About the Mediterranean Diet

Hi, I’m Dr. Rick Zullo, and I’ve been preaching about the Mediterranean diet since back in my days of living in Italy. Those years showed me first-hand how the Italian lifestyle is at once delicious, healthy, and easy to maintain. I didn’t set out to make these “discoveries,” but rather they came as the natural consequence of trying my best to adapt to the local culture.

Years later, when I eventually found myself back in the United States, I couldn’t believe how difficult it was to export those same eating habits and lifestyle norms. Our culture doesn’t encourage it and our food delivery systems make it almost impossible. 

I gave up on it pretty quickly and fell back into the standard American diet and sedentary lifestyle. Slowly but surely, I began to gain weight, lose energy, and generally became less healthy. Poor sleep, aches and pains, mood swings… you name it.

I’m not sure what was the final straw that inspired me, but one day I just decided that I was going to make it a priority to practice the lifestyle habits I had learned in Italy, despite all of the head winds I would have to fight against.

Well, eventually it worked. And it wasn’t even as hard as I thought it would be. Turns out, most of the resistance was in my own head. It simply took a shift in my mindset and a willingness to make some small tweaks to my daily routines.

I knew from experience that trying too hard to go “all-in” at once would only cause frustration and ultimately, failure. So I plotted out six incremental steps that I would take to gradually get back to the Italian version of myself. None of them were individually difficult, so it never really felt like a chore.

Let's Talk About the Mediterranean Diet.

Now my goal is to help as many people as possible to find the same inspiration, and change their lifestyle to change their life. The “Six Steps to a Mediterranean Diet” will be part of the soon-to-be-released second edition of my book, Eat Like an Italian.

The first edition did quite well, occasionally bubbling up to the top of Amazon’s bestseller list. But it was more of an irreverent memoir on the obsessive fixation that Italians have over their food (notice I didn’t say “diet”). Now I’d like to take a more serious look at how the Italian way of eating can make us ALL healthier, without ever worrying about a “diet.” I'm also going to review fasting plans, which have gotten a lot of attention in recent years. 

In the meantime, below are some ideas and resources to get you started on the right path. Again, there is nothing unpleasant or tortuous about this. On the contrary, the pleasure of delicious food should be celebrated and enjoyed on your path to improved health and well-being.  I hope you'll join me on this journey!

Several years ago I wrote an article entitled, “Five Italian Food Rules that Foreigners Need to Know.” It was inspired by a few of the (many)

34 Italian Food Rules

By now we have all heard about the health benefits of olive oil in our diets. Not only is it less “fattening” than other fats, but

Health Benefits of Olive Oil

The late U.S. physiologist Ancel Keys is the person most closely associated with popularizing the origins of the Mediterranean Diet. He coined the term when he

Origins of The Mediterranean Diet

FAQs About the Mediterranean Diet:

WHAT is the Mediterranean Diet, exactly?

The Mediterranean Diet is more than a diet; it’s a lifestyle that combines wholesome foods with an attitude towards healthy, sustainable living that benefits both the individual and the community.

WHERE is the Mediterranean Diet traditionally practiced?

As the name implies, the Mediterranean Diet is traditionally practiced in countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea such as Italy, Greece, and Spain. However, modern conveniences have encroached on these areas, making them susceptible to temptations of the Global Industrial Diet.

WHY is the Mediterranean Diet the best model to emulate?

The Mediterranean Diet focuses on simple, easy to follow fundamentals that promote overall well-being and longevity. There is ample evidence from generations of people who have followed this regimen.

WHO says the Mediterranean Diet is the best?

The Mediterranean Diet has been recognized over the years as the best overall dietary plan by countless experts including nutritionists and specialists in diabetes, heart health, human behavior and weight loss, who have reviewed detailed assessments of large population studies.

HOW difficult is the Mediterranean Diet to follow?

With regards to the "discipline" required, the Mediterranean Diet is very easy to follow. However, the difficulty can be in finding the high-quality ingredients at your local supermarkets.

WHICH ingredients are most common/important in the Mediterranean Diet?

The exact ingredients vary slightly from location to location, but in general they will almost always include fresh seasonal vegetables, whole grains, legumes, olive oil, red wine, and modest portions of meat or seafood.

“Let food be thy medicine, and let #medicine be thy #food.” - #Hippocrates #mediterraneandiet

Click to Tweet

About the Mediterranean Diet Blog - Recent Acquisitions

In 2022, Eat Like an Italian acquired two other websites that are aligned with my approach to the Mediterranean lifestyle. 

The first was GoWinNutrition.Com, a wellness website that also included many recipes which are compliant with the basic principals of Italian cooking. 

The second was fastingtransformation.com, a website dedicated to promoting the annual Fasting Transformation Summit, a live in-person event which brought together world leaders in fasting protocols and current research in nutrition science.

Fasting, and in particular, the Fasting Mimicking Diet promoted by Dr. Valter Longo and his company ProLon, has been something that I have found to be a very important addition to the Mediterranean Diet protocol. 

*Content on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice.