The Zone Food Pyramid represents the evolution of the Mediterranean diet by its simultaneous reduction of the glycemic load of the diet combined with a better protein-to-glycemic load balance for improved hormonal control. Furthermore, by reducing the amounts of grains and starches on the plate, the Zone Food Pyramid significantly increases the levels of polyphenols in the diet.

A more biochemical understanding of the Zone Food Pyramid can be seen the following diagram.

Protein To Glycemic Load Ratio

The glycemic load of a meal determines how rapidly glucose enters into the blood stream. Grains and starches are high glycemic load carbohydrates, fruits are intermediate glycemic load carbohydrates, and non-starchy vegetables are very low glycemic load carbohydrates. The ratio of the protein-to-glycemic load of every meal will determine the body’s hormonal responses to that meal for the next five hours. You need both protein and carbohydrate at every meal to maintain hormonal balance. Your success is easily determined by your lack of hunger for the next five hours after a meal.

The protein-to-glycemic load balance to reach the Zone is a bell-shaped curve, because we are not all genetically the same. Some of us can tolerate a wider protein-to-glycemic load ratio than others. However, as we age or become metabolically compromised by chronic disease, the breadth of that protein-to-glycemic load ratio to get into the Zone becomes narrower. This we why the use of Zone Food Blocks to design Zone meals makes it easier to maintain the correct balance to get into the Zone for the next five hours. Think of Zone Food Blocks like tumblers for combination lock. If you have the right combination, the lock opens and you get access into the Zone.

Unfortunately, you have dial in that right combination every five hours to maintain yourself in the Zone. This is why Zone Foods can be such a powerful dietary tool to help maintain hormonal balance. These patented products provide the right balance of the protein-to-the glycemic load coupled with unique appetite-suppressing qualities so all you have to do is to add as many non-starchy vegetables as you want to your serving of Zone Food that will you want to get you automatically into the Zone every time.

Perhaps it is not surprising that the dietary recommendations of the Joslin Diabetes Research Center at Harvard Medical School for the treatment of obesity, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes are remarkably similar to those of the Zone Diet. Following the recipes and using the Zone Food products found at makes it easier to keep you in the Zone for the lifetime.

For more information on the science of Anti-Inflammatory Nutrition, go to Dr. Barry Sears’ page at

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