The way we feed ourselves is without any doubt one of the most important factors for a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes is not easy to keep a healthy lifestyle, especially when you spend your time running around. However it only takes a bit of good will and it is indeed possible to have a balanced diet.
There are many factors that influence diets. For instance, did you know that diets are often conditioned by geographical, cultural and even religious issues?
In this post we purpose to show you the top 10 diets in the world.
Sit tight and enjoy the trip around the world most famous diets.
1. Mediterranean Diet
According to Oldways Preservation & Exchange Trust, the concept of the Mediterranean diet was introduced in 1993 by Oldways, the School of Public Health Harvard and the World Health Organization is based on a set of culinary traditions of the Mediterranean countries, as Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal.
This diet includes mainly: Fish and seafood; very little red meat; olives and olive oil; whole grains, especially in breads and cereals instead of pasta; cheese, but little milk; a lot of vegetables, nuts and red wine.
The Mediterranean diet is also rich in antioxidants and fiber derived from vegetables and nuts – much richer than the typical Western diet (USA) – and low in saturated fats. It consumes very little red meat and milk, except cheese and yogurt.
Includes foods high in fat, but there is also a lower incidence in cardiovascular diseases and cancers than in other parts of the world.
This difference may be related to the practically exclusive use of olive oil instead of other types of fat. Olive oil is a monounsaturated fat, which helps keep arteries healthy.
2. Vegan Diet
A vegan diet excludes every food that has animal origin, which has been tested on animals or contribute in some way to animal exploitation. This means: meat, fish, eggs, milk and dairy products, honey, and all the ingredients that have some animal origin.
One of the main issues that come up with this diet is where you get the essential nutrients for a healthy life.
Here is a list of the main plant sources of various nutrients:
Protein: Quinoa, legumes (beans, lentils, peas, chickpeas), nuts (seeds , nuts, almonds, walnuts, Tahin), wholegrain cereals and derivatives (rice, wheat, rye , barley) , fruits (avocado, coconut), vegetables (beets, broccoli), seaweed, mushrooms;
Essential amino acids: Quinoa has all essential amino acids;
Proteins are made of amino acids, and all essential amino acids for human nutrition can be found in foods of plant origin. The key to getting all the essential amino acids is the most varied diet, opting every day for two or more sources and alternating them;
Calcium / Iron: Quinoa , leguminous, oil seeds, dark green vegetables (broccoli, okra, watercress, cabbage), fresh fruit, dried fruit (raisins, figs, apricots), mushrooms;
Omega – 3 and Omega – 6: Quinoa oil (chia seeds , flax seeds, pressed flaxseed oil cold).
3. Macrobiotic Diet
Although macrobiotic privileges food plant ingredients, it differs from vegetarian, allowing, for example, eating fish one to two times per week.
No great emphasis is given to the consumption of whole grains, which are not the core of the macrobiotic practice, unlike vegetables and legumes.
The macrobiotic diet is also based on Eastern principles of yin and yang, complementary opposite forces. It is through these principles that, for example, comprising the urge for sweets / sugar (yin) after excessive consumption of meat (Yang).
4. Raw Diet
The raw food is a radical aspect of vegetarianism which attracts more and more people in the World. On behalf of a healthier life, Raw Food enthusiasts only eat raw foods.
What are the principles of raw food?
Cleanse the body giving up any manufactured product, for example. Proteins are provided by nuts, seeds and algae. The carbs come from fruits, vegetables, and fats from coconut oils, flaxseed, sesame and cocoa butter. And to sweeten? Organic honey and dates.
5. Paleolithic and Low-Carb Diet
The diet is based on the premise that human genetics have scarcely changed since the dawn of agriculture, which marked the end of the Paleolithic era, around 15,000 years ago, and that modern humans are adapted to the diet of the Paleolithic period – thus, products that came through agriculture should not be consumed.
Quite simply , the idea is to eat as our ancestors!
– A daily Paleo food thus has an average of 60 % fat, 30 % protein and 10 % carbohydrate . (It can also be 60 , 20 and 20). It’s an approach based on high consumption of fat and low-carbohydrate diet.
– The Paleolithic Diet has no calorie restriction!
That is, you can eat all you want of the allowed foods .
– The allowed foods include: meat, poultry , fish , eggs , vegetables (except for tubers), fruit (consumption in moderation , as the current fruits are genetically modified to be sweeter), nuts and chestnuts (also moderate, as these foods contain a significant amount of carbohydrates. Recommend consumption of up to two daily portions) and natural fats (olive oil , butter and coconut oil).
6. South Asian Diet
The South Asian diet is influenced by Chinese cuisine, resulting in numerous dishes and habits in common between them. However, it can be distinguished in many ways the two trends: Malaysia (with plenty of fish, fruits and vegetables) and Asia (pork, sauces, noodles, etc…)
One of the main ingredients is rice, which is commonly used in almost all countries of the region in different varieties. The main ones are long grain, basmati or jasmine rice.
Some cooking processes are very characteristic, such as fried rice. For leguminous, the most consumed are soybeans.
The next ingredient most used is pasta, in the form of noodles, and is a distinctly Asian influence in local dishes. It is common in some areas the practice of entomophagy (eating insects) and one of the most famous is the insects Lethocerus indicus (giant water bug).
Very hot sauces are very common in every country in the southeast. Some are used as a condiment, as a sauce for fish, shrimp paste, etc.
A common element is the use of coconut milk. Among the most common techniques of cooking it is stir-frying.
7. Nordic Diet
Contemporary Nordic diets are characterized by high intake of sugar, margarine, fatty dairy products, red meat, and low consumption of fruit and vegetables, which has a negative impact on health. However, there are nutritional components on this traditional diet.
An analysis for each ingredient suggests that there are benefits in the consumption of whole grains by men, and also sprouts (women and men) and with root vegetables (women), meaning that consuming these foods makes you live longer.
Studies show that it is possible to acquire a healthy diet that promotes longevity within a cultural context based on traditional Nordic food.
8. Mesoamerican Diet
The Mesoamerican diet, which derives from traditional Mexican diet, is one of the richest, most varied and nutritious diets in the world. In Mexico there are numerous eating patterns, many of which have an ancient history and are the product of the interaction of various cultures.
Mexican inherited one of the most remarkable, rich, vigorous and healthy culinary traditions that exist in the world today.
Traditional Mexican diet coincides remarkably with current principles of desirable food. Includes both whole grain (tortilla and beans) as a wide variety of vegetables and fruits, and moderate intake of animal products, sugar and fats.
Nutritionally, the mesoamerican diet is a good source of energy and complex carbohydrates, protein, with the combination of corn and beans, vitamins and minerals in fruit and vegetables, as well as the daily consumption of chili. Also, it is good source of calcium nixtamalization corn, low fat in its original form and high in fiber.
9. Hunza People Diet
The Hunza people lives in the mountains of the Himalayas in the far north of India, where the territories of Kashmir, India and Pakistan join. There are only 30 thousand people living in an idyllic valley with 2.5 km of altitude, in the Hindu Kush mountains.
It was a Scottish doctor, Mac Carrisson, who discovered these people and lived with them for 7 years.
In the beginning, he found that Hunzas were endowed with an exceptional health. It seems they were immunized against modern diseases especially cancer and myocardial infarction, and realized that they did not even know the word “disease”. In fact, they do not suffer from arthritis, varicose veins, constipation, stomach ulcers, appendicitis and more surprising is that children do not have mumps, measles or chickenpox, and infant mortality is very low. It is not uncommon to see 90 year old Hunzas procreate with women over 80 years who look like 40 years old western women.
The Hunza people take only two meals a day. The first meal is at noon. They get up every morning at five o’clock, work hard for agriculture throughout the morning on an empty stomach. It is interesting to note that physical activity or exercise done fasting provides the greatest effects of enzyme induction of antioxidant enzymes, cytoplasmic and mitochondrial Zn-SODCu SODMn. We should emphasize that the increase in antioxidant capacity does not provide longevity 110-120 years.
The Hunza feed mainly of cereals, including barley, millet, buckwheat and wheat candial. Also consume regularly, fruits and vegetables, in general, eat fresh and raw or only slightly cooked.
Among their favorite fruits and vegetables are potatoes, peas, beans, carrot, turnip, pumpkin, spinach, lettuce, apple, pear, peach, apricot, cherries and blackberries. The apricot seed is particularly appreciated and always present in the Hunza table. They consume almond apricot seed natural or extracting the oil through a process passed down from generation to generation.
Milk and cheese are for Hunzas an important source of animal protein. Meat is not completely banned, but is consumed only on rare occasions, for example, at weddings or parties, and even there, in extremely small the portions.
Walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts and fruits occupy an important place in Hunza menu. Accompanied by fruit or vegetables, for example, the salad is a complete meal for them. You can not talk properly about the Hunza people without reference to a basic food, a special bread called chapatti.
10. Tibetan Diet
For Tibetans, the cure for many many ills of modern life such as anxiety, uneasiness, imbalance, disharmony is … what you eat.
The monks from Tibet following the precept that people should eat according to what they are, to avoid digestive problems and accumulation of toxins resulting in diseases. Following this line, the human body is governed by the elements of nature, is creating some categories there.
So, those governed by the Wind element, are shaken and communicative, unstable, temperament and should avoid long periods without eating food. But those who fall into the category Fire, are aggressive and short tempered and should not take alcoholic drinks and food very spicy. But those who are influenced by the water element, are more relaxed and slower people, prone to laziness and it is recommended to restrict raw and cold food.
Adequate nutrition can decrease anxiety and irritability, and balance your weight. It also assists in combating many diseases and renders some more effective and faster recoveries. For those who practice sport is very important to have a balanced diet to boost their continuous physical, and perhaps improve their performance.
Try to eat several times a day instead of eating a heavy meal in the main dining. Eat mid-morning and mid-afternoon helps you control your appetite for main meals. Never forget to take your breakfast, remember that it is the most important meal of the day.
Taste this advice!