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Looking for a Healthier Way to Eat? Go Mediterranean.

Friday, January 15th, 2016

Like most men and women, weight loss is typically at the top of the resolution list. And while there are a ton of fad diets out there, the Mediterranean Diet is viewed as the eating plan for good health.  In fact, it meets the newly released U.S. Dietary Guidelines. The Mediterranean diet is heavy on protein and includes fruits and limited dairy, plus olive oil and may even a glass of red wine. The USDA guidelines recommend people consume 2,000 calories a day including 6.5 ounces of protein, 2.5 cups of fruit and 2 cups of dairy.

And while you incorporate this diet into your lifestyle know that research has shown that the traditional Mediterranean diet reduces your risk of heart disease. An analysis of more than 1.5 million adults demonstrated that by following these dietary guidelines, people reduced their risk of death from heart disease and cancer, as well as reduced incidence of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases according to the CDC.

Essential Components of the Mediterranean Diet

The Mediterranean Diet focuses on seven food groups shown in the graph below. It also emphasizes the following:

  • Concentrate primarily on plant-based food such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and nuts.
  • Limiting red meat to more than just a few times a month
  • Eliminating salt and replacing it with herbs and spices
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Replacing butter with healthy fats, such as olive oil
  • Drinking red wine in moderation (optional)



The Basics

Getting started on the Mediterranean is simple. It’s not about a quick fix or a strict diet plan. It’s a formula for day-to-day healthy eating for long-term health benefits.  So, remember to shop the perimeter of the supermarket, eat seasonal foods, and make good food choices. It might just save your life.


Coby N. Harrison, MD

Undergraduate – Spring Hill College, Mobile, AL

Medical School – the University of Alabama at Birmingham

Internship and Residency – University of South Alabama Medical Center, Mobile, AL

Specialty – Internal Medicine

Certification – American Board of Internal Medicine

Dr. Harrison works alongside her husband, Jason Harrison, MD at Internal Medicine Center.

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