Include a variety of colorful vegetables to obtain adequate amounts of betacarotene, vitamin C, iron, potassium, and calcium. Nonstarchy vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, peppers, mushrooms, and greens average about 25 calories per serving. At minimum, aim for three servings from this group every day and work your way up to five or more for optimum health! Continue Reading →
Antioxidants roam around the body neutralizing destructive substances called free radicals. Free radicals are formed both as a result of normal metabolic processes and exposure to toxins in the environment (tobacco, alcohol, pollution, sun exposure, and so on) and have been implicated in heart disease, cancer, and other chronic illnesses. Continue Reading →
Breads, cereals, pasta, rice, grain products, and starchy vegetables such as potatoes and corn provide complex carbohydrates, B vitamins, iron, fiber, some protein, and many other nutrients. They are generally low in fat and have about 80 to 100 calories per serving.
As you learned in Chapter 4, “Balanced Nutrition,” try to choose grain products made with whole grains rather than highly processed grains. Starchy vegetables are included with this group because they have a nutrient profile similar to grain foods. Continue Reading →
Nutrient and calorie needs vary from person to person depending on age, gender, body size, body composition, level of physical activity, and many other conditions. To understand how best to meet these needs, it’s helpful to group foods according to the nutrients they provide.
A food pyramid (see Figure 5.1) is one way to visualize how each food group contributes to your daily needs. The pyramid provides a range of servings for each group. Individuals with lower calorie needs (women, older adults, sedentary people) can choose the lower number of servings from each food group, whereas those with higher calorie needs (men, teenagers, active people) can select the higher number of servings suggested. Continue Reading →
The USDA’s Food Guide Pyramid is one of the most widely recognized nutrition education tools ever used in this country. Unfortunately, recognizing this graphic representation of current nutrition guidelines and actually understanding how to put it into practice are two entirely different matters. In this chapter, you’ll learn how to interpret a slight modification of the food pyramid and make it work for your healthy lifestyle.
As researchers uncover more information about nutrition and health agencies discover better ways to disseminate this information to the public, these agencies can and should update their educational approach. Continue Reading →