Diet is a major concern for many people, especially those who are dedicated to maintaining fitness. There are numerous benefits to be gained by following a proper diet.
There are several different types of diets from which to choose. Each type has its own benefits and drawbacks. Every diet expects you to eat some foods and also avoid some, too. Avoiding your favorite food for the sake of health and fitness is quite challenging.
In this article, we will be looking at Mediterranean and Western diets. Keep reading to know more about these diets and their comparison.
Being a traditional diet, the Mediterranean diet is characterized by a high intake of vegetable oils with a comparatively lower protein intake. You might find it similar to the Keto Diet; however, according to diet specialists, the Mediterranean diet is a lifestyle more than a diet. It provides a number of health benefits and encourages you to consume all those foods that help you maintain your weight.
A Western diet is a type of modern diet, also known as the “American Standard Pattern Diet.” This diet consists of a high sugar intake, high intake of red meat, packed food, fat-rich products, fried foods, corn, refined potatoes, and grains. This diet gained popularity and has spread worldwide over the last few years.
Comparison between Mediterranean and Western Diet
- These two diets are opposites. The Mediterranean diet is healthier because it provides all the important nutrients that make a body healthy. Based on epidemiological studies, the Western diet is positively related to heart problems, obesity, and cancer.
- The most common difference is a high intake of red meat in the Western diet. Red meat generates a certain compound in the body, increasing the risk of colorectal cancer. It also disturbs the blood cholesterol level and further leads to heart disease.
- The Mediterranean diet emphasizes consuming more vegetables, fruits, and nuts regularly, while the Western diet does not. Your body is healthier by consuming more veggies, fruits, and important vitamins and minerals. At the same time, nuts can help you modify the brain’s progress. Nutritionists recommend the Mediterranean diet.
- Another significant difference is the amount of fiber included in the diets. The Western diet gives you less fiber, whereas the Mediterranean diet provides sufficient fiber. People have suffered from constipation and even colon cancer partly due to low fiber intake.
- Another noteworthy difference is the Western diet involves a high intake of sugar but the Mediterranean doesn’t. You may experience increased weight and elevated blood sugar levels with a high intake of sweet beverages and foods. It can cause diabetes, heart problems, acne, aging, and depression.
- The Western diet recommends eating packaged and processed food that is high in salt and fats. It goes through ultra-high heat processing and damages all the essential nutrients necessary for metabolism. According to experts, consuming processed foods leads to diseases since they don’t meet the body’s demands. On the other hand, you are strictly prohibited from having processed food while following the Mediterranean diet.
- The Western diet provides saturated fatty acids or trans fats that increase LDL levels and your body weight. This is harmful to the heart and other body parts. However, the Mediterranean diet provides foods that are highly rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. They increase HDL levels and protect the human heart by making a sheath around it.