I hear people complain to me that they are quite confused about how to eat. They hear conflicting information. Is a low carbohydrate diet the healthiest? Or is a low fat diet the healthiest? Am I eating too much protein? First of all, there is no “diet” that works long term. None. Your goal should be a healthy lifestyle. What is a healthy lifestyle? The healthiest way to eat is a whole and unprocessed food lifestyle, avoiding sugar and processed foods. The biggest reason for our obesity epidemic is processed food. Processed food is loaded with sugar, simple carbs, and unhealthy oils. Foods that are loaded with sugar and simple carbs raise insulin levels, which cause weight gain and make weight loss very difficult. (See prior article on this topic.) Processed foods contain large amounts of processed vegetable oils, which raise inflammation levels. (See prior article on this topic.) They tend to have minimal nutrition. They tend to have little if any fiber, which helps in controlling insulin levels and promotes weight loss. Furthermore, processed foods tend to have minimal vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. These micronutrients help to keep you healthy and avoid illness including cancer. The majority of the foods you eat should be in their whole, natural form. They should not have labels with ingredients that you cannot even pronounce. Eating whole, unprocessed foods will help you to lose weight and keep it off. The Mediterranean diet/lifestyle focuses on eating whole foods in their natural form. Research suggests this type of eating can be more beneficial in protecting your health than taking a statin medication. A whole foods, unprocessed lifestyle can lower your blood sugar, decrease your insulin levels, decrease your triglyceride levels, increase your LDL particle size, and lower your inflammation levels. So start changing you diet today. Clear out your pantry. Shop the perimeter of the grocery store. Avoid foods that are processed, they are not good for you. They will make you fat and promote illness. Eat whole, unprocessed foods for a healthier you!