The truth about the Mediterranean diet

The truth about the Mediterranean diet


Each day this week, we examine one of the world’s most popular diets. Putting the latest scientific evidence under the microscope, we’ll discover these diets' true impact on your health.

Today, we’re talking about the Mediterranean diet. This indulgent diet champions vegetables, beans, fish, and even red wine, all with a liberal helping of extra virgin olive oil.

However, this relatively high-fat diet undergoes many regional adaptations, and the wide range of options can be confusing, even intimidating, if you’re not that confident in the kitchen.

In this special episode of ZOE Science & Nutrition, Jonathan is joined by Christopher Gardner, Professor of Medicine at Stanford University and the Director of Nutrition Studies at Stanford Prevention Research Center. Together, they discuss this diet's potential health benefits and pitfalls. 

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00:00 Introduction

00:42 Topic Intro

02:42 What is the concept of the Mediterranean diet?

04:22 Why do we have more data on this diet?

06:08 What are the main differences between this and other diets?

07:30 How much meat is in the Mediterranean diet?

08:20 Is the Mediterranean diet a “whole food” diet?

09:10 How do whole grains fit into this diet?

10:06 Where do oils and legumes come into this?

11:31 What happens when you switch from a US/UK-centric diet to a Mediterranean diet?

13:23 What is going on inside the body to deliver the health benefits?

14:08 What are the possible challenges of the Mediterranean diet?

16:05 Keto vs. Mediterranean diet study

19:09 What's the verdict?

19:50 Outro

Mentioned in today’s episode: 

Adherence to Ketogenic and Mediterranean Study Diets in a Crossover Trial: The Keto-Med Randomized Trial, from Nutrients  


Effect of a ketogenic diet versus Mediterranean diet on glycated hemoglobin in individuals with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes mellitus, from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition                                                                           

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Episode transcripts are available here.

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