The Mediterranean diet, which has earned its spot at the top of countless "Best Diet" lists across the planet due to its incredibly effective results and its healthy eating habits has been declared as "dead" by a member of the WHO due to the constantly changing eating habits and lifestyles in Spain, Greece and other countries.
According to The Washington Post, the rate of obesity in children has propelled itself over a whopping 40%. João Breda, program manager at the World Health Organization, spoke in front of the European Congress about obesity, throwing fault at the introduction of snacks and soft drinks which contain excessive amounts of sugar.
As The Guardian reports, while speaking to the Congress in Vienna on Thursday, Breda said: “The Mediterranean diet for the children in these countries is gone,” and “There is no Mediterranean diet anymore. Those who are close to the Mediterranean diet are the Swedish kids. The Mediterranean diet is gone and we need to recover it.”
The Mediterranean diet is one that prides itself on numerous health benefits provided by healthier eating and consumption of clean foods such as fruits, fresh vegetables, fish, nuts and whole grains. According to Breda, children are opting for more processed foods in this current day, choosing saltier or sweeter foods over locally produced and leafy green foods which are severely affecting their overall health and weight.
Breda also spoke about the importance of physical exercise and the lack of it in the current day, saying “Physical inactivity is one of the issues that is more significant in the south European countries." The studies and reports were based on Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative, or COSI, which gathered data from over 40 countries to monitor changes to health and eating habits. From five to nine years old, Italy leads in childhood obesity. Andy De Santis, a dietitian, spoke about how he wasn't surprised by today's results and while the Mediterranean diet has clearly been watered down and is not as effective, he doesn't believe that it's "dead"