Nutrition and Diet (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
Dietary Guidelines for Americans
Following a healthy diet can be as simple as following the guidelines, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, that is. These guidelines have been updated and released every five years since 1980 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Department of Agriculture (USDA). The goal of these guidelines is to promote health and reduce the risk for major chronic disease for people 2 years and older. The Guidelines also address ways to maintain a healthy weight.
The key recommendations are:
Adequate nutrients within calorie needs
Food groups to encourage
There are also guidelines for specific population groups like children, adolescents, pregnant women, breastfeeding women, and older adults. You can read about them at http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/. The recommendations for fat, carbohydrates, sodium, and potassium can be found under their subheadings in this article.
The guidelines are extensive, but you do not need to meet every recommendation all at once. To establish a healthy eating plan, the goal is to begin to make gradual changes to your eating and activity. You can select one or two guidelines a week or month to focus on. Over time, you will be able to make most, if not all, of the guidelines a part of your life.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/23/2015
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