Vaunted Mediterranean gastronomy

There are reasons, says Dalrymple, for liking the Mediterranean diet

other than health ones, namely aesthetic ones, and this is important because if it were discovered that a diet of raw cabbage and boiled fish without salt produced the same result, would anyone other than a masochist contemplate adhering to it?

He points out that

the idea that diet is the sovereign way to health is a very old one.

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