Healthy Eating, Italian Style

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Lemons in Sorrento

I’ve just returned from a short vacation in Italy, a country where I’ve had the pleasure of traveling many times before. I suppose like any foodie who gets to travel in a country renowned for its culinary tradition, the thing that always stands out most for me is the food.  While it is undoubtedly tasty, what really impresses me is just how easy it is to eat healthy in Italy.

In my mind, there are four key reasons why:

  • The food is fresh — freshly picked from fields or butchered, freshly made, not out of a box.  Which makes eating healthy taste so much better.
  • Meals are relatively simple.  Probably the most commonly-used ingredients are olive oil, salt and pepper, which only enhance the great flavor of the actual food.
  • Portions are reasonable.  Not too big, not too small.  Just enough to satisfy.
  • The focus is on enjoyment — how food looks, how it tastes and how we feel as and after we eat it.

To top it off, gluten-free choices abound in Italy.  Seems so many Italians are gluten-sensitive, the government even subsidizes the purchase of gluten-free foods in pharmacies!  As I and my daughter are gluten-sensitive, finding that many restaurants offer gluten-free options was wonderful, to say the least.

Here are just a few pictures of our most recent Italian food journey.  The first set were taken at a typical market where many Italians still shop for much of their food.

A typical Italian market

Dried tomatoes and mushrooms at the market

More goodies

These guinea hens are delicious.  Called faraona in Italy

Can’t forget a picture of all the wonderful cheeses!

These pictures are of some of the great meals we enjoyed.

Gluten-free spaghetti vongele (spaghetti with clams) in Positano

Margarita pizza with arugula — gluten-free, of course :)

Grilled calamari in Sorrento

And of course, the wine!

The ever-enjoyable gelato

Finally,  a picture of daughter Lesley who we went over to see

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