Eating Right Is Simple

Healthy diet and choice of foods should not be complicated, you should just focus of making wise choices regarding your beverage and food. These recommendations from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans can help get you started.

Try to eat fruit, vegetable, whole grains and low-fat or fat-free milk and dairy products.

Include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts in your everyday food.

Keep your diet low in saturated fats, trans fats, reduce salt (sodium) and added sugar.

Count Your Calories

Try to choose nutrient-rich rather than “good” or “bad” foods. Most of your chosen foods should be full of vitamins, minerals, fibers, and other nutrients, and low in calorie. Smart food choices will help you to reduce weight problems and mange a healthy physical life. Nuts are nutrient-rich choices that have shown to reduce risk of cardiovascular diseases and balance cholesterol levels in the body.

Focus on Variety

Try to include a wide range of food groups in your everyday diet and get all nutrients that your body needs. Include more dark green vegetables such as leafy greens and broccoli and orange vegetables including carrots and sweet potatoes in your everyday meal. Eat more beans and peas to fulfill your protein needs. Include at least 3 ounces of whole-grain cereals, breads, crackers, rice or pasta at your everyday meal.

Know Your Fats

In order to reduce the risk of heart disease, look for foods low in saturated fats and trans fats. Try to take monounsaturated and polyunsaturated oils.

Here is the definition of each group of nutrients recommended by Dietary Guidelines for Americans:

·         Vegetables

o   Dark-green vegetables: All fresh, frozen, and canned dark-green leafy vegetables and broccoli, cooked or raw: for example, broccoli; spinach; romaine; kale; collard, turnip, and mustard greens.

o   Red and orange vegetables: All fresh, frozen, and canned red and orange vegetables or juice, cooked or raw: for example, tomatoes, tomato juice, red peppers, carrots, sweet potatoes, winter squash, and pumpkin.

o   Legumes (beans and peas): All cooked from dry or canned beans and peas: for example, kidney beans, white beans, black beans, lentils, chickpeas, pinto beans, split peas, and edamame (green soybeans). Does not include green beans or green peas.

o   Starchy vegetables: All fresh, frozen, and canned starchy vegetables: for example, white potatoes, corn, green peas, green lima beans, plantains, and cassava.

o   Other vegetables: All other fresh, frozen, and canned vegetables, cooked or raw: for example, iceberg lettuce, green beans, onions, cucumbers, cabbage, celery, zucchini, mushrooms, and green peppers.

·         Fruits

o   All fresh, frozen, canned, and dried fruits and fruit juices: for example, oranges and orange juice, apples and apple juice, bananas, grapes, melons, berries, and raisins.

·         Grains

o   Whole grains: All whole-grain products and whole grains used as ingredients: for example, whole-wheat bread, whole-grain cereals and crackers, oatmeal, quinoa, popcorn, and brown rice.

o   Refined grains: All refined-grain products and refined grains used as ingredients: for example, white breads, refined grain cereals and crackers, pasta, and white rice. Refined grain choices should be enriched.

·         Dairy

o   All milk, including lactose-free and lactose-reduced products and fortified soy beverages (soymilk), yogurt, frozen yogurt, dairy desserts, and cheeses. Most choices should be fat-free or low-fat. Cream, sour cream, and cream cheese are not included due to their low calcium content.

·         Protein Foods

o   All seafood, meats, poultry, eggs, soy products, nuts, and seeds. Meats and poultry should be lean or low-fat and nuts should be unsalted. Legumes (beans and peas) can be considered part of this group as well as the vegetable group, but should be counted in one group only.