Middle Eastern food is widely known for its flavor and spices, but is it as healthy as the popular Mediterranean diet?
The Mediterranean diet has been widely heralded as one of the healthiest diets in the world, with many health benefits associated with it. It is based on a variety of fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds, olive oil, and small amounts of fish and poultry. This type of diet is low in saturated fat and high in antioxidants.
Middle Eastern food can also be a healthy option if prepared correctly. It has many of the same components as the Mediterranean diet – fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains (such as bulgur wheat or couscous), legumes (such as chickpeas or lentils), nuts and seeds (such as almonds or sesame seeds), olive oil, and small amounts of fish or poultry.
However, there are some key differences between Middle Eastern cuisine and the Mediterranean diet. Middle Eastern food often includes more processed foods than the Mediterranean diet – such as fried foods like falafel or kibbeh – which can be higher in fat content.
Additionally, some dishes may include more red meat than is typically recommended on a healthy diet. Additionally, traditional Middle Eastern desserts such as baklava are usually very high in sugar.
Overall, while Middle Eastern food can be part of a healthy lifestyle when consumed in moderation and prepared correctly – with an emphasis on fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes and fish – it cannot replace the traditional Mediterranean diet for optimal health benefits.
Conclusion: While Middle Eastern food can be a healthy option when prepared properly with an emphasis on fresh ingredients like vegetables and fish – it cannot replace the traditional Mediterranean diet for optimal health benefits. Therefore it cannot be said that Middle Eastern food is necessarily healthier than Mediterranean cuisine.