Is the Mediterranean Diet the Same as the Sonoma Diet?

The Mediterranean Diet is not a fad diet, but rather a healthy diet based on the traditional dietary habits of Southern Italy and other countries that border the Mediterranean Sea. Because of the regional climate, diets in this area tend to center around healthy fruits and vegetables, protein-rich beans and legumes, plenty of fish and poultry, and very little red meat. Food preparation includes plenty of olive oil that replaces butter and other saturated cooking fats, and a variety of herbs and spices that replace salt.

The Mediterranean Diet also calls for a healthy amount of exercise (at least 30 minutes 3-5 times per week. A moderate amount of red wine is optional, but may provide anti-oxidant protection for a healthy heart.

What Are the Benefits Of The Mediterranean Diet?

The health benefits of this diet are significant. When followed consistently as a long-term lifestyle change, and not as a fad diet, the Mediterranean Diet will help you lose weight, develop a flat belly, lower cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.

Why Are We Hearing About It Now?

The Mediterranean diet is not new, in fact, it has been the traditional diet for Mediterranean people for thousands of years. But it recently came back into fashion with the publication of a book called The Sonoma Diet, by Dr. Connie Guttersen, which incorporates principals of the traditional Mediterranean diet into the modern American lifestyle.

The Sonoma Diet breaks the diet plan into three distinct phases or “waves”. The first wave is designed to change your eating habits and reprogram your metabolism. You’ll then move on to the second wave, and remain there until you reach your goal weight. The third wave is the maintenance phase and allows you to indulge in occasional desserts and snacks.

Does it Work?

Overall, the Mediterranean Diet is one of the better weight loss plans. Because it encourages a change in lifestyle and not just a short-term diet plan, followers of this plan stick with it much longer than other diet plans. This may also be true because of the variety of food that is available to dieters – no prepackaged diet food here, dieters can plan and prepare their own meals, as long as they adhere to the list of allowed foods.

There is also a slight, but significant, psychological benefit to the Mediterranean Diet – instead of focusing on things you can’t eat (fat, carbs, sugar, etc), this eating plan emphasizes healthy foods that can be eaten in almost any quantity. The Mediterranean Diet is not about deprivation, but rather a celebration of nature’s bounty.

How Much Does It Cost?

You can follow the traditional Mediterranean diet for nothing more than the cost of groceries. If you want to follow the Sonoma Diet, the cost of the book is about $15 at Amazon.