Archive for Mediterranean

The Mediterranean Diet Pyramid

You have probably heard about the Mediterranean Diet and the benefit this diet plan can have on your health and lifestyle. But, like so many other people, you have probably just heard about it, you don’t know the details and probably think Mediterranean meal plan is difficult to follow.

The Mediterranean Diet, or Mediterranean cuisines which would be more accurate, describes a delicious way of drinking and eating based on plentiful of fruits, vegetables, abundance of rice, pasta, beans and grain foods, poultry and lean mean, and moderate amount of red wine and dairy products. It is important to emphasize that Mediterranean Diet isn’t a single, homogeneous diet. Still, all the eating habits of the population that lives around Mediterranean Sea share same fundamental elements.

The beauty of Mediterranean cuisine is that anyone, at any given time can follow this simple diet and can enjoy all the health benefits from Mediterranean life style. For Americans, northern and eastern Europeans and others who want to improve their eating habits and lose weight, Mediterranean recipes provide a healthful framework for change. The easiest way to explain Mediterranean Diet is with Diet Pyramid. The Mediterranean Diet Pyramid is a graphical guide which explains the pattern of eating, suggesting the types and the frequency of food that should be enjoyed daily, weekly and monthly. That is way the pyramid is divided into 4 parts.

At the bottom of the pyramid we have the group of foods that should be eaten very often (daily). This group contains carbohydrates like pasta, bread, potatoes, rice, grains, seasonal fruits and vegetables, legumes and olive oil. Herbs and spices also are in this group. All of these foods should be eaten daily, in moderate portions.

In the second group we have proteins like poultry, fish and seafood, dairy products (yogurt and cheese), nuts and beans. If you don’t like or are allergic to seafood and fish, exclude them from your diet! Foods from this group should be consumed at least two times a week.

The third group from the bottom of the pyramid represents the food groups that should be consumed max two times a week. In this group we find lean meat (like lamb, cuts of pork) and eggs. At the top of the pyramid we have food groups that should be consumed just a few times every month, red meat and sweets.

As you can see, following Mediterranean Diet is actually quite easy, and literally anyone who follows Mediterranean diet plan will enjoy health benefits and weight loss. Many generations of Mediterranean people have proven that the Mediterranean diet is not only a weight loss and diet; it’s also one of the healthiest ways of eating in the world.

Alessia Rossi is a nutritionist, passionate about Mediterranean food, diet and culture. Do you want to lose some extra weight? Look at this amazing Mediterranean Diet Weight Loss Plan.

Mediterranean Diet Menu

Mediterranean Diet originated from the Mediterranean Region with some 21 countries that border the Mediterranean Sea. It is located between Europe, Africa and Asia and is the largest inland sea in the world. Countries include Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Croatia, Greece and the countries of North Africa – they all are called Mediterranean Region.

Because of huge differences between cultures, mentalities and living habits of the population of this countries, Mediterranean diet vary greatly from country to country. Still, there are some eating patters that are same or similar throughout Mediterranean Region. People in this area eat:

Olives and olive oil is the main source of fat and it replaces almost all other oils
Lots of fruits, vegetables and whole grain fresh bread
Lots of cereals, potatoes, rice, beans, nuts
Fewer dairy products and eggs
Little read meat (few times a month)
Red meat is substituted with fish and poultry
Low to moderate amounts of wine

Overall, a typical Mediterranean diet plan consist of legumes and beans, huge variety of fresh vegetables and seasonal fruits, seafood and fish (in some parts of the region), fresh herbs, wine, yogurt and extra virgin olive oil.  It is impossible to come up with an exact definition of Mediterranean diet because the population in this region consumes a diverse set of foods. It is interesting to note that Mediterranean diet plan is really an eating pattern followed by people in the Mediterranean region for thousands of years. It consists of around 10% carbohydrates, 10% fats, 20% meats (fish and poultry) and 60% of vegetables. It is not so much a diet, but more a “way of life” with balanced eating habits which lead to healthier life and weight loss.

Large amounts of fruits and vegetables, and moderate amounts of seafood, fish and wine, provide anti-oxidants which even help the anti-aging method. And the fibers from rice, fresh bread, potatoes and pasta (all hugely popular food on the Mediterranean menu) are natural fillers which after a meal give a nice sense of fulfillment and prevent a person from periodically reaching for snacks. Mediterranean style diet is all about select foods that satisfy your hunger, supply your body with energy and provide important nutrients, which make it a perfect diet plan for healthier life and weight loss.

If your goals are to lose weight and maintain the new weight, to improve your longevity and to eat healthier, you should consider switching to Mediterranean diet menu.

Alessia Rossi is a nutritionist, passionate about Mediterranean food, diet and culture. Join the thousands of happy people who’ve been able to lose extra weight and eat healthier by following Mediterranean Diet Plan.

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Mediterranean Diet Explained

There is no such thing as a single Mediterranean diet, because over twenty countries border the Mediterranean Sea. The food from Libya is very different from the food from Italy, but broadly speaking what is charecterised as the Mediterranean Diet does have certain similarities. it contains little red meat, lots of fresh fish, plenty of grains and pulses, loads of fruit and vegetables and the healthy oxidants that they contain and red wine is the alcoholic drink of choice.

Olive Oil

The main source of fat is olive oil, a monounsaturated fat, which comes from pressing the fruit of the olive tree. It is important for health because it does not raise the bodies’ cholesterol level the way that saturated fat does, and better still it is thought to boost the good cholesterol in the diet. In general most people that live around the Mediterranean Sea eat more calories from fat than is generally recommended for health, most will eat a salad at least once a day and it will have a dressing of olive oil and fresh lemon juice, or vinegar. They don’t make a vinaigrette dressing they just pour the olive oil on the salad followed by the acidic medium. However most health experts and nutritionalists agree that having a diet high in monounsaturated fat it better than having a diet high in bad fats.

Fresh fish, shellfish and oily fish
Ideally fish should be eaten three times a week and at least one of those portions should be oily fish, such as tuna, mackerel, or salmon. Shrimps, prawn and crayfish are higher in cholesterol the white fish, but they are have less fat and specifically less saturated fat than most meats and poultry. Fish can be baked, steamed or grilled for maximum health. Fresh fish tastes better when it is grilled with a little butter and served with freshly squeezed lemon juice and a little lemon zest. Haven’t got time to prepare a fish dish, then make a huge bowl of fresh salad and add a hard boiled egg and a can of drained tuna in brine over the top and serve with a crust wholewheat roll for a perfectly balanced nutritious lunch. The fatty fish are all high in omega 3.

Seasonings
The Mediterranean diet uses salt but it also reduces salt by flavouring the food with fresh herbs such as mint, basil, parsley, fresh thyme, orange thyme and lemon thyme, oregano, chives and wild herbs such as marjoram.

Legumes, peas, beans, pulses
All the peoples of the Mediterranean use lots of beans, pulses and legumes. The Southern Mediterranean African make houmous, which is mashed chickpeas, with fresh lemon juice, olive oil and lashings of fresh garlic. Try it for breakfast on wholewheat toast, cut out the butter and just have lashings of houmous. Traditionally it is served for breakfast but with hot flat unleavened pita bread. The French add puy lentils to their salads. They are a small slate green lentil with a marbled effect of blue and they hold their shape during cooking. An example of a healthy lentil dish is given below.

Spicy Lentils

Ingredients

2 tablespoon olive oil
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon turmeric
2 whole cloves
Seeds from three green cardamom pods
1 tablespoon palm sugar or light brown sugar
1 tablespoon ghee
1 fresh green chilli, finely chopped
3 tablespoons golden raisins
Zest of a small lime
1 vine of cherry tomato, chopped
4 ounces of cooked Puy lentils,
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh coriander leaves
pinch salt
lashings of black pepper

Method

Heat the oil over a medium heat, add the onion and fry for 2-3 minutes, until softened. Add the yellow pepper and fry for a further 3 minutes. Add the spices, palm sugar, ghee, chilli, raisins, lime zest, toasted and chopped tomato to the pan and continue to cook for 5 minutes. Add the lentils, season and garnish with coriander leaves before serving.

I am an ex chef who loves to cook and prepare food. I am a squidoo addict and my Squidoo pages are my hobby. Read more of my recipes at Perfect Holiday Cheesecakes or Italian recipes

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Food Genius Publishes Mediterranean Menu Trends and Insights Data Report for Full of Foodservice Industry Analytics.


Chicago, IL (PRWEB) May 14, 2015

Food Genius, the leading foodservice data provider specializing in gathering, preparing, and serving granular foodservice menu data and analytics, has published a new monthly industry analytics presentation focused on one of America’s most common cuisine types. Mediterranean cuisine has been growing in popularity over the last number of years in part thanks to the successful growth of new quick casual operators like Zoe’s kitchens and the massive rise of the Greek yogurt category. Food Genius decided to focus their regular monthly menu data analytics around this cuisine and has some interesting takeaways for those in the restaurant industry who are thinking about how to incorporate Mediterranean ingredients and flavors into their offerings.

Mediterranean Menu Trends and Insights, Food Genius’ data presentation details analytics on what ingredients, dishes, proteins, and dressings are most commonly utilized within Mediterranean cuisine in the US. With an emphasis on plant-based ingredients, health experts recently promoted Mediterranean cuisine as a healthy and well-balanced diet that could curb memory loss as the brain ages.

With consumers maintaining focus on healthy restaurant options, Food Genius believes there are opportunities for non-Mediterranean operators to think about how they too can incorporate Mediterranean-inspired flavors or ingredients that consumers will gravitate towards.

Key insights from Food Genius’ Report:


    Hummus is only featured on 14% of all menus nationwide, but 75% of Mediterranean menus
    Lamb appears to be more established as a distinctly Mediterranean ingredient in its application, than in most other cuisines.
    The average price of Mediterranean entrees across the US is $ 7.48
    Want to learn more? Download the complete report from Food Genius.

Mediterranean Menu Trends and Insights highlights data sourced from Q2’15 by Food Genius. Food Genius data services are utilized across the foodservice industry to answer many complex business questions. For more information about Mediterranean Menu Trends and Insights, please contact Eli Rosenberg, eli(at)getfoodgenius(dot)com or at (312) 229-0168. Ongoing insights from the Food Genius team will be published on the Food Genius blog http://blog.getfoodgenius.com.

About Food Genius                       

Food Genius is a leading foodservice data provider specializing in gathering, preparing, and serving granular foodservice menu data and analytics. We support foodservice manufacturers, restaurants, and distributors with straightforward and digestible reports, services, and analytics. Our products are being used to answer many complex foodservice business questions.

Food Genius serves nationally recognized companies and brands, including Kraft, Coca-Cola, Arby’s, and US Foods. As an industry leader in foodservice data and analytics, Food Genius is on a mission to provide foodservice manufacturers, restaurants, and distributors with the data analytics they need to make smarter, more informed decisions. Contact Food Genius at http://www.getfoodgenius.com







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Proven Mediterranean Diet

Is your current diet plan not working for you? Ever thought of trying mediterranean diet instead? According to wikipedia.com, this is a modern nutritional recommendation inspired by the traditional dietary patterns of Crete, much of the rest of Greece and Southern Italy in the 1980s. Not sure what to expect?

Mediterranean diet is about combining greek food products into your diet like extra virgin oil, balsamic vinegar, greek olives and so much more. Mediterranean diet has been popular amongst many people partly because of the many health benefits that comes with it. Many have claimed to have lower risks of cardiovascular diseases from practicing this diet.

Mediterranean diet is often beneficial for health due to it’s low levels of saturated fat and high levels of monounsaturated dat. Apart from that, dietary fibers are also beneficial to the human body. Many have claimed that the great effects comes from the extensive oil products that is included in the diet.

Olive oil is an amazing product. Not only does it do wonders for your body, it can also be used for various home remedies for skin care, hair care and also body care. It is a natural product with no chemicals and heat in the extraction process. This ensures that it is organic and a good source of healthy supplement to the body.

Olive oil is rich in vitamin E, vitamins K and Vitamin A which aids in healthy skin. It is also filled with good fat contents like monounsaturated fat and poly saturated fat which are healthy fats to the body. The benefits is that it does not just stop there, long term consumption of it in your diet also helps to combat various health problems.

Long term consumption of olive oil is said to be able to help lower blood pressure. Many patients do not need to depend on their medication to help control their blood pressure level through long term consumption of extra virgin oil. And this diet uses a lot of the oil in their meals. Besides that, it is said to be able stimulate bone growth and aid in calcium absorption.

Long term consumption of mediterranean diet can also help in fighting heart diseases. This diet helps with circulatory problem and thus aid in reducing arteriosclerosis. The healthy fats in olive oil are also beneficial in fighting against the bad cholesterol in our body. Another benefit of olive oil is that is also helps us in digesting food in our system more smoothly.

Seeing the many benefits of olive oil in most mediterranean diet, you might want to start now in making your own mediterranean diet. Go online and look for recipes that can incorporate olive oil plus munching on olives alone are yummy as well. Keep you and your family healthy by discovering the many benefits of thisdiet!

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Compare Paleo Diet to Mediterranean Diet

The Paleo Diet or Caveman Diet is over 10,000 years old. Paleolithic Diet is presently the Modern Paleo diet. The Paleolithic people were caveman and cavewomen.  There was no farming and wild animals roamed free. Paleolithic period is pre-agriculture. Paleolithic diet was dairy free animals had not been domesticated. Potatoes and grain were excluded from their diet since all foods were eaten raw potatoes and grains content toxins when raw.

High consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Olive Oil and some vegetable oils.
Lean Meat, Poultry and Fish
Nuts and Seeds
Eggs
Red Wine controversial in Paleo Diet.

 

The Mediterranean Diet comes from countries of the Mediterranean basin. These countries are: Italy, Greece, Crete, southern France and Spain. There is a high consumption of fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains and olive oil. Red meat is substituted with seafood or poultry. Red wine in moderation. The diet varies from one Mediterranean country to another. The principles are the same:

 

– High consumption of fruits and vegetables

– Dairy produces: milk, cheeses and yogurt. In lieu of cow’s milk some cultures consume goat, sheep or buffalo milk.

– Olive oil versus butter. Olive oil low in saturated fat and increases the level of HDL good cholesterol.

– Whole grain, cereals and pasta.

– High consumption of beans, nuts and seeds.

Beans and legume – have soluble fiber when passed through the intestinal tract grabs and removes cholesterol before it is absorbed in your body. By reducing the cholesterol level beans reduces the risk of heart disease.  

– Red meat and dairy substituted with poultry or sea food.

– Red meat eaten in very limited qualities.

– A maximum of 4 eggs a week.

– Potatoes and Rice

– Red wine consumed in moderation.

 

Foods Included in Mediterranean Diet and Excluded from Paleo Diet.

The Paleo and Mediterranean Diets are very similar but excluded foods mark a significant difference in both diets.

 

Dairy Products: Dairy produces not allowed in Paleo Diet but allowed in Mediterranean Diet. During Paleolithic period dairy was not eaten because animals had not been domesticated. Dairy produces high in saturated fats cream, cheese and butter. Milk contains anti nutrient exorphins.

Bean and Legumes: Beans not allowed in Paleo Diet but allowed in Mediterranean diet. Legume includes navy, kidney, string, black, and pinto beans, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), lentils, carob, licorice, and peanuts. It is commonly thought the peanuts are in the nut family. Peanuts are legumes and not allow in Paleo Diet. The soy allergy can extend to other foods in the legume family. Soybean allergies and peanut allergies are common. In all allergies a professional doctor should be consulted for treatment and diet.

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Rice and Potatoes are excluded from Paleo Diet.

 

After the Paleolithic period came the Neolithic period or agriculture age. Man was able to plant seeds for crops, fire was controlled for cooking. Toxic plants were not eaten by the Caveman. Cooking killed many of the toxins making these food edible. Cooking does not kill all of the toxins. Toxins in grains, potatoes, legumes and rice retain some anti-nutrients after cooked. Dairy contains several anti nutrients. Grain, wheat, potatoes, rice, legumes and dairy excluded from Paleo Diet.

Anti nutrients

– Exorphins: Anti-nutrient found in dairy products and wheat. Morphine chemical counter acts body’s nature production of endorphins.

– Lectins: Anti-nutrient can trick body’s immune system resulting in immune diseases. Lectins found in grains, wheat, rice, potatoes, legumes (especially peanuts and soy beans) and dairy.

– Enzyme Blockers: Can block body’s nature enzymes in stomach, small intestines and digestive starches. Over long period may cause pancreas stresses in natural production of enzymes. Foods: grains, wheat and potatoes.

– Glycoalkaloids: Anti-toxin not destroyed when potatoes are cooked.

The Paleo Diet excluded these foods cooked they still retain small amounts of toxins or anti-nutrients.

For nutritional reasons wheat, dairy and soy excluded for Paleo diet.  Additionally, Paleo diet is an excellent choice for those that require a gluten, dairy and soy free diet.

 All medical information needs to be carefully reviewed with your health care provider. Note: The information on this site should not replace advice from your physician. Always check your physician before making any changes to your daily habits. “Disclosure: Compensation Affiliate”

 

 

Paleo Diet Paleo Diet Recipes  Paleo Nutritious Diet What Is Paleo Diet?

Mediterranean Diet and the South Beach Diet: A Detailed Comparison

Mediterranean Diet and the South Beach Diet: A Detailed Comparison

Good health and longevity interests people of all ages from around the world. As a result, the weight loss and fitness industries have been booming for years. There are so many diets that those seeking help with their weight loss or health needs don’t know where to turn.

Two diets that have become extremely popular recently are the Mediterranean Diet and the South Beach Diet. Here’s a detailed comparison of both diets.

Mediterranean Diet Explained

The Mediterranean Diet is often called “The Healthiest Diet in the World” because of its healthy weight loss benefits. Just as the name implies, the Mediterranean Diet has been enjoyed by people who live in the Mediterranean region, particularly Italy and Greece, for thousands of years and is now being adopted by many Americans and others around the world.

It is a diet low in saturated fat with healthy mono-unsaturated fats being provided through fish, nuts and olive oil. It features foods such as dried fruits, vegetables, whole grains, small portions of meat such as salmon, turkey, lamb, and tuna, and a small amount of wine.

The Mediterranean Diet is known for its many benefits such as help in the prevention of gallstones, breast cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, Lou Gehrig disease, high cholesterol, and other diseases.

South Beach Diet Explained

The South Beach Diet is a newer “no carb” type diet where carbohydrates are prohibited during the first phase of the diet, and then are slowly introduced back into the diet after two weeks. There are three phases all together, with the third being for maintenance. The focus is on lean meats such as chicken, turkey, shellfish, and fish as well as nuts, eggs, and low-fat cheese. The benefits are weight loss with a long-term balanced diet plan to help with weight maintenance.

How the Diets are Alike

The similarities of these two diets include eating restaurant quality recipes and promoting healthy monounsaturated fats. Both diets are low in unhealthy saturated fats. The unhealthy fats are found in cheese and meat. Both diets promote healthy foods. Both provide an avenue for fast weight loss with a plan for lifetime maintenance. Also, both diets offer online support and memberships for delicious diet recipes. For instance, Ayhan’s Mediterranean Menu Plans are available for those who want to change over to a Mediterranean way of eating.

How They Differ

With the Mediterranean Diet, alcohol (especially wine) is allowed in moderation. It is prohibited in the first phase of the South Beach Diet. The Mediterranean Diet is high in fiber while the South Beach Diet is low in fiber during its initial phase.

Portion control is the main focus of the Mediterranean Diet while the South Beach Diet restricts “what” is eaten by prohibiting certain fruits and vegetables. Another major difference is that those who adopt the Mediterranean Diet may order foods, dressings and seasonings online for their cooking needs. The South Beach Diet does not offer products such as these.

The South Beach Diet has only been around a few years while the Mediterranean Diet has been around for thousands of years. Studies have shown that those eating a Mediterranean Diet have less risk of major diseases and can even increase longevity.

In this comparison, we see that both diets offer health and weight loss benefits. However, the Mediterranean Diet appears to be better for long-term good health and has fared well in many studies.

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Mediterranean Diet

Well, to begin with, there isn’t really any one Mediterranean Diet! There’s a whole swag of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. The basic Mediterranean Diet has common characteristics even if the sourrounding countries differ in culture, language and recipes to some extent.

* an extensive intake of fruits, vegetables, bread and cereals, potatoes, beans, nuts and seeds
* olive oil is a source of mono-unsaturated fat – common to the Mediterranean area
* some dairy products, fish and even poultry are consumed in sparing to moderate amounts, and some red meat(not much)
* eggs are consumed in low to moderate amount say 1 to 4 eggs a week
* fortunately wine is acceptable but in low quantities ie. 1 – 3 glasses per day

A good question to ask is – Does a Mediterranean-style diet follow American Heart Association dietary guidelines?

Mediterranean-style diets are often close to US dietary guidelines, but not exactly.

People who follow the average Mediterranean diet eat less saturated fat than those who eat the average American diet. In fact, saturated fat consumption is well within US dietary guidelines. More than half the fat calories in a Mediterranean diet come from mono-unsaturated fats (mainly from olive oil). Mono-unsaturated fat doesn’t raise blood cholesterol levels the way saturated fat does.

The incidence of heart disease in Mediterranean countries is lower than in the United States. Death rates are lower, too.
However there are some who feel this may not be entirely due to the diet. Lifestyle factors (ie. more physical activity and extended social family support structures) may also play a part. At this stage this is just a theory. However the research tells all – the diet has existed for umpteen years.

If you would like further proof of the mediterranean diet benefits resulting from research and qualified researchers you could try visiting http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/short/348/26/2599 or http://my.webmd.com/content/article/67/80070.htm. Both of these sites give good ‘food for thought'(excuse the pun).

“Olive oil plays a central role, but it is not alone,” says Dimitrios Trichopoulos, MD, PhD, of Harvard School of Public Health.

“It’s among the divine mix of several factors that, when used in combination, help provide strong evidence of something that is very important — eating the proper diet can significantly reduce your risk of early death.”

He and researchers from Greece studied some 22,000 adults, aged 20 to 86, from all regions of that country; most previous studies tracked only older people who were more likely to die during the study. The participants answered detailed questionnaires about their eating habits throughout the four-year study. Then they were rated on how closely they followed the key principles of the Mediterranean diet.

Sticking to the Mediterranean diet cut the risk of death from both heart disease and cancer. For every two points higher on this 0-to-9 scale — with top numbers going to those most closely following the Mediterranean diet — the death rate dropped by 25%.

The findings by Trichopoulos may also help explain why Asians, who typically use these other cooking oils, also have lower disease and death rates. Although they rarely use olive oil, they traditionally follow other principles of the Mediterranean diet — lots of produce, legumes, nuts, and minimally processed grains, with little saturated fat.

“The message remains the same, and is consistent with other findings: A diet lower in saturated fats and higher in monounsaturated fats, and potentially, polyunsaturates, will result in better health outcomes,” says Alice H. Lichtenstein, DSc, of Tufts University and a spokeswoman for the American Heart Association.

“If the main message that Americans get is to just increase their olive or canola oil consumption, that’s unfortunate because they will increase their caloric intake and they are already getting too many calories. What they need to do is eat more fruits, vegetables, and legumes and fewer foods rich in saturated fats.”

Some of this information has been referenced from The New England Journal of Medicine, June 26, 2003. Dimitrios Trichopoulos, MD, PhD, professor of epidemiology, Vincent L. Gregory Professor of Cancer Prevention, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston. Alice H. Lichtenstein, DSc, senior scientist and director, Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Researcher Center on Aging, Tufts University, Boston; spokeswoman, American Heart Association.

So in a nutshell, there is sound evidence that the Mediterranean Diet can help reduce heart disease, cancer, weight gain and of course reduce the risk of early death. However, it would be a mistake to think this outcome is based on the use of Olive Oil alone. The diet is diverse and allows for taste and creativity which is often lacking in most other diets. This alone warrants further investigation from those who seek a healthy, easy diet that has flavour and is fullfilling. Remember too that just as in all worthwhile diets, moderate level exercise should not be overlooked.

Recommended Free Ebooks:

http://www.freeeboooks.com/health-and-fitness/Body-Detox-Made-Easy.html

http://www.freeeboooks.com/health-and-fitness/Dr-Atkins-Low-Carb-Diet-Recipes.html

http://www.freeeboooks.com/health-and-fitness/Understanding-Diabetes-and-Glycemic-Index.html

 

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