In , Middle Eastern cuisine was reportedly one of the most popular and fastest-growing ethnic cuisines in the US. The exact countries considered to be part of the Middle East are difficult to determine as the definition has changed over time and from source to source. Additionally, the earliest written recipes come from that region. During the first Persian Empire ca. Figs, dates and nuts were brought by merchants to conquered lands, and spices were brought from the Orient. The region was also influenced by dumplings from Mongol invaders; turmeric and other spices from India; cloves, peppercorns and allspice from the Spice Islands ; okra from Africa, and tomatoes from the New World. Moreover, religion has impacted the cuisine by making lamb the primary meat since both Jews and Muslims do not eat pork. Furthermore, Al-Maza is Lebanon’s primary brewery, and once it was the Middle East’s only beer producer. Lebanon is known in the region for its alcoholic drinks: wine and arak, as an exception to the Middle East’s lack of alcohol. Grains are the basis of the Middle Eastern diet, where wheat and rice are considered staple foods.
In Eastern Mediterranean countries, undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies coexist with overnutrition-related diseases, such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. At the moment several of these guidelines are available only in the English language. In summary, Eastern Mediterranean FBDGs mainly focus on food safety, not all are available in the local Arabic language, and they do not provide specific suggestions for the large number of foreign workers and migrants. Food and nutrition play a key role in the prevention and treatment of undernutrition and over-nutrition, diet-related non-communicable diseases NCDs, such as obesity, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and some types of cancer [ 1, 2 ]. In several Eastern Mediterranean countries, in the last few decades, several social health determinants such as political instability, low income, urbanization, demography, local conflicts, and migration have dramatically affected food availability and choices and consequently the nutritional status of certain populations [ 3, 4 ]. In particular, inadequate intake of some nutrients is responsible for undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies, whilst the increased consumption of processed added sugars, saturated fat or trans fatty acids, NaCl- and calorie-rich foods has played a key role in the increased incidence of NCDs [ 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 ]. Currently, two contrasting nutrition-related conditions co-exist: undernutrition and micronutrient deficiencies, especially among children, and overnutrition-related NCDs claiming over 2. Countries with fewer than , inhabitants according to the WHO website were excluded. The data concerned the FBDG format, additional texts such as leaflets, booklets providing further information and advice on the types and quantities to be consumed for each food group and additional tips regarding fluids, alcohol, physical activity and body weight advice and individual healthy behaviours.
New York: Penguin Books. Other dishes, such as the Arabo-Andalucian Bastilla or Albondigas have different traditional spice mixes and fillings. It is often served with diced tomato, onion and olive oil. Maintain a healthy body weight 2. This review analyzed 12 studies that tested the effects of a Mediterranean diet on mortality, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and heart disease of a total 1. Rice prepared with chicken, stock, saffron, ground lamb and almonds is a fixture of Tunisian meals. Saffron was used for its yellow coloring more than its flavor, because Muslim cooks like to enhance the appearance of their dishes. A type of thick dried yogurt made from goat’s milk, called jameed, is poured on top of the lamb and rice to give it its distinct flavor and taste. They are often served in season.