Mediterranean diet should be given ‘intangible heritage’ status. Italy Greece, Spain and Morocco support the Mediterranean diet at UNESCO

As reported by the Vancouver Sun ( ):
The Mediterranean diet of olive oil, pasta, tomatoes and fish is to be awarded UNESCO World Heritage status in attempts to halt the onslaught of junk food, according to Italy’s agriculture minister.

Italy’s promotion of the Mediterranean diet, which revolves around fresh fruit and vegetables, pulses and unrefined cereals, polyunsaturated fats such as olive oil rather than butter, limited dairy products and small quantities of meat and sugar, is supported by Greece, Spain and Morocco.

If the four countries are successful, they will be required to take steps to promote and protect traditional cooking and ingredients.

That could help to combat a growing obesity problem in countries such as Spain and Italy, where people have drifted away from traditional diets, lead more sedentary lives than previous generations and are eating more packaged food.

The Italians are particularly concerned that low quality copies of their best known foods — including prosciutto ham, extra virgin olive oil and mozzarella cheese are being made by other countries and passed off as genuine.

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