Did you ever wonder why people around Crete seem so bright and relaxed? Back in the 70’s, Dr Ancel Keys, from the university of Minessota, asked himself a very similar question. His research lead him to a very interesting conclusion: the Mediterranean diet is perfect for preserving health without being deprived of delicious food. And, as you probably know, a happy body makes a happy mind…
If you’re thinking about renting one of our beautiful houses by the sea, bear in mind that holidays in Crete will not only be fun but also healthy!
A Mediterranean diet is based on high-fibre foods, quality fats and proteins. It includes fresh fruits and vegetables such as spinaches, tomatoes and oranges. Whole grains, nuts, legumes and beans are also an essential part of it (do you like hummus?) as well as herbs and spices, such as oregano and rosemary. It also includes high quality pasture-raised poultry, cheese, goat milk and yogurt (always consumed in moderation). Wild-caught fish and seafood can be eaten twice a week, whilst red meat is left only for special occasions. And, of course, you can indulge in a glass of local red wine once a day.
Want to know some of the many benefits the Cretan diet will bring you?
1. Keep a Healthy Weight
If you want to be happy with your body for a life time, you might need to change your food habits. The Cretan diet is ideal because you can eat as much as you want: it comes naturally with healthy fats and low carbohydrates. For example, you can enjoy roast anchovies with tomato and olive oil without feeling guilty (and they also bring you omega-3s!).
2. Prevent Cancer
Health is all about what we feed into our bodies, and food has proved to be the best medicine. When you go to Crete, you’ll eat a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables. They provide antioxidants, protect the DNA from damage, stop cell mutation, lower inflammation and delay tumour growth. Many studies suggest that olive oil (which can be found in almost every Cretan recipe, such as this delicious country salad) can be a natural cure against cancer.
3. De-stress and Relax
A Cretan diet is based on fresh ingredients that are usually bought in the local market the same day you are going to eat them. Cretan families treat meals as an opportunity to relax and socialise with each other. Whenever you go out to a nearby restaurant, you’ll be probably seated outside, enjoying the views and the sunny weather while you eat delicious dishes such as skioufichta with mushrooms. Take the chance to talk to your loved ones and your children, enjoying every dish without being in a hurry. Taking things slowly and focusing in the small details is a great way to feel grateful for the life we have – and it’ll also keep you stress free.
Thinking about Crete for this summer’s holidays? Start planning right now – and in the mean time, experiment with Cretan cuisine! This beautiful island will do miracles for your mind and body –exactly what you need and deserve after a long winter. We are a company who promote sustainable ecotourism, and our clients love us!