
  • The legumes and bean products (including chickpeas, lentils, black beans, and tofu.)
  • Herbs and spices in general
  • Seeds and nuts both.

Olive oil is included in a WFPB diet, but not in a vegan Mediterranean diet, and this is the primary distinction between the two types of eating plans. In a Whole Food Plant-Based (WFPB) diet, oils are considered to be processed foods. On the other hand, the consumption of olive oil in moderation has been shown in several studies to inhibit or slow the development of cardiovascular disease and cancer. To follow both a vegan and a Mediterranean diet simultaneously. And I believe that you will discover that it is a pleasant way to eat and live your life.

When it comes to browning, roasting, and enhancing the flavor of salads, olive oil is an excellent choice. You can use it instead of butter, margarine, canola oil, and vegetable oils that have been heavily processed.

However, olive oil, as well as other oils such as avocado oil and walnut oil, are used in moderation. Even though they are suitable for your heart, consuming too much of them might cause you to gain weight because of the large number of calories that they contain.

Kitchen Staples

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

It is a lot less challenging to come up with something to eat if you stock your cupboard and refrigerator with items that are both nutritious and enjoyable. Look for essential things that can be consumed on their own or combined to create dishes that are savory and visually appealing.

These Are Some Of My Go-To Faves That I Always Make Sure To Have On Hand:

  • Bread made with whole grains.
  • Oats.
  • Rice with a brown crust.
  • Quinoa.
  • Pasta.
  • Cashews.
  • Pumpkin seeds.
  • Potatoes.
  • Sweet potatoes.
  • Carrots.
  • Leafy greens (lettuce, kale, spinach, etc.)
  • Tomatoes.
  • Avocados.
  • Cucumbers.
  • Squash.
  • Broccoli.
  • Cauliflower.
  • Onions.
  • Garlic.
  • Herbs and spices in both their fresh and dried forms.
  • Olive oil.
  • Fruit.

Avoiding Certain Foods Or Limiting Your Intake Of Others

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

The number of items that should be avoided is relatively low, with the exception of those derived from some animals, such as honey and dairy products. In moderation, the majority of meals may be enjoyed.

Foods That Have Been Processed.

If you haven't gone to the grocery store in a while, you may not have noticed the dramatic increase in the variety of plant-based foods that are currently on the shelves. In point of fact, I cannot think of a single dish containing meat or dairy that is not also offered in a vegan version.

On the other hand, many of these items are subjected to extensive processing. It is fine to indulge in them occasionally, but you should be conscious of their fat and sodium.

Crystallized Sugar Limitation

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

Even though it's fun to indulge in sweets like cake and cookies on holidays and other special occasions with loved ones and close friends, you should make every effort to limit the amount of sugar you add to your diet, especially in the form of sugary beverages and snacks.

Excessiveness Of Salt 

As long as you are not following the guidelines of a low-sodium diet that your doctor prescribed, it is acceptable to consume small amounts of salt. On the other hand, if you cook using herbs and spices that have a strong taste, you could discover that you don't use as much salt in your dishes.

I like to hold off on adding any salt until immediately before the dish is served. Also, keep in mind that you should taste as you go. It is simple to include a little bit of extra salt in the recipe, but removing it is not that simple!

Mediterranean Diet Versus Mediterranean Food

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

A common misunderstanding is that following a diet typical of the Mediterranean region is the same thing as consuming cuisine from that region. However, there is no guarantee of the outcome.

Pasta, Greek salad, falafel, hummus, and kebabs are some of the dishes that come to mind when we think of the cuisine served in restaurants specializing in Italian, Greek, and Middle Eastern cuisine. On the other hand, while it is true that we may indulge in plant-based adaptations of these classics while following a vegan Mediterranean diet, this does not exhaust our options.

Instead, we are looking at the healthy daily routines of the older generation of people who live in the Mediterranean area and what they consume when we talk about a "Mediterranean diet." Their diets primarily consist of whole foods that have been minimally processed, including vegetables and fruit, also beans and legumes, herbs and spices, whole grains, and olive oil.

We can, of course, take these components and transform them into dishes such as tabbouleh, which is a salad made with bulgur and parsley, kushari, which is made with rice, pasta, and lentils, and spaghetti with garlic and olive oil, which is an Italian dish; however, these are not the only options available to us.

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

On the other hand, the ideas of a Mediterranean diet may be applied to preparing dishes from around the world. It's like looking at all of your favorite foods from a vegan Mediterranean diet perspective.

For instance, a vegetable and tofu stir-fry that is influenced by Asian cuisine is a good choice that can be served with brown rice or quinoa. In addition, beans, maize, and various vegetables may be used to make tacos and other classic Mexican foods that people love.

It makes no difference if the recipes you select are not initially from the nations that make up the Mediterranean area. If you produce the food you eat using components that are whole foods and plant-based, you can eat everything you want, from sushi to casseroles and everything in between.

Lifestyle With A Diet

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

In addition to the cuisine, one of the aspects of following a vegan Mediterranean diet that I like the most is all of the health benefits. These qualities contribute to what makes this way of living so beneficial to one's health and fulfilling.

Exercising Is the Trick

The end objective should be to get some sort of physical activity on a daily basis. On the other hand, this does not imply that you need to start training for a marathon or a triathlon; all that is required is to move your body for an average of thirty to sixty minutes daily.

If you don't want to run or ride a bike, keep it accessible by going for walks or working in your garden. The natural movement works wonders. If you can do so, park your car at home and walk the distance to work or the store instead. Alternatively, you may walk your dog around the neighborhood.

Dancing, yoga, and stretching are all forms of exercise that benefit the body and mind. The trick is to pick something you like doing and maintain that activity regularly.

Socialize, Share And Enjoy

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

These days, most of our time is spent in front of various devices, and some individuals choose to live alone more than ever before. However, spending time with loved ones, such as family and friends, can contribute to improved health and well-being.

Sharing a meal with other people we care about is among the most enjoyable ways to spend time together. Not only is it delightful to engage in meaningful conversation, but it also compels us to slow down and focus on the taste of our food.

And when you're alone at the table, you should make an extra effort to savor every meal. Both sustaining life and bringing pleasure are the dual purposes of food.

A Sense Of Purpose

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

In order to motivate oneself to get out of bed first thing in the morning? A sense of purpose in one's life has been linked by research to an improved likelihood of living a long and healthy life.

Think about the things that are important to you personally if you are unsure of what your sense of purpose is. What is it that you value the most?

Here Are Some Possible Examples:

  • Providing for and looking for one's family
  • Maintaining a positive friendship.
  • Learning about other cultures and places while traveling the world
  • Providing assistance to those in need and engaging in volunteer work
  • Improving and preserving your current state of health

Vegan Mediterranean Diet Conclusion

mediterranean diet

mediterranean diet

It is my opinion that you will discover that adhering to a vegan diet that is based on the Mediterranean diet is not only delightful but will also make you feel well both mentally and physically. It is possibly possible that you will notice an improvement in your general health.

Let's Run Over A Quick Recap Of The Primary Aims Of A Vegan Mediterranean Diet:

Meals that include vegetables and fruit, whole grains, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds, herbs and spices, and beneficial fats like olive oil should be a part of your diet.

Get some fresh air and exercise by doing something you love doing outside, like walking, jogging, or gardening.

Spending some time with family and friends, especially over meals, you can enjoy yourself at a leisurely pace.

Achieve a life that feels meaningful to you.

Instead of viewing it as a controlled diet, think of it as a way of life.

Prioritize making progress above reaching perfection. Take one day at a time, yet keep an eye on the bigger picture simultaneously. And if you find yourself wandering off the path, try to find your way back.