- Every year, US News and World Report ranks the best diets for the year ahead. For 2019, the Mediterranean diet took home the top award.
- The Mediterranean diet is high in fresh fruits and vegetables, low in red meat and sugar, and allows you to drink wine.
- It could help with weight loss, heart health, and diabetes prevention.
To determine the best diets, a panel of nutritionists and specialists in diabetes, heart health, and weight loss reviewed 41 diets, including the increasingly popular ketogenic, or keto, diet,Weight Watchers, and Atkins.
The Mediterranean diet came out on top. It also ranked No. 1 in a few category rankings, including best heart-healthy diet and best plant-based diet.
The Mediterranean diet is high in fresh fruits and vegetables and low in red meat and sugar
The concept of the Mediterranean diet comes from the countries that border the Mediterranean sea, where people historically ate mainly produce, nuts, and healthy fats. The Harvard School of Public Health and a think tank called Oldways created a diet based on the general eating principles of these places, according to US News.
Unlike highly restrictive diets like the keto diet or the Atkins diet, the Mediterranean diet is balanced and allows people to eat a wide variety of foods in moderation. In fact, the diet is safe for most people, including children and older people.
Foods including whole-grain pita bread, fresh fruit, salads, nuts, beans, olive oil, and salmon are staples of 2019’s top diet and promote a variety of health benefits.
The diet could help with weight loss, heart health, and diabetes prevention
When a person fills their diet with the kinds of fresh, unprocessed foods found in the Mediterranean diet, they may lose weight, improve their heart health, and prevent diabetes, according to US News.
Since the diet focuses on heart-healthy fats like olive oil, avocado, and salmon, it also could lower bad cholesterol, a major cause of heart disease, according to the Mayo Clinic. “The Mediterranean diet discourages saturated fats and hydrogenated oils (trans fats), both of which contribute to heart disease,” the Mayo Clinic said on its website.
The diet could also help prevent cognitive diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s as well as breast cancer.
You can drink wine on the Mediterranean diet
Unlike some other diets, the Mediterranean diet allows adherents to drink wine. “While certainly not required, a glass a day for women and two a day for men is fine if your doctor says so,” US News wrote.
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- Read more:
- 10 reasons you might be gaining weight that have nothing to do with your diet
- 6 ways to stick to a diet – even if your partner eats whatever they want
- 9 things about the keto diet I wish I’d known before starting it
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