Healthy, delicious living with the famous Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean diet is a way of eating that you can enjoy for life without having to sacrifice olive oil or your favorite red wine. People in Greece, Sicily and southern France have been enjoying this diet for hundreds of years and reaping the health benefits.

The Mediterranean diet is simple. It encourages eating lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthy fats. People who eat according to this diet tend to have healthier hearts, better blood sugar levels, leaner bodies and overall better health than the general population. A diet that tastes delicious, makes you feel great and lets you drink wine? Sign me up!

Going Mediterranean

Use these simple tips to get started:

  • Meals should be made mostly of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, legumes and seeds
  • Add fresh fruit such as blueberries or strawberries to cereals or salads
  • Add a variety of veggies to your next omelet, sandwich or pasta dish
  • Eat plenty of whole grains like oatmeal, whole wheat bread and brown rice
  • Enjoy plain, unsalted raw walnuts or almonds in salads and mixed with dried fruit
  • Choose unsaturated fats such as olive or canola oil
  • Replace butter with olive oil when sauting vegetables or as a base for a sauce
  • Choose salad dressings made with olive or canola oil
  • Season food with fresh or dried herbs and spices instead of salt. Try adding fresh garlic, thyme and crushed pepper to soups and stews
  • Eat grilled or broiled fish at least twice a week

Include friends, family and exercise in your Mediterranean lifestyle. One of the best things about this new way of thinking about eating is that its fun. Meeting friends for walks followed by sumptuous shared dinners makes eating healthy even more delightful.

This article is for information only and is not intended as advice. For more information, talk to your health care provider or nutritionist.

MARINATED CHICKEN BRUSCHETTA

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Marinate time: 30 minutes
  • Cook time: 12 minutes
  • Makes: 6 servings

 

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup Wish-BoneItalian Dressing, divided into three equal parts
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 2 medium beefsteak tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup red onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, finely chopped (optional)

Cooking Directions

  1. Pour 1/4 cup Wish-Bone Italian Dressing over chicken in large, shallow non-aluminum baking dish or plastic bag. Cover, or close bag, and marinate in refrigerator, turning occasionally, 30 minutes to 3 hours.
  2. Meanwhile, combine tomatoes, onion, basil and 1/4 cup dressing in medium bowl. Cover and marinate in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Remove chicken from marinade, discarding marinade. Grill or broil chicken, turning once and brushing frequently with remaining 1/4 cup dressing, 12 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked. Serve tomato bruschetta over chicken.

For marinated chicken with fresh salsa, use cilantro instead of basil.

Visit SamsClub.com/meals for more meal ideas.

Gina Ruskie is a registered dietitian.