A healthy diet is key in providing your body the energy it needs to function efficiently. The following information is from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPlate. For more detailed information, professional staff are available for drop-in sessions and educational workshops.
MyPlate illustrates the five food groups that serve as the building blocks for a healthy diet:
Foods to Increase:
- Make half of your plate fruits and vegetables.
- Make at least half of your grains whole grains.
- Choose lean proteins like seafood, lean meat and poultry, eggs, beans and peas, soy products and unsalted nuts and seeds.
- Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk and like-products such as soy, rice, or almond milk.
- Choose foods that provide more potassium, dietary fiber, calcium, and vitamin D, which are nutrients of concern in American diets.
Foods to Reduce:
- Sugary beverages add calories to the diet without providing any essential nutrients.
- Aim for less than 2,300 mg of sodium daily, or less than 1,300 daily if you have hypertension, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease.
- Take your time – savor your food; eat slowly, enjoy the taste and textures, and pay attention to how you feel afterward. Eating too quickly can cause you to eat too much.
- Take control – eat at home more often so you know exactly what you are eating and how it’s prepared.
- Use a smaller plate to help with portion control.
- Learn how to read a food label.
- Try new foods you’ve never tried or haven’t tried in a long time.
- Satisfy your sweet tooth in a healthy way:
- Try creating a fruit parfait with Greek yogurt and fresh fruit layers. Add unsalted nuts/seeds/whole grain cereal for a crunch.
- Cut ½-inch banana slices, dip in melted chocolate, and freeze.
- Frozen grapes.
- Substitute frozen sorbet or frozen yogurt for a scoop of ice cream.
- Make a fruit smoothie with fresh fruit, 100% fruit juice, low-fat milk, and ice.
- Chocolate milk is a great way to fit in a hint of sweetness. It’s also an effective post-workout recovery drink, too.
Special Diet considerations
Gluten-Free Diet for Celiac Disease
- Visit the Celiac Disease Foundation for living gluten-free
- What Can I Eat?
- Making Healthy Food Choices
- Glycemic Index & Diabetes
- Carbohydrate Counting
- Living Well With Diabetes workbook
Cholesterol & Blood Pressure
Visit http://www.choosemyplate.gov/ten-tips and use the filter “College” or “Adults” for Tips Sheets on healthy eating.
- MyPlate Plan: An Interactive Tool to Get Your Presonalized Food Group Targets
- Dietary Guidelines for Americans
- Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics
- American Heart Association's Nutrition Basics