Friday, October 24, 2008

Eat Greek

The following is from Dr. Agatston. Greek and Middle Eastern foods are really my favorite. I love the flavors, the freshness and the variety. There was a Greek restaurant in my town, but it didn't make it. I think the Latino population has won out, which can be good healthy food, yet the restaurants here still do a lot of frying and cooking with mondo amounts of lard. Fortunately, the store I'm working at now has a world class Deli and chef prepared choices. The good news is they lean towards lighter, heart healthy fair which naturally includes Greek cuisine. I hit the jackpot for food. I'm not doing much cooking these days with my schedule and busy life, but I'm still trying to cut back and eat healthier. I am dropping some weight, but Callie and I need to put on more miles and I need to add the time for some weight training.

Enjoying Greek and Middle Eastern cuisines fits right in with the South Beach Diet lifestyle. Countries like Greece, Lebanon, Israel, and Turkey rely on fresh whole foods such as lean chicken and seafood, nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables, fiber-rich whole grains, beans, and healthy fats such as those found in avocados as well as extra-virgin olive oil — all staples of the South Beach Diet. This way of eating is one of the primary reasons that the Greek population has a lower incidence of heart disease, stomach and lung cancers, stroke, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and obesity than the populations of the United States and other Western nations. People eating the South Beach Diet way also experience these health benefits while losing unwanted weight.

When it comes to eating out at Greek and Middle Eastern restaurants, try kebabs made with lean grilled meat (like lamb, sirloin, and skinless chicken breast) or seafood (such as shrimp, scallops, and salmon). Consider vegetables, whole-grain dishes such as couscous and bulgur, and dips such as hummus (made from chickpeas) and tzatziki (a blend of cucumber, garlic, and yogurt) served with whole-grain pita bread (if available) or vegetable dippers. These cuisines also employ plenty of fresh herbs and seasonings, so eating right is delicious and satisfying.

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