Can the Mediterranean Diet and Meatless Monday Share the Same Table?

March 4th, 2013

Bonnie Taub-Dix at food market in Istanbul

Now that the Mediterranean Diet is back in the news, in part due to a recent landmark study reported by The New England Journal of Medicine, we wanted to learn more about the far-reaching benefits of eating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and nuts and the beneficial effect on our overall health.

Q: Can the average American mix the Mediterranean Diet into their Meatless Monday lifestyle?

A: It’s so easy to eat like a Mediterranean — and you don’t even have to leave home to do it! Like Meatless Monday, move meat to the side — or take a pass on it altogether a few nights a week. Add avocado and  a variety of nuts to your salad; choose fish several nights a week; change to whole grain breads and cereals; use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream; be sure to have fruits and/or vegetables at each meal; and most importantly, take the time to eat with your family.

Q: What are three ingredients we should all eat more of for better health?

A: My three ingredients would be: Nuts because they add fiber and healthy fats. (Just swap them into your diet instead of butter, spreads, and fried foods.) Whole grains which can help control heart disease and diabetes. (Their fiber will help keep you moving!) Vegetables which can help make you feel full without filling you out and provide the wealth of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients with very little calories.

Q: If we blended Meatless Monday with the Mediterranean Diet, what would you anticipate the short- and long-term results to be?

A: The benefits could be astounding — anywhere from lower weight to lower blood pressure, and reduced cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

Bonnie Taub-Dix, MA, RD, CDN is owner of BTD Nutrition Consultants, LLC, and has over three decades of experience counseling clients, including celebrities and dignitaries, and as author of Read It Before You Eat It, she keeps her finger on the pulse of what consumers are looking for when they shop for food, listen to a news story, or seek nutrition-related guidance.

Visit her website:, read her blog and follow her on Twitter: @Eatsmartbd, Facebook: and Pinterest: