Following a Mediterranean Diet Might Fight Aging, Research Says

Scientists may have just found the key to feeling younger for longer...and it's delicious.

Caprese Italian or Mediterranean salad. Tomato mozzarella basil leaves black olives and olive oil on wooden table.; Shutterstock ID 291753935; Job (TFH, TOH, RD, BNB, CWM, CM): Taste of HomeShutterstock/Marian Weyo

You can’t run away from age, but what if you could slow down its effects? We already know that there’s a link between what you eat, the lifestyle you lead, and how well you age. However, new research suggests that adopting a Mediterranean diet could be the answer to a healthier, more youthful life. Here’s what you need to know.

Slow down the aging process

A series of articles from The Gerontological Society of America found a strong link between eating a Mediterranean diet and aging healthily. The results suggested that there was a positive relationship between sticking to the diet and physical and mental wellness as people age. What’s more, researchers were also able to pinpoint specific benefits of the eating plan, such as reducing inflammation.

In short, that means that switching to a Mediterranean diet could help you stave off some of the signs of aging. (Mushrooms might also help slow the aging process.) You could keep your mind as well as your body healthy for much longer when you choose this particular lifestyle. Still, it’s important to remember that these benefits will depend greatly on how strictly you stick to this type of diet plan.

“Greater clarity on how this diet is defined, in both interventions and observational studies, will be critical in the aim of achieving a consensus on how to optimally apply this dietary pattern towards maximizing healthy aging,” say Michelle A. Mendez, PhD, and Journals of Gerontology: Medical Sciences Editor-in-Chief Anne B. Newman, MD, FGSA, in the articles’ opening editorial.

How to stick to a Mediterranean diet

Ready to make a positive change and start eating healthier than ever? Mastering the Mediterranean diet doesn’t have to be difficult. You just need to understand some baseline guidelines before anything else. Staples of this diet include a wealth of fresh fruit and vegetables, olive oil, nuts, and seeds. You should also eat fish on a regular basis, which will give you a boost of omega-3’s, too.

That’s easy enough, but what about restrictions? Well, red meat, dairy, and processed meats can be eaten, but they should always be in low amounts. Overeating any of these ingredients contradict the premise of the diet. So, for example, a typical Mediterranean meal would be some grilled fish and fresh vegetables with a piece of fruit as dessert. Easy and delicious!

30-Minute Mediterranean Diet Recipes
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Charlotte Grainger
Charlotte Grainger is a creative feature writer, with a flair for food, health and lifestyle pieces. Her work has been seen in a number of national publications including Beyond Words Magazine, Reader's Digest and Psychologies. When she’s not typing away, you can find her trying out new recipes or binging Netflix shows— sometimes simultaneously.