The Mediterranean Diet is The Recommended Eating Plan for 2024
The Mediterranean diet has been ranked as the greatest overall diet for seven years running, according to 2024 ratings released on Wednesday by US News & World Report.
According to the survey, the Mediterranean diet also came in top in the categories of best family-friendly diet, best diet for healthy eating, best diet for diabetes, and best diet for consuming foods that are good for bones, joints, and the heart.
Out of 30 diets, the Mediterranean-DASH intervention for neuro-degenerative delay (MIND diet) ranked third while the DASH diet (dietary techniques to control hypertension) came in second. The three best diets are plant-based and emphasise whole grains, legumes, and seeds together with fruits and vegetables.
The vegan diet, which came in third place among the finest plant-based diets, was assessed for the first time by the award committee, which consisted of 43 nutrition experts. The Herbalife Nutrition diet (29 of 30), the Dukan diet (28 of 30 best overall diets), the Profile Plan (19 of 30 diets), the HMR (Health Management Resources) diet (21 of 30 diets), and the Plantstrong (formerly Engine 2) diet (which ranked 15th in the best overall diet category) were among the other recently evaluated diets for 2024.
Shanley Chien, senior health editor at US News, wrote in an email that “the world of diet and nutrition can be overwhelming and filled with misinformation and inaccurate health editor.”
According to Gretel Schueller, managing editor of health at US News & World Report, “that’s why US News does the legwork for its users, gathering input from nationally recognised medical and nutrition experts to determine which diets rise to the top for nutritional completeness, ease of following, and promoting a healthy lifestyle for the long term.”
What is the Mediterranean diet plan?
The Mediterranean diet has been shown in studies to lower the risk of breast cancer, diabetes, high cholesterol, dementia, and memory loss. Longer life, stronger bones, and a healthier heart have all been associated with the meal plan, which is more of an eating style than a restricted diet.
The diet consists of straightforward plant-based cuisine where fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, and seeds make up the majority of each meal. A small amount of nuts and extra-virgin olive oil are also recommended. Other fats like butter and olive oil are rarely, if ever, consumed, while refined carbohydrates and sugar are saved for special occasions.
Red meat is rarely used and mainly solely to add taste to food. Omega-3 fatty acid-rich, healthful oily fish is recommended, and lesser portions of eggs, dairy, and chicken are consumed than in the typical Western diet.
The fundamental pillars of the Mediterranean diet are social contact during meals and physical activity. A mindful diet involves lifestyle modifications such as dining with loved ones, interacting throughout meals, consuming preferred foods with awareness, and exercising and moving thoughtfully.
experts’ lowest ranking
The raw food diet, which advocates consuming food that hasn’t been “cooked, processed, microwaved, irradiated, genetically engineered, or exposed to pesticides or herbicides,” came in last on the list of the top 30 diets overall.
According to US News & World Report, although those qualities might seem healthful, the diet is extremely limited nutritionally and might even be harmful to certain individuals. Cooking some dishes, according to Dr. Vanita Rahman, MD, clinic director of the Barnard Medical Centre in Washington, DC, “allows for more variety and boosts the intake of protein and other essential nutrients.”
“The safest and healthiest way to enjoy raw foods is as part of a whole foods, plant-based diet that is rich in raw fruits and vegetables, and cooked lentils, beans, grains and vegetables,” Rahman said in the review on the website.
The well-known ketogenic diet was ranked No. 1 in the best quick weight-loss category but placed 25th overall, according to the research. Experts disagree, stating that the diet—which limits carbohydrates to roughly 20 per day—is too stringent to be adhered to for an extended period of time.
“I observe a lot of people starting the ketogenic diet in an attempt to lose weight, then quitting when they find it too difficult. In an assessment posted on the US News & World Report website, licenced dietitian and panellist Amanda Sauceda remarked, “This diet is difficult to stick to, and many people aren’t actually (following a diet that is) keto but low carb.”
The paper stated that people with specific forms of cancer, liver, kidney, and heart problems shouldn’t follow the diet. Pregnant women, high-achieving athletes, and children who have not been advised by a doctor to lose weight should not follow the ketogenic diet.
A review of research published in 2023 raised concerns about the potential for kidney stones, heart disease, cognitive decline, muscle loss, and nutritional deficits while following a ketogenic diet for longer than two years.