Poor diets now killing more people than cigarettes!
This study is the most comprehensive worldwide observational study of its kind, spanning nearly three decades. The results show that annually, tobacco was associated with 8 million deaths and unhealthy, poor diets 11 million deaths.
Of those diet-related causes of death, heart attacks and strokes topped the list, followed by cancers and type 2 diabetes. Overall, eating and drinking better could prevent 20% of deaths globally.
The main killers
Researchers assessed intakes of 15 different nutrients such as whole grains, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, omega 3 fatty acids, salt, red meat, processed meat, sugary drinks, dairy products and fibre.
Surprisingly, consumption of red and processed meats, trans fats and sugary drinks all fell towards the bottom of the risk chart for most countries. The common top four dietary factors contributing to deaths were:
Not enough wholegrains
Not enough fruit
Not enough nuts and seeds
Too much salt
So it would seem that our biggest problem is not so much the junk food we eat but the nutritious foods we don’t eat.
The Mediterranean Diet
Countries that have a mainly Mediterranean diet seem to perform the best, with the lowest number of diet-related deaths being in Israel, France, Spain, Japan and Andorra.
The Mediterranean diet emphasises a high consumption of vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, legumes, wholegrains and seafood; a moderate consumption of eggs and dairy products; a small amount of meat and the use of olive oil. Plus, eating meals with family and friends, and daily exercise are important components of the Mediterranean lifestyle. This type of diet has been shown to encourage weight loss, reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, cancer and type 2 diabetes.
Get into Mediterranean eating & reduce your risk
Addressing those specific dietary factors, may we suggest the following delicious meals from the Gourmet Dinner Service menu…
Vegetables + Legumes or Grains
Moroccan CousCous Salad (serves 4-6) (family meal)
Fragrant Lamb with Chick Pea (complete meal for one)
South American Pepper w Jalopeno (complete meal for one)
Malaysian Beef w Minted Pea Mash (complete meal for one)
Eggplant Parmigiana (mains for 2)
Vegetable Lasagne w Pesto (mains for 2)
Spinach with Lemon Oil (side dish)
Broccoli with Garlic Oil (side dish)
Omega 3 Fish + Olives
Classic Salmon Mornay (mains for 2)
Goan Fish + Prawn Curry (mains for 2)
Chicken, Chorizo + Green Olives (mains for 2)
Chicken w Mediterranean Veg + Black Olives (complete meal for one)
Fruit & Nuts
Vegetable Curry w Cashew Black Mustard + Rice (complete meal for one)