HOLY HOMER…WHILE WE CHAMPION THE “MEDITERRANEAN DIET”, WITH ITS ANCIENT ROOTS IN THE BEAUTIFUL OLIVE GROVES IN THE PELOPONNESUS, ON AN ALMOST DAILY BASIS, THE GREEKS HAVE QUIETLY MADE THEMSELVES THE MOST OBESE COUNTRY IN EUROPE…SHOWING OGGIES THAT EATING RIGHT MUST BE COMBINED WITH EATING SMALLER PORTIONS…READ THE EXCERPTS FROM THIS INFORMATIVE NEW YORK TIMES ARTICLE…
“In Greece, three-quarters of the adult population is overweight or obese, the worst rate in Europe “by far,” according to the United Nations. The rates of overweight 12-year-old boys rose more than 200 percent from 1982 to 2002 and have been rising even faster since.”
“Small towns…western Crete, considered the birthplace of the famously healthful Mediterranean diet — emphasizing olive oil, fresh produce and fish — are now overflowing with chocolate shops, pizza places, ice cream parlors, soda machines and fast-food joints.
The fact is that the Mediterranean diet, which has been associated with longer life spans and lower rates of heart disease and cancer,
cancer, is in retreat in its home region. Today it is more likely to be found in the upscale restaurants of London and New York than among the young generation in places like Greece, where two-thirds of children are now overweight and the health effects are mounting, health officials say.
“This is a place where you’d see people who lived to 100, where people were all fit and trim,” Dr. Stagourakis said. “Now you see kids whose longevity is less than their parents’. That’s really scaring people.”
That concern has been echoed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, which said in a report this summer that the region’s diet had “decayed into a moribund state.”
“It is almost a perfect diet, but when we looked at what people were eating we noticed that much of the highly praised diet didn’t exist any more,” said the report’s author, Josef Schmidhuber, a senior economist at the food organization. “It has become just a notion.”
Greece, Italy, Spain and Morocco have even asked Unesco to designate the diet as an “intangible piece of cultural heritage,” a testament to its essential value as well as its potential extinction.”