This chapter focuses on the health benefits of traditional culinary and medicinal plants of the Mediterranean region. The Mediterranean diet is mentioned to be rich in fruits and vegetables, monounsaturated fatty acids and olive oil and the diet has a negative association with incidence of metabolic syndrome that contributes to an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. Mediterranean plants are believed to prevent or cure a wide range of ailments based on their bioactive components that can exert anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic or anti-diabetic activities. A table is presented that gives a list of Mediterranean plants and their health benefits as well as brief accounts of the medicinal use of the plants and includes rosemary, licorice, chamomile and olive oil among others. The consumption of olive oil has a strong correlation with reduced hypertension, cancers of the prostate, breast and colon. It highlights the mechanism of action of the bioactive components and the molecular targets derived from these plants.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||Complementary and Alternative Therapies and the Aging Population|
|Number of pages||22|
|State||Published - Dec 1 2009|
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