What Are the Seven Dietary Guidelines for Americans?
Promoting health and preventing disease have a lot to do with one’s diet. The Food and Nutrition Information Center of the United States Department of Agriculture laid out seven dietary guidelines for people above the age of two years old regarding intelligent food choices that promote health and prevent disease.
These guidelines are:
1. Consume different varieties of food.
Deficiencies in vitamins and minerals can foster disease in your body. It is important that you consume different types of food so that your body can get a good spread of all the necessary vitamins and minerals.
2. Perform physical activity in proportion with the amount of food that you are taking in.
Balancing the food that you consume with corresponding physical activity to burn off the energy is extremely important in maintaining a healthy weight. You will gain weight if you consume more calories than what you burn off through your physical activities.
3. Include a lot of grain products, vegetables, and fruits in your diet.
Fiber, vitamins, and minerals are essential for your health and well-being. By eating a different variety of grain products, vegetables, and fruits you will be feeding your body the essential elements that it needs.
4. Eat foods that are low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol.
Foods high in cholesterol and saturated fat are amongst the biggest killers in our society today. Eating foods that are low in fat content is important if you do not want to have a heart attack in your future. Do not avoid all kinds of fat. Your body does need some fat to function properly. Unsaturated fats are the best type to consume.
5. Only allow a moderate amount of sugars in your diet.
Sugars are high in calories and many of the foods that we eat already contain sugar. These can be sugars that occur naturally in fruits or that are added during the manufacturing process. Watching your sugar intake will help you avoid gaining unnecessary weight.
6. Only include a moderate amount of salt and sodium in your diet.
Scientific studies suggest that a high amount of salt and sodium intake could increase your blood pressure. When this occurs it could lead to serious and sometimes fatal health risks.
7. Consume alcoholic beverages in moderation, if you consume them at all.
There are almost no nutrients in alcoholic beverages and yet these drinks contain a lot of calories. Excess consumption of alcohol could lead to serious health problems in addition to the social and relationship problems that it also causes.
To many people the seven dietary guidelines will sound like common sense. If it were common sense, one wonders why such a large percentage of the population is obese.
Following these seven dietary guidelines will help you lead a more healthy and active life, give you more energy to perform your daily activities, and improve your general health and well-being.