The first thing you notice when you walk into a European Market is how fresh the food is. Food items aren’t wrapped in plastic or tucked away in cardboard boxes behind frosted glass freezers. Olives float in fresh olive oil contained in aged wooden barrels. Huge blocks of cheese temp the eyes and nose. Fresh baked breads are stacked in piles high and the aroma awakens the senses. Veggies begged to be picked up and practically fondled. Europe has tried very hard to stop genetically modified foods into their boarders. Dairy products cannot have traces of antibiotics, hormones or petrochemical fertilizers. The foods just look fresher as you walk by each stall in the market, and for good reason, IT IS! There has been much talk about why Europeans, particularly those who live around the Mediterranean Sea, by and large, are healthy (and more so than Americans). Is it the foods they eat (fresh olives and olive oil in their cooking), red wines (bioflavinoids), fresh meats, or the abundance of fresh herbs (antioxidants) used in food preparation? Or is it the lifestyle (walking rather than driving everywhere), sitting down to a delicious meal and talking with friends and family rather than eating in front of the television (with all it’s food commercials enticing you to eat more?) The Mediterranean Diet is not so much about food, as it is a way of life.
Stress Tip for the Day:
How is the quality of your life? Do you wander through the market (other than a farmer’s market, Whole Foods is the closest thing most people will see to a Mediterranean Market display of food) letting your sense of smell influence your food selection? Are evening meals a celebration of life, or an errand to rush through? Is food preparation an art form or just something to microwave? Do you take evening strolls through your neighborhood to visit with neighbors or stay sequestered in your house after work each day? Do you take time to watch the sunsets and smell the flowers and herbs at dusk (the best time)? If you’re looking to improve the quality of your life, start with the freshness of the food you eat, but don’t stop there.
Links/Books/Movies Worth Noting:
Here are a few links with more information about THE diet:
Quote for the Day:
“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”– J.R.R. Tolkien
Photo for the Day:
One of ourfirst stops in Ireland was at the English Food Market in Cork. This photo, of the olive stand, was nothing less than mouth-watering (and the free samples were excellent).
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.