Dive into Wellness: The Surprising Health Benefits of the Atlantic Diet

Ever heard of the Atlantic Diet? It’s not just a new food trend but a way of life based on the culinary traditions of the Atlantic coastal regions like Portugal and Spain. This meal includes fresh seafood, vegetables, fruit, and steamed grains. It’s a true reflection of the abundant Atlantic Ocean and the fertile lands that border it.


What is The Atlantic Diet?

At its core, the Atlantic diet is about simplicity and freshness. The base includes a variety of fish and shellfish, hearty portions of vegetables and fruits, whole grains, and moderate olive oil use. Unlike the Mediterranean diet, which has some similarities, the Atlantic menu emphasizes fish over other types of meat and uses specific regional produce.


What Are the Health Benefits?

Starting the Atlantic Diet is like sailing into improved health and fitness. The meals go beyond what’s on your plate. It is a holistic approach to wellness that can deliver positive health benefits. Let’s delve into the specifics:


Heart Health

The emphasis on omega-3-rich seafood promotes better cardiovascular health, reducing the risk of heart disease. Omega-3 fatty acids are known to lower triglycerides, slightly lower blood pressure, and reduce blood clots. Thus, it reduces the chances of heart attack and stroke.


Weight Management

Focusing on natural and whole foods, this diet is inherently balanced and satiating, which can help maintain a healthy weight. The high fiber content from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains promotes a feeling of fullness, reducing overall calorie intake without the need for calorie counting.


Anti-Inflammatory Benefits

Chronic inflammation is a root cause of many diseases, but the Atlantic Diet’s rich array of antioxidants and healthy fats acts as a natural anti-inflammatory regimen. Foods like blueberries, leafy greens, and fatty fish are stars in fighting inflammation.


Brain Health

The benefits of the Atlantic diet extend to the brain. Omega-3 fatty acids support cognitive function and mental health. These healthy fats are essential for maintaining brain structure and function, potentially reducing our risk of cognitive decline as we age.


Diabetes Prevention and Management

Due to whole grains, legumes, and fibrous fruits and vegetables, the diet’s low glycemic load helps regulate blood sugar levels. This can be particularly useful in preventing or managing type 2 diabetes.


Enhanced Longevity

Adopting the Atlantic Diet can lead to a longer and healthier life. The high-nutrient menu, emphasizing fresh, unprocessed foods, matches the diet of some of the world’s longest-lived populations.


Practical Tips for Embracing the Atlantic Diet

Atlantic diet adoption is about making small, sustainable changes that bring new health benefits. Whether you’re a longtime San Diego resident or visiting, these tips can help you incorporate the Atlantic diet into your lifestyle:


Start with Seafood

San Diego’s coastal area offers plenty of fresh seafood, a staple of the Atlantic diet. Explore local fish markets or beach eateries for fresh, sustainable, delicious fish and shellfish. Make seafood the star of your meal, grilled, baked, or steamed several times a week.


Visit Local Farmers’ Markets

San Diego is blessed with year-round farmers’ markets, where you can find locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables. Embrace eating seasonally and regionally, just as the Atlantic Diet encourages. These markets support local agriculture and ensure you get the freshest and most nutritious produce.


Incorporate Whole Grains

Replace refined grains with whole grains like quinoa, barley, and brown rice. These can be great bases for salads or side dishes. San Diego’s health food stores and markets offer a variety of whole grains that are perfect for incorporating into your diet.


Use Olive Oil

Make olive oil your go-to fat for cooking and dressing salads. Its heart-healthy fats are a vital component of the Atlantic Diet. San Diego’s specialty food stores and some farmers’ markets offer high-quality olive oils, including locally produced options.


Enjoy Outdoor Dining

San Diego weather is perfect for outdoor dining. Prepare a meal inspired by the Atlantic diet and enjoy the outdoors, whether it’s a picnic at the park or dinner on the patio. Eating out can enhance your mealtime experience and match the diet’s emphasis on enjoying your food and savoring flavor.


Connect With the Community

The Atlantic diet is as much about community as it is about food. Attend local cooking classes focused on healthy eating or join a community garden. Connecting with others who value healthy eating can provide support and inspiration.


Moderation and Variety

Remember, the Atlantic Diet is about balance and variety. Enjoy a combination of foods without overdoing it. And remember to pair your meals with some exercise, whether a walk by the lake or a stroll through one of San Diego’s beautiful parks.


Recipes and Meal Ideas

Diving into the Atlantic diet is a fascinating culinary journey. Here are some delicious recipes and meal ideas that represent this healthy diet’s essence. Whether you are an experienced chef or a novice, these recipes are designed to inspire and delight.


Grilled Sardines with Lemon and Herbs

Sardines are a staple in the Atlantic Diet, rich in omega-3 fatty acids and full of flavor. Marinate fresh sardines in a mix of lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, and your favorite herbs. Grill them to perfection for a simple yet exquisite meal. Serve with a side of roasted vegetables. You can also turn it into a fresh salad following this recipe.


Seafood Paella with Brown Rice

Paella is a versatile dish that allows you to mix various seafood, such as shrimp, clams, and mussels. Use brown rice instead of white to boost the fiber content. Sauté onions, bell peppers, and garlic, then add rice, a pinch of saffron, and a splash of white wine. Add your seafood and simmer until everything is beautifully cooked. You can also add broccoli and mushrooms!


Kale and White Bean Soup

This hearty, nutritious soup is perfect for any day. Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil, then add chopped kale, cooked white beans, and vegetable broth. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika. Simmer until the kale is tender. This soup offers a comforting hug in every bowlful. For a creamy alternative, check this recipe.


Portuguese Mackerel Salad

Combine grilled or baked mackerel with mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and olives. Dress with a simple vinaigrette of olive oil, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper. It is a refreshing, tasty, and nutritious quick meal. Try it with lentils, too!


Whole Grain Tuna Nicoise

Give the classic Nicoise salad an Atlantic twist using whole grains like farro or barley as the base. Top with seared tuna, sautéed green beans, hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, and olives. Serve with a squeeze of lemon and olive oil for a filling and healthy meal. You can also use whole-wheat orzo as a base.


Berry & Walnut Yogurt

For a hearty breakfast or snack, serve Greek yogurt with mixed berries, honey, nuts, and seeds. It’s an easy, uncooked meal filled with antioxidants and protein.


Weekly Meal Idea

Plan a week where each day highlights a component of the Atlantic Diet. For example, Mondays could be focused on seafood, Tuesdays on legumes, and Wednesdays on whole grains. This approach ensures a variety of nutrients and balance throughout the week.


Final Words

Embarking on the Atlantic Diet journey can be a delightful and healthful experience. It’s an invitation to explore a world of flavors while doing wonders for your body. Try it; who knows? It might be the lifestyle change you’re looking for.

Before you begin any dietary changes, it is essential to consult with your doctor and ensure this diet is appropriate. Schedule a call to discuss your wellness goals and nutritional needs and explore our resources for more insight and guidance on adopting a healthy lifestyle. Allow us to be your companions on the path to wellness.

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